News Head of St Mary’s, Mike Kennedy, aims for ‘all-comers’

The elite Catholic college, launchpad to many illustrious alumni, will be open to all-comers

Aviva sells off RAC to Carlyle for £1bn

Aviva has sold its RAC business for £1bn to Carlyle Group, the private equity firm, as the insurance giant focuses on its main savings and insurance operations.

Alexander's warning raises union anger

Talks aimed at averting a wave of strikes in the autumn were on a knife-edge last night after the Government repeated its warning that most public sector workers would have to work longer and pay more towards their retirement.

Union fury at pensions 'bomb'

Union leaders threatened to walk away from talks over pensions reform today after the Government detailed plans to require most public sector employees to work longer and pay more for less generous entitlements in retirement.

UK unemployment total falls by 88,000

The Government today welcomed an "encouraging" fall in unemployment and a rise in jobs although unions expressed concern about huge cuts among the public sector workforce.

NHS privatisation 'still on track'

Health experts welcomed today's report but unions said the "NHS privatisation programme is still on track".

Anger as pay for top FTSE bosses soars by a third

The economic crisis has had little effect on the pay of top executives of FTSE 100 companies in Britain, who saw their median pay increase by 32 per cent in the last year to an average of £3.5m.

Bonus payments 'bounce back'

Bonus payments have bounced back after the recession, with billions of pounds being paid out, according to a report today.

NHS reforms essential, says David Cameron

David Cameron warned today that the Government's NHS reforms were essential to avert a £20 billion funding shortfall by 2015.

Bank forecasts weaker growth

The Bank of England braced the country for weaker growth today as rocketing energy bills and tough Government cuts continue to squeeze household spending.

Unemployment figures moving in 'right direction'

The Government said that unemployment was moving in the "right direction" despite an increase in the number of people on Jobseeker's Allowance and a youth jobless total of almost a million.

Minimum wage is on the rise

The national minimum wage is to increase by 15p to £6.08 per hour from October. The below inflation rise of 2.5 per cent, which matches the recommendation of the Low Pay Commission, was criticised as "modest" by TUC general secretary Brendan Barber.

Andreas Whittam Smith: Is it wise to criminalise respectable protest groups?

Judge UK Uncut by its actions and its words. At a Boots store, its supporters dressed up as hospital doctors in protest against £20bn of cuts to the NHS

Union leaders: Protests to continue over cuts

Union leaders today vowed to continue campaigning against the Government's spending cuts amid mounting anger at the trouble makers who clashed with police and damaged stores and other buildings during a huge TUC demonstration.

Up to 500,000 protestors attend anti-cuts demo

Organisers of a huge protest against the Government's public spending cuts tonight hailed the demonstration a "fantastic success" after hundreds of thousands of people joined the biggest event of its kind for over 20 years.

London braced for day of protest that could attract up to 250,000

Protesters from Aberystwyth to Aberdeen and from Penzance to Perth will travel to central London today for the biggest demonstration in Britain since the anti-Iraq war marches eight years ago.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 20 February 2015
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003
Barbara Woodward: Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with the growing economic superpower

Our woman in Beijing builds a new relationship

Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with growing economic power
Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer. But the only British soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross in Afghanistan has both

Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer

Beware of imitations, but the words of the soldier awarded the Victoria Cross were the real thing, says DJ Taylor
Alexander McQueen: The catwalk was a stage for the designer's astonishing and troubling vision

Alexander McQueen's astonishing vision

Ahead of a major retrospective, Alexander Fury talks to the collaborators who helped create the late designer's notorious spectacle
New BBC series savours half a century of food in Britain, from Vesta curries to nouvelle cuisine

Dinner through the decades

A new BBC series challenged Brandon Robshaw and his family to eat their way from the 1950s to the 1990s
Philippa Perry interview: The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course

Philippa Perry interview

The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef recreates the exoticism of the Indonesian stir-fry

Bill Granger's Indonesian stir-fry recipes

Our chef was inspired by the south-east Asian cuisine he encountered as a teenager
Chelsea vs Tottenham: Harry Kane was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope

Harry Kane interview

The striker was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope
The Last Word: For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?

Michael Calvin's Last Word

For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?
HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?