News

A group representing 11 local authorities has written to Chancellor George Osborne expressing its serious concerns about the possible closure of a major museum in the north of England.

From left: Nicola, Kimberley, Cheryl, Nadine and Sarah

A plea to Girls Aloud: Don't split up!

Boo to all you music snobs. Girls Aloud deliver great pop music, and that's what they're there for

Bill Gates reviews a solar-powered lavatory at the Reinventing the Toilet fair

First he reinvented computers, now Bill Gates wants to reinvent the toilet

The world's richest man has set himself a new challenge – to improve sanitation for the poor

Milly Dowler 'tried to cut her wrists'

Murdered Milly Dowler made a half-hearted attempt to cut her wrists after being called names when she started her secondary school, the Old Bailey heard today.

Les Misérables, Barbican Theatre, London

There are ghosts and survivor's guilt in the second act of Les Misérables that sound like a trailer for the upcoming stage adaptation of Birdsong; Victor Hugo's Marius (played by pop idol Gareth Gates) comes through the carnage on the Paris barricades and sings of empty chairs and tables in the ABC café while his friends materialise in a celestial, supportive chorus.

Dave Pollock: Sadly, X Factor is all part of Cowell's plan to own pop music

An air of depressing inevitability hangs over The X Factor winner Joe McElderry's version of Miley Cyrus' "The Climb" as it grinds its way to the Christmas No 1 slot next week. There will be those who remember when guessing the holder of the festive top spot was a bit of seasonal fun, before Simon Cowell annexed it as part of his masterplan to own pop music.

Letters: Palestine and the West

West shares the blame for exile of the Palestinians

Balls launches help for fellow stammerers

It was, Ed Balls said, a “particularly difficult” speech for him to make.

'Slumdog' star writes memoir – at the age of nine

Rubina Ali, one of the young stars of the Oscar-winning film, is making publishing history with an account of her unexpected rise to fame

A new protest song: Joan Baez - she shall overcome

A veteran of 40 years of demonstrations, the American folk singer's latest campaign involves camping in a tree to save a 14-acre farm from the developers. Andrew Buncombe reports

Hey Nostradamus! By Douglas Coupland

It's like watching Mike Tyson pummel Gareth Gates

John Otway: Fans with a plan for their man

You're 50 and you want a chart hit. How do you do it? John Otway tells Mary Novakovich the answer
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
3.	Provence 6 nights B&B by train from £599pp
Prices correct as of 20 February 2015
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?
HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review