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Six NHS trusts have “persistently” high death rates for patients who die in hospital or within 30 days of discharge, according to new data.

Boothroyd confirmed as new Coventry boss

Coventry have confirmed Aidy Boothroyd as their new manager, with the 39-year-old signing a three-year contract at the Ricoh Arena.

Pair face 32-year jail terms for 'chilling murder'

A judge today ruled that two "depraved" robbers convicted of the "chilling" murder of an office administrator who refused to reveal bank card details should each stay in jail for at least 32 years, police said.

Yvonne Skargon: Artist celebrated for her wood engravings from nature

The title of Jenny Uglow's recent biography of Thomas Bewick, Nature's Engraver, could as well describe the work of Yvonne Skargon, who like Bewick engraved nature in all its forms with equal skill and sympathy.

AWOL soldier loses sentence appeal

A soldier who went absent without leave as he was about to be deployed to Afghanistan lost a Court of Appeal challenge against his nine-month sentence today.

Man banned for drink-driving in toy car

A 40-year-old man who admitted driving a modified toy car on a road named after a motor racing circuit while over the drink-drive limit is starting a three-year ban, police said today.

Secret Language, by Barry J Blake

Wordplay with hidden delights

Pensioner drives wrong way down A12

A 95-year-man surrendered his licence after driving the wrong way down a major road for nearly five miles.

Is Boudicca a poster girl for intolerance and British nationalism?

Re-invented by the Victorians, under the name of Boadicea, Boudicca was presented as an idol of nationalism, of British warrior tradition and, somewhat incongruently, as a figurehead of imperialism, even though this was the thing she had fought against.

Police inquiry into MP's expenses

The Labour MP Harry Cohen has become the latest MP to be investigated by police over his expenses.

Roman Circus 'will be fantastic'

This week campaigners reached a £200,000 target in their fight to save Colchester's Roman circus. But it's just the tip of an iceberg of red tape the circus must dodge to survive as a tourist attraction. And while Colchester's leading archaeologist is thrilled the landmark figure has finally been made, he warns there's much more work to be done.

Romeo and Juliet, Mercury Theatre, Colchester

In Ed Hughes's tango Romeo and Juliet, one of the musicians is caught weeping after Juliet drinks the potion. Pulling himself together – after all, she's not really dead – he beats out a new rhythm, leading the Astillero tango orchestra in a gleeful number. The music stops when Juliet is discovered, her family's grief taking over.

Leading article: The real lessons of this NHS disaster

The Health Secretary, Andy Burnham, yesterday described the appalling treatment of patients at Stafford hospital as "ultimately a local failure". This misses the point. For one thing, Stafford is not the only NHS hospital that has put patients' lives at risk in recent years. Basildon and Colchester hospitals were also discovered to have jeopardised safety in 2009.

Letters: The torture debate part 1

Torture is an inexcusable assault on human decency

Man to face trial over £300,000 fraud

A 45-year-old man will stand trial next year in a £300,000 fraud case.

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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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