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“One thing I have become very sensitive about is this accusation that Conservatives are somehow racist,” Edward de Mesquita, who is standing as a Conservative candidate in West Hampstead, in London, told the Camden New Journal. “Conservatives are not racist. So many of the Conservatives have foreign wives, after all.

BBC presenter Colin Murray made comments about Olympic gold medallist Jessica Ennis-Hill's 'bottom'

BBC presenter’s sexist comment about Jessica Ennis-Hill ‘unacceptable’

Culture Secretary Maria Miller condemns Colin Murray after reference to Olympic medallist’s ‘bottom’

Checks, including blood pressure, can save 650 lives a year

Jeremy Hunt urges over-40s to take advantage of free NHS checks

More than 650 lives a year could be saved, as well as thousands of diabetes cases and heart attacks avoided, if 40- to 74-year-olds took up NHS checks, the Health Secretary has said.

Analysis: Hospital mediocrity isn't the problem - it's the failure to address it

The NHS needs a blame-free culture, a spirit of openness and the ambition to succeed

PM's election guru Lynton Crosby triggers smoke alarm

Has his work for a tobacco giant had any influence over government policy?

Liverpool Care Pathway: Controversial 'end-of-life' regime for dying patients 'to be replaced'

The results of an independent review show concerns raised by family members over the care of their dying loved ones

Campaigners have warned of a library “slaughter” in England

Campaigners warn of libraries in crisis across England

They claim over 1,000 face closure by 2016

In the UK there are some 80,000 sex workers, a figure said to include 4,000 women and children trafficked into the country to work as sex slaves

Victims of sex trafficking 'at risk' over NHS charging plans

Confusion over whether the charges would apply to maternity services, says RCM

The Long Live South Bank campaign has garnered 58,000 signatures for a petition calling for the skate park to be saved

National Theatre and English Heritage unite to oppose redevelopment of London's Southbank Centre

The skateboarding community, National Theatre, and English Heritage groups have come together to put a spanner in the works of a planned redevelopment of the area

A new NHS Helpline has been putting peoples lives at risk, doctors are saying

Foreigners to be made to pay £200 a year for NHS services

Foreigners who visit Britain for more than six months will be made to pay at least £200 a year to use NHS services, under a set of proposals to be introduced tomorrow.

Manchester Art Gallery has a collection of almost 13,000 pieces. Manchester is among the regional councils that are planning to cut cultural funding

Regional arts left with London’s crumbs as spending cuts bite, warns Harriet Harman

Culture Secretary warned that funding disparity will drive theatres and museums to the wall

Work to refurbish House of Lords toilets could cost up to £100,000

Work to refurbish House of Lords toilets could cost up to £100,000

Up to £100,000 will be spent sprucing up two toilets in the House of Lords, it has been revealed.

NHS baby deaths scandal: CQC officials 'threatened to sue to stop names being linked to alleged cover-up'

Under-fire officials threatened to sue the Care Quality Commission in an eleventh-hour bid to stop their names being linked to an alleged cover-up, it emerged today.

Dr Heather Wood and Cynthia Bower

CQC storm: ‘Bullying culture’ may mean care scandals go undetected

A former inspector of the Care Quality Commission has described how criticism was quashed and ‘good people’ were forced to shut up or quit

Cynthia Bower, former chief executive of the Care Quality Commission

CQC storm: ‘I can’t believe what your people have been doing. Bloody hell’

As the revelations about the alleged CQC cover-up emerge, Emily Dugan visits its call centre

A reveller, with a blanket wrapped around herself, celebrates the summer solstice at the ancient Stonehenge monument on Salisbury Plain in southern England

Thousands celebrate summer solstice ahead of 'historic moment' for Stonehenge

The neighbouring road is finally about to close

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 30 January 2015
As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch
Dame Harriet Walter: The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment

Dame Harriet Walter interview

The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment
Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Critics of Tom Stoppard's new play seem to agree that cerebral can never trump character, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's winter salads will make you feel energised through February

Bill Granger's winter salads

Salads aren't just a bit on the side, says our chef - their crunch, colour and natural goodness are perfect for a midwinter pick-me-up
England vs Wales: Cool head George Ford ready to put out dragon fire

George Ford: Cool head ready to put out dragon fire

No 10’s calmness under pressure will be key for England in Cardiff
Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links