News Syrian refugees look out from an evacuated house in Istanbul. Hundreds of Syrian refugees will be allowed to come to Britain under new government plans

Hundreds of Syrian refugees will be allowed to come to Britain under plans to be announced by the Government on Wednesday.

Mary Macleod

At last – equality in the aristocracy: After a change in royal succession rules, blue-blood daughters' hopes are up

Controversial proposals to allow first-born girls to inherit aristocratic titles look likely to be given the green light after senior cabinet sources indicated the move would not be opposed by the Government.

Plain cigarette packaging: Labour urges Cabinet Secretary Jeremy Heywood to intervene over Lynton Crosby 'lobbying'

Labour have attempted to ratchet up the pressure on Britain’s most senior civil servant to intervene in the row over allegations that the Conservatives’ election guru used his position to lobby ministers on behalf of private clients.

David Cameron dodges Lynton Crosby tobacco lobbying question as links to private health firms are revealed

David Cameron was facing fresh questions about his election guru Lynton Crosby after it emerged the lobbyist's firm advised a private health alliance at the time of the Government's controversial NHS reforms.

More allotments are being sold off by councils

Allotment-holders take legal action against Eric Pickles

Legal action launched over decision to allow sale of sites

Grant Cameron, Suneet Jeerh and Karl Williams were arrested during a holiday in Dubai last year

Three Britons jailed in Dubai drugs case pardoned in amnesty for Ramadan

Three British men who were jailed for drug offences in Dubai earlier this year have been pardoned under a United Arab Emirates amnesty for Ramadan, according to the legal rights charity Reprieve.

Olympic volunteers pose in front of the National Gallery before the victory parade

Volunteer numbers receive Olympic boost

The steady decline in Britain’s volunteer culture was dramatically halted by the Olympic and Paralympic Games as thousands both formally and informally offered to help others for the first time, an official review has revealed.

Tony Blair slaps down David Cameron over lobbying claims

Tony Blair has slapped down David Cameron for suggesting that the former prime minister used his position to lobby him – possibly for private clients.

The Prime Minister with Lynton Crosby in April last year

Smoke, but no fire: Labour should stop banging on about Lynton Crosby

The median voter has no idea who this supposed magician might be

Lynton Crosby, the Conservatives’ election strategist

Smoking gun? David Cameron dodges Lynton Crosby cigarette packaging controversy question

Tory strategist’s links to cigarette giant pile pressure on PM after  tobacco policy U-turn

Britain last week postponed plans to introduce plain packaging on cigarettes

Tobacco industry told Government it was too early to tell if plain cigarette packaging would work – six months later ministers agreed

A major tobacco firm told the Government it was too early to assess whether selling cigarettes in plain packets would deter smokers – six months before ministers deployed the same argument.

Government in fresh bid to outlaw hardline Islamists

Efforts to outlaw the Hizb ut-Tahrir group have foundered as it does not advocate terrorism

Simon Read: Education about finance must be engaging for kids

The Prime Minister this week confirmed that financial education will be compulsory in English schools from September 2014.

Iain Duncan Smith is facing criticism that Universal Credit leaves some families worse off

Working families will be ‘worse off’ under Universal Credit scheme

Some working families will be worse off under Iain Duncan Smith's flagship Universal Credit - even though it was intended to encourage people back into work, according to research published today.

The Foreign Secretary referred to Cathy Jamieson MP as a 'stupid woman'

William Hague calls Labour MP Cathy Jamieson a 'stupid woman' during Prime Minister's Questions

Conservatives risk becoming embroiled in another misogyny row

Abu Qatada shown the deportation door to Jordan: the reaction

After two decades in the UK, prosecutors have finally confirmed Abu Qatada's arrival in Jordan to stand trial on terrorism charges.

Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and Clara have their first real heart to heart since he regenerated in 'Deep Breath'
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Apple showed no sign of losing its talent for product launches with the new, slightly larger iPhone 6 making headlines
techSecurity breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
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The official police photograph of Dustin Diamond taken after he was arrested in Wisconsin
peopleDownfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
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Young Winstone: His ‘tough-guy’ image is a misconception
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Ashley Barnes of Burnley scores their second goal
footballMan City vs Burnley match report
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Man of action: Christian Bale stars in Exodus: Gods and Kings
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Arts and Entertainment
Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca alongside Harrison Ford's Han Solo in 'Star Wars'
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Tracy Emin's 1998 piece 'My Bed' on display at Christie's
artOne expert claims she did not
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Ernesto Che Guevara and Fidel Castro, right, met at Havana Golf Club in 1962 to mock the game
newsFidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
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A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

The Locked Room Mysteries

As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Amy Adams on playing painter Margaret Keane in Tim Burton's Big Eyes

How I made myself Keane

Amy Adams hadn’t wanted to take the role of artist Margaret Keane, because she’d had enough of playing victims. But then she had a daughter, and saw the painter in a new light
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Parting view of Ofcom chief... we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

Wear in review

A look back at fashion in 2014
Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015. Might just one of them happen?

Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015

Might just one of them happen?
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced