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Off to the North of England education conference – the traditional curtain raiser of the year.

Yorkshire’s Andrew Gale hits out during the Pro40 fixture against Kent at Headingley yesterday

Pro-40 Round-up: Netherlands up and running as Stephanus Myburgh leads from the front

The Netherlands posted an impressive total of 239 for 6 in their first Clydesdale Bank Pro40 fixture of the season, against Gloucestershire yesterday. After losing the toss and being put in at Bristol, the Dutch reached their total thanks to Stephanus Myburgh's impressive 77, which featured 11 fours and two sixes, and Cameron Borgas's 38. Ed Young, who picked up 2 for 31, was the pick of Gloucestershire's bowlers.

Young in North most likely to have alcohol problems

A north-south divide in the prevalence of alcohol-related problems has been revealed by a new study.

Hundreds in farewell to marathon runner

Hundreds of people attended the funeral yesterday of Claire Squires, whose death during the London Marathon resulted in more than £1m being raised for the Samaritans.

James Anderson in action for Lancashire

X-rays give England cricketer James Anderson all-clear

England seamer James Anderson came through an injury scare with nothing more than bruising to his right thumb after returning to county action at Old Trafford this morning.

New deal: Aneesh Kapil is a genuine all-round prospect at Worcestershire

Kapil looks one to watch as he turns on the style

Nottinghamshire 243 & 88-2 Worcestershire 157 (Nottinghamshire lead by 174 runs)

Lancashire's Sajid Mahmood is bowled by Somerset's Vernon Philander at Taunton

Round-up: In-form Compton claims his Lions share

Somerset batsman Nick Compton has been rewarded for his prolific form in a so-far bowler-friendly season with a place in a 12-man England Lions squad to play West Indies at Northampton from 10 May.

Ex-UDM leader Neil Greatrex jailed for charity theft

A former leader of the Union of Democratic Mineworkers has been jailed for four years for stealing almost £150,000 from a charity which cared for elderly miners.

Tom Youngs could gain valuable experience by going South Africa

Untested Youngs could join brother on England's tour

Leicester's rookie hooker Tom Youngs could make his England debut before starting an Aviva Premiership match for his club after being pencilled in for the summer tour of South Africa.

David Randall: So elegant, so refined – and vicious as hell

Swans are magnificent but don't get too close
Northampton winger Calum Clark

Northampton consider appeal over Calum Clark 32 week ban

Northampton say they are "bound to consider the merits of an appeal" after their back-row forward Calum Clark was banned for 32 weeks.

The controversial HS2 high-speed rail project was given the green light today

Plans for HS2 to be published in the autumn

The Government will publish its plans for the second phase of the HS2 high-speed rail project in the autumn, it was announced today.

Melton Mowbray has the highest proportion of accidental deaths

Melton is revealed as accidental death capital of England

The home of the pork pie is hiding a dark secret. Despite its rural charm and world-famous food, Melton has been revealed to be the unluckiest place to live in England.

Winteringham Fields' dining room is contrived to be both cosy and elegant

Winteringham Fields, 1 Silver Street, Winteringham, Lincolnshire

Approaching from the east, the first thing you see in the Lincolnshire village of Winteringham, an isolated straggle of houses on the fringe of the Humber, is a sign that baldly declares 'FERRETS'. It is an unlikely milieu for an upmarket 'restaurant with rooms'. Yet there it is at the heart of the village: a slate-topped, two-storey structure, possibly a former Georgian inn, with pantiled extensions. The facilities include a helipad, but our spirits failed to soar on entering Winteringham Fields. Booked in for Friday lunch (three courses £39.95, four courses £45), my wife and I found ourselves deposited in a small, unpopulated lounge. Our refusal to take a drink before the meal was greeted with an expression of surprise ("Oh!") as if apéritifs were pretty much compulsory.

Bryan Redpath is challenging his side to continue their good form

Quins block Redpath's route to play-offs

Gloucester coach Bryan Redpath has challenged his side to keep their push for a play-off place on track by ending their poor run against Premiership leaders Harlequins at Kingsholm today.

'Exceptionally' mild weather on the way

Tomorrow is expected to be “exceptionally” mild, with temperatures up to 10 degrees Celsius above average for the time of year, forecasters said.

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Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game
There's a Good Girl exhibition: How female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising

In pictures: There's a Good Girl exhibition

The new exhibition reveals how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover - from advent calendars to doll's houses

UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover

It worked with cupcakes, doughnuts and macarons so no wonder someone decided to revamp the humble biscuit
Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

It's no surprise that the building game born in Sweden in 2009 and now played by millions, has imitators keen to construct their own mega money-spinner
The King's School is way ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology

Staying connected: The King's School

The school in Cambridgeshire is ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology. Richard Garner discovers how teachers and pupils stay connected
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Festively fragrant: the best women's perfumes

Give a loved one a luxe fragrance this year or treat yourself to a sensual pick-me-up
Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition

Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund

The Ox celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition
Billy Joe Saunders vs Chris Eubank Jnr: When two worlds collide

When two worlds collide

Traveller Billy Joe Saunders did not have a pampered public-school upbringing - unlike Saturday’s opponent Chris Eubank Jnr
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Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

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