News

Construction hit its fastest level of growth in six years, according to the latest survey of the building sector.

Building firms braced for bleak winter

Construction firms were braced today for a bleak winter after figures showed subdued levels of activity and a nine-month low for growth in new orders.

Lenders call for mortgage rules rethink as market misfires

Mortgage lenders begged ministers to intervene to prevent the financial watchdog pushing ahead with its crackdown on irresponsible lending, as Persimmon became the latest housebuilder to warn that the property market was in a fragile state.

OFT inquiry into gravel suppliers

The Office of Fair Trading will investigate the aggregates industry to assess whether the taxpayer is getting a fair deal from suppliers of sand, gravel and broken rocks to road and house-builders.

'Grim' outlook for building industry as orders fall

Britain's building industry was facing a bleak future today after construction orders suffered a dramatic 14% fall between April and June.

Bovis builds a brighter outlook

Bovis Homes put aside two years of weakness in the housing market yesterday, reporting a first-half profit and sounding a note of optimism for the rest of the year.

UK 'value' falls by £94 billion

The total value of the UK fell for the second year in a row during 2009, official figures showed today.

Firm launches first corporate ISA for staff

Housebuilder Barratt today launched the UK's first company ISA for its staff.

Minor British Institutions: The Kitemark

We all take the British Standards Institution's Kitemark for granted, but it was a revolutionary development. The idea of appending an unmistakable brand of quality assurance to goods and services dates back to 1903, when the clever rearrangement of the letters BSM – British Standard Mark – was devised, a small landmark in the development of a modern industrial society.

Construction sector grows for first time in two years

Britain's embattled construction industry grew for the first time since February 2008 last month as the sector ended two years of "relentless contraction", according to a report today.

Amos checks Lie of the land

Scottish stable emerges from freeze-up with plan to take measure of Big Buck's

Housebuilders say sales are improving

Britain's housing market has put its worst days behind it but continues to be dogged by uncertainty, two leading housebuilders agreed yesterday.

The pain is not yet over for Britain's builders

It has suffered grievously from the collapse of the housing boom and the recession more generally, but the pain for Britain's building trade is seemingly not over yet: employment in construction declined for its 18th consecutive month.

Climate change survey says 83% willing to make sacrifices

More than 80 per cent of people believe climate change is a serious threat and are willing to make sacrifices to combat it, a survey by the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) showed today.

Brown to get tough on student visas and foreign skilled workers

Portrayal of immigration concerns as racist is 'lazy elitism', says Prime Minister

America rules out 'two-speed' internet

Web providers warned not to charge heavy users of bandwidth
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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
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
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