Ethical gyms flex their muscles with £14.99 membership fee

Bridges Ventures, the socially aware private equity firm backed by the Apax founder Sir Ronald Cohen and Tom Singh of retail chain New Look, will begin an assault on the UK fitness market tomorrow when 'The Gym' is launched, charging customers just £14.99 a month with no contract or joining fee. The group's first business, in Hounslow, west London, will be open 24 hours a day and has already secured 5,000 members, who have signed up at the discounted £9.99-a-month tariff.

The Meaning of Life, By Terry Eagleton

Eagleton pre-emptively announces on page one that he's not a philosopher, but anyone tackling this subject is de facto a philosopher; the question is, how good? Eagleton indulges in some needlessly laboured analysis of terms, but is less interested in philosophical argument than in sticking it to his enemies, those pesky liberal humanists.

Surrey 326 & 227 Somerset 446 & 111-2: Hurry's work ethic helps Somerset rush to the top

That Somerset have marched up the County Championship to the top of the First Division should surprise no one, given the nature of the two men leading them.

Jeremy Warner's Outlook: Not much of a Woolf at the BAE door

Can the arms trade ever be given an ethical face? It seems a contradiction in terms, yet that hasn't stopped BAE Systems, stung by allegations of corruption over the Al Yamamah arms contract with Saudi Arabia, from commissioning Lord Woolf, a former Lord Chief Justice, to examine its conduct and suggest areas for improvement.

BAE review warns over ethics

A report into business practices at BAE Systems today said the firm admitted it previously failed to "pay sufficient attention" to ethical standards and avoid activities that had the potential to damage its reputation.

Humanism to be added to GCSE religious studies

The study of humanism is to form part of the syllabus for a GCSE in religious studies for the first time, one of the biggest exam boards will announce today.

MMR doctor admits he was unaware of child ethics rules

The doctor who triggered the MMR vaccine scare has said he had little experience of research on children and was unfamiliar with the ethical guidelines surrounding their treatment.

Mother denied daughter's organs

A woman in need of a kidney transplant has been told by medical authorities that she does not have the right to her dead daughter's organs, which have already been passed on to strangers.

Doctor who began MMR scare stands by research

The doctor who linked MMR vaccine with autism, triggering a collapse in vaccination rates, has defended his research, saying he adhered at all times to official ethical guidelines.

Labour MPs to get free vote on parts of embryo Bill

Labour MPs will be allowed a free vote on some controversial aspects of new embryology laws, Gordon Brown said today.

Big rise in ethical investments

The number of people considering investing in ethical investment funds has shot up over the last year, as a raft of new product launches has helped to drive a new boom in the sector.

Ethical: Uttarakhand, India

For many people, the most rewarding aspect of travel is experiencing other cultures. However, too often those other cultures are not themselves rewarded, the tourist's money going straight into the tour operator's pocket.

When did England last play well?

England's performance against Macedonia on Saturday was awful, but hardly unusual. Glenn Moore asks why England's 'golden generation' have turned into a bunch of serial under-achievers

First UK face transplants get go-ahead

London surgeons expected to win approval from ethics experts to carry out operations on four patients

Simon Carr: The Kitchen Capitalist

The story so far: the author has sold his house to finance a manufacturing project in the hope of making a small fortune to finance his old age...

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Homeless Veterans charity auction: Cook with Angela Hartnett and Neil Borthwick at Merchants Tavern
charity appealTime is running out to secure your favourite lot as our auction closes at 2pm tomorrow
Arts and Entertainment
J Jefferson Farjeon at home in 1953
booksBooksellers say readers are turning away from modern thrillers and back to golden age of crime writing
Sport
Amir Khan is engaged in a broader battle than attempting to win a fight with Floyd Mayweather
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Stacey Dooley was the only woman to be nominated in last month’s Grierson awards
mediaClare Balding and Davina McCall among those overlooked for Grierson awards
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Joseph Kynaston Reeves arguing with Russell Brand outside the RBS’s London offices on Friday
voicesDJ Taylor: The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a worker's rant to Russell Brand
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Twitchers see things differently, depending on their gender
scienceNew study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
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Caroline Flack became the tenth winner of Strictly Come Dancing
tvReview: 'Absolutely phenomenal' Xtra Factor presenter wins Strictly Come Dancing final
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A still from the 1939 film version of Margaret Mitchell's 'Gone with the Wind'
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Xander van der Burgt, at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
scienceA Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
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The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick