Commercial

Bethany Doughty worked as an actuary for 10 years before deciding to retrain as a maths teacher. It has proved to be a lifechanging move, for all the right reasons…

Catherine MacLeod: A good 'spad' is trusted by the minister – and speaks for him

Being a special adviser at the heart of the Government is necessarily a privileged but hugely sensitive role. When Alistair Darling, then the new Chancellor of the Exchequer, asked me to be his special adviser in the Treasury in 2007 I had little idea of what was expected. There was no job description. It was a case of feeling my way, finding a modus operandi best suited to looking after his interests.

Leading article: A shameful tax avoidance culture

It was bad enough when it was only Ed Lester, the head of the Student Loans Company, who was enjoying lower taxes thanks to his being paid as a private contractor rather than a government employee. The implications grew darker when the Department of Health was forced to admit that two dozen of its senior staff were also pulling the same stunt. Only now, after a much-needed Whitehall-wide review, is the full extent of the rot revealed – and it should make both the non-mandarins themselves, and those who waved through their advantageous arrangements, blush with shame.

NHS workers reject pension reforms

Government hopes of resolving the bitter public sector pensions dispute were dealt a fresh blow today when a group of health workers rejected the controversial reforms.

Leading article: Lessons still to be learnt from grammar schools

Last week, it was the Education Secretary, Michael Gove.

John Rentoul: As Hilton heads off, Cameron Mark II begins

Dave prefers George's 'cold calculation' to Steve's 'idealism'
The Immigration minister, Damian Green, said BAA and the Border Force had to work better together

Visa scheme led to mass illegal migrant influx

Immigration chiefs were accused yesterday by MPs of presiding over "complete chaos" when the bungled introduction of a new student visa regime led to an influx of migrants to Britain to work illegally.

John Rentoul: Osborne is not Brown, but the faultline is showing

The Chancellor is the pole around which disaffection organises itself

An absolute shower: Prince Charles fulfils a lifelong ambition

Philip Hensher: It's tough to sack a civil servant (I should know)

The number of civil servants has, interestingly, dropped very substantially under the Coalition. Whether as a result of redefinition or of stripping down, the numbers have fallen since the Brownite high point, from over half a million to a mere 434,000.

Francis Maude: Weed out poor civil servants

A senior minister says Whitehall managers must step up efforts to identify and dismiss poorly-performing civil servants.

Prison staff take part in a protest outside HMP Manchester, as public sector workers go on strike in a row over pensions

Union leaders threaten more public sector strikes

Union leaders today warned that Britain could face a year of strikes by public sector workers if the increasingly bitter row over pensions  is not resolved.

Government 'destroying communities' say union leaders

The Government was attacked today for "destroying" communities with its spending cuts and other policies as thousands of trade unionists, pensioners, students and activists took part in the annual May Day celebrations.

Never knowingly undersold: Lord Hutton to chair coalition's first John Lewis-style spin-off

The former Cabinet minister Lord Hutton will this week be named as chairman of the first company to be spun out of Whitehall as part of the Government's vision to create a "John Lewis economy" of employee-owned businesses.

MoD civilian workers join pensions strike

Thousands of civilian workers in the Ministry of Defence and staff in other Government departments are to join another national strike next month in the long-running row over public sector pensions.

Frontline immigration staff becoming 'box-tickers'

Frontline immigration staff are becoming little more than “box-tickers and rules followers” as a result of the Government's passport-checking policy, according to the former head of the UK Border Force.

Siobhan Benita: 'I can feel from the attention that we're getting that people are really behind us'

Mayoral candidate has no profile, but ambition to spare

Siobhan Benita could surprise a few people. By Oliver Wright

Career Services

Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Ukraine crisis: The phoney war is over as Russian troops and armour pour across the border

The phoney war is over

Russian troops and armour pour into Ukraine
Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

The world’s entire food system is under attack - and Britain is most at risk, according to a new study
Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Seoul's plastic surgery industry is booming thanks to the popularity of the K-Pop look
From Mozart to Orson Welles: Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

After the death of Sandy Wilson, 90, who wrote his only hit musical in his twenties, John Walsh wonders what it's like to peak too soon and go on to live a life more ordinary
Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Fears are mounting that Vladimir Putin has instructed hackers to target banks like JP Morgan
Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years

Salomé: A head for seduction

Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years. Now audiences can meet the Biblical femme fatale in two new stage and screen projects
From Bram Stoker to Stanley Kubrick, the British Library's latest exhibition celebrates all things Gothic

British Library celebrates all things Gothic

Forthcoming exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination will be the UK's largest ever celebration of Gothic literature
The Hard Rock Café's owners are embroiled in a bitter legal dispute - but is the restaurant chain worth fighting for?

Is the Hard Rock Café worth fighting for?

The restaurant chain's owners are currently embroiled in a bitter legal dispute
Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival

In search of Caribbean soul food

Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival
11 best face powders

11 best face powders

Sweep away shiny skin with our pick of the best pressed and loose powder bases
England vs Norway: Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Lack of Englishmen at leading Premier League clubs leaves manager hamstrung
Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

Di Maria and Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

They both inherited the iconic shirt at Old Trafford, but the £59.7m new boy is joining a club in a very different state
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone