Property 2 bedroom flat to rent in Glenloch Road, Belsize Park. On with Benham and Reeves for £475 per week.

Property industry welcomes crackdown on hidden charges in the rental market

Poor areas hit hardest in cuts to council funds

The biggest cuts to police and local councils "in living memory" were yesterday unveiled by ministers with some parts of the country losing almost 10 per cent of their budget in a single year.

Councils told by Government to do 'more with less'

Local councils must continue to provide "reasonable" services to the public despite swingeing cuts in central government funding, Communities Secretary Eric Pickles warned today.

Council job losses set to top 37,000

The number of job losses planned at councils in England and Wales because of Government spending cuts has increased to over 37,000 in recent weeks, a new study revealed today.

Village People: Lembit Opik to reveal feline side in return to limelight

Lembit Opik, the former Liberal Democrat MP, is so ridiculous that he is rather lovable.

Vanity publish and be damned: Why municipal magazines have had their day

Britain's 'town hall Pravdas' are under attack. To the Government, they're a waste of money; to local papers, they're unfair competition.

Denham claims new enterprise partnerships are 'a shambles'

Shadow Business Secretary condemns the low number of businesses covered by LEPs

David Cameron stands by 'fair' housing benefit cap

David Cameron dismissed talk of a climbdown over capping housing benefit today despite claims that the policy could drive 200,000 poor people out of major cities.

Councils conned out of £135m last year

Councils were fleeced of £135 million through nearly 120,000 frauds last year, spending watchdogs said today.

'Super-councils' plan would redraw the map of London

A new generation of super-councils across the country is being backed by Conservative ministers as a means to slash costs and drive up efficiency standards. A cull of smaller councils would inevitably lead to sweeping job losses.

London boroughs study 'super council' merger

Radical proposals to create the UK's first 'super council' were revealed today.

Leading article: Savage cuts and social cohesion

Of all the victims of George Osborne's Comprehensive Spending Review, none have more cause for complaint than local government. Councils are facing a 27 per cent cut in central funding, adjusted for inflation, by 2014-15. That compares with a 3.4 per cent cut for education, a 7.5 per cent cut for defence and a real terms increase for health. And thanks to the Coalition's two year freeze on council tax it will be difficult for councils to raise more money themselves to ease the pressure of this squeeze from the centre.

Andrew Grice: In the end, it was all a bit less bloody than they feared at start

Contrary to expectations, the Star Chamber did not have to hold any minister's feet to the fire

Local Government: More power for councils – but much less money

The good news for council bosses is that they are being given more freedom to spend money as they think best. The bad news is that there will be less of it to spend – much less.

Editor-At-Large: Paying workers to give up their jobs is bad housekeeping

If I get a nasty tax bill and have to cut back on my spending, there are obvious, if unpleasant, measures. Cut up credit cards. Set a daily cash budget and stick to it. Stop shopping, except for essentials. No frocks. Travel off-peak, shop for cheaper energy deals. Not exactly rocket science. To pay off debts you need a simple plan. Families are trimming their expenditure carefully as up to 600,000 public-sector workers face redundancy. So, we are told, is the Government.

One room, nine politicians, Britain's future on the table

In the shadow of Cardinal Wolsey and George III, the Star Chamber is deciding how the spending axe will fall
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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003
Barbara Woodward: Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with the growing economic superpower

Our woman in Beijing builds a new relationship

Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with growing economic power
Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer. But the only British soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross in Afghanistan has both

Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer

Beware of imitations, but the words of the soldier awarded the Victoria Cross were the real thing, says DJ Taylor
Alexander McQueen: The catwalk was a stage for the designer's astonishing and troubling vision

Alexander McQueen's astonishing vision

Ahead of a major retrospective, Alexander Fury talks to the collaborators who helped create the late designer's notorious spectacle
New BBC series savours half a century of food in Britain, from Vesta curries to nouvelle cuisine

Dinner through the decades

A new BBC series challenged Brandon Robshaw and his family to eat their way from the 1950s to the 1990s
Philippa Perry interview: The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course

Philippa Perry interview

The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef recreates the exoticism of the Indonesian stir-fry

Bill Granger's Indonesian stir-fry recipes

Our chef was inspired by the south-east Asian cuisine he encountered as a teenager
Chelsea vs Tottenham: Harry Kane was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope

Harry Kane interview

The striker was at Wembley to see Spurs beat the Blues and win the Capital One Cup - now he's their great hope
The Last Word: For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?

Michael Calvin's Last Word

For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?