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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.

UK could have best broadband in Europe, says Jeremy Hunt

Britain could have the best broadband in Europe but only if it avoids the mistakes made in developing high speed rail, Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt said today.

Visitors to UK be made more welcome

The Government is considering wholesale changes to the tourist visa regime to capitalise on the Olympics effect which has sparked interest in visiting Britain.

Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt (right) hopes that Team GB's gold medals will help boost trade

London 2012: Ministers and businesses hope medal success will aid economy

Both ministers and businesses are hoping that Team GB's success at the Olympics will help boost the economy.   

Forgan to lead National Youth Orchestra

Dame Liz Forgan is to take over as the head of the National Youth Orchestra (NYO), after she leaves the Arts Council following Jeremy Hunt's shock move to force her out.

Female British Army personnel arrive to patrol the Olympic Park in Stratford, east London

Troop influx patches up security… now for the travel crisis

Trains unable to stop at main Games station as wrong kind of weather leaves cables overheated

More than 18,000 troops to provide Olympics security

More than 18,000 troops will provide security for the Olympics after ministers felt they should “leave nothing to chance”.

A Blagger's Guide To: English Heritage Red Guides

Forget '50 Shades of Grey' – here are 50 volumes of history
Stephen Gallagher and Gideon Berger with The Tree of Light, a block9 art installation

Olympic tree's 'two-fingered' salute

There may be no Glastonbury Festival this year but the pair behind one of the event’s standout instillations will next week unveil their contribution to the Olympic celebrations. One that “sticks two fingers up” to the commercial side of the games.

The House of Lords faces change, more than 100 years after the House of Commons won new powers

PM seeks to buy off Lords reform rebels

Cameron insists on changes to Bill to avoid embarrassing defeat by his own backbenchers

Nick Clegg: no surprises

Andrew Grice: Cameron facing a perfect Eurosceptic storm

Inside Westminster

Mowaffak Joumaa: The General indicated his intention to attend the Games months ago

Syria's Olympic chief barred from entering UK

General who heads National Olympic Committee is refused visa to attend Games

Thousands mark summer solstice

Thousands of people have marked the summer solstice despite the celebration being one of the wettest in years.

Broadcast exhibitions online to receive funding, Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt tells art world

Arts bodies will have to broadcast performances and exhibitions live on a new digital arts “channel” in return for receiving government money, under a radical funding shake-up proposed by Jeremy Hunt.

Tories to oppose Lib Dems on Lords reform in revenge for Hunt desertion

The rebels are expected to vote for the debate to have no time limit, so it could drag on indefinitely

Plans to regenerate London's Crystal Palace Park upheld

Multi-million pound plans to regenerate historic Crystal Palace Park were upheld by the High Court today.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
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Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee