News Under the Mental Health Act, police can take anyone they suspect to be mentally ill and a potential danger to themselves or others to a “place of safety”, which can mean a police station

Almost 700 children detained under the Mental Health Act have been put in police cells over the last two years

Devon and Cornwall Police 'shelve 40% of crimes due to cuts'

Nearly half of a region's reported crime was not investigated last year following cuts to a police force's budget, it was said today.

250 foreign criminals escape deportation

The Home Office allowed 250 foreign criminals who should have been deported at the end of their prison sentences to stay in Britain without their cases being considered by a court, it was reported today.

Hundreds of thousands of 11-year-olds leaving primary school unable to swim

More than 200,000 11-year-olds quit primary school every year unable to swim, according to a report out today.

NHS reform risk report veto is sign of freedom of information downgrade, says watchdog

Blocking the publication of a report into the risks of NHS reforms is a sign that ministers want to downgrade freedom of information laws, a watchdog has warned.

Cabinet to veto publication of internal risk assessment of the Government's contentious NHS reforms

The Cabinet is to veto the publication of an internal risk assessment of the Government's contentious NHS reforms, it was announced today.

NHS reform risk report to remain secret

Health Secretary Andrew Lansley vetoed the publication of a confidential risk assessment of the Government's contentious NHS reforms today.

Six fines issued for data breaches

Six public bodies were fined over personal data security breaches in the last year despite hundreds of reported cases, a report said today.

Jack Straw has denied complicity in the rendition of Abdelhakim Belhaj

CIA wins fight to keep MPs in dark on rendition

Court keeps UK role secret – as No 10 calls for police to question Labour ministers

Leading article: Seeing through transparency

There are some things no politician can be against: equality used to be the most fashionable aspiration, now it's transparency. Indeed, on the basis that no one could argue for its converse, opacity, we are all in favour of transparency now. There was once a time when the emperor's new clothes made him look ridiculous; today it's all the rage for those who govern to parade naked.

Outcry at betrayal of domestic violence victims

Spending falls by one-third as a result of Coalition cuts

Michael Gove also wants to shorten the summer holidays

Michael Gove loses FOI battle over emails

Education Secretary Michael Gove today lost the latest round in his freedom of information battle to keep details of emails from his personal account secret.

Supreme Court finds in favour of BBC in Middle East analysis case

A widow’s battle to win her late husband’s struggle to get the BBC to reveal analysis of its Middle East coverage was thwarted today when the Supreme Court found in favour of the corporation.

Government acts over loan chief's tax dodge

The Government today said it was ending a deal under which the head of the Student Loans Company has been paid via a company without tax being deducted.

Simon Kelner: The badge of honour that is refusing a royal gong

All around us, we see the evidence that we are a much more open society than we were, say, 20 years ago. It is in the everyday things, like, for instance, the information we are given on public transport.

Met spent £35,000 to find out time

Britain's biggest police force spent more than £35,000 on 110,000 calls to the speaking clock over the last two years, figures have shown.

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Mickey Rourke celebrates his victory against opponent Elliot Seymour
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Gordon and Tana Ramsay arrive at the High Court, London
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Actor Burt Reynolds last year
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Johnny Handle, Northumberland, Ted Relph, President of Lakeland Dialect Society, and Sid Calderbank, Lancashire, founder of the National Dialect Day
newsMeet the enthusiasts determined to stop them dying out
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The data shows that the number of “unlawfully” large infant classes has doubled in the last 12 months alone
i100Mike Stuchbery, a teacher in Great Yarmouth, said he received abuse
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filmsThe first glimpse of JJ Abrams' new film has been released online
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The Speaker of the House will takes his turn as guest editor of the Today programme
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Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
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