Now the real economic pain starts: yes, it's 'worse-off Wednesday'

The longest squeeze in British living standards in almost a century intensifies today – which has been dubbed 'worse-off Wednesday' because it marks the beginning of a tax year in which tax increases and benefits and public-sector cuts will add to the misery already experienced by the millions struggling to cope with high inflation and minimal pay rises. Put simply, the 2011-12 fiscal year will be the first full year of Coalition cuts, and the one when the pain begins in earnest.

Nicky Campbell: Don't talk to me about the West Kent Hunt

The first time it happened, it was one of those feelings where your whole life goes before you; a chill, almost like death inside. I couldn't believe I'd said it – such a taboo word.

Police 'kettling' tactic angers protesters

Police risked controversy today as they "kettled" several hundred protesters after clashes during student tuition fee protests.

Clinging on and on the way up: A tale of two fan clubs

Both run by supporters but with wildly differing results on and off the field, Ebbsfleet and AFC Wimbledon meet in the FA Cup tonight. Glenn Moore looks at two new-model outfits

Dartford's Green Army march on to new ground

Britain's first eco-friendly arena will be in the FA Cup spotlight when Port Vale arrive at Princes Park tomorrow

Ruck and Maul: Incident which blinded Quinnell in one eye is investigated by police and WRU

It is not clear yet whether the Welsh Rugby Union's investigation into Llanelli's citing of a stamp during the match at Cross Keys which cost the Scarlets' Gavin Quinnell the sight in his left eye will wait for Gwent police to complete their inquiries into an allegation of assault. In England, the Gravesend player Clarence Harding was blinded in one eye last January by what he alleged was a gouge while playing against Maidstone. Police took evidence but according to Maidstone RFC, who have not disciplined any player, the police concluded there was "insufficient evidence to refer the matter to the Crown Prosecution Service". Nine months on, an RFU disciplinary hearing is pending.

Mother wins NHS gastric band case

A sixteen-stone woman denied gastric band treatment on the NHS has used a judicial review to reverse the decision.

Simon Read: Savers - beware rip-off rates

How many savers have cash in low-paying accounts? I suspect it's millions. Banks and building societies have become notorious for slyly cutting rates on once high-paying accounts, leaving loyal customers getting paltry returns.

21 years for Broadmoor patient who killed two women

A "sadistic" Broadmoor patient was jailed for a minimum of 21 years today after pleading guilty to killing two women more than 12 years ago and attacking two others for sexual kicks.

Health alert as Britain swelters

There were sweltering temperatures in parts of Britain today as the first heat-health alert of the summer came into force.

Church pays out to woman sedated as child

The Church of England has paid "substantial" damages to a woman who claimed she was heavily sedated during her time at a children's home, it was disclosed today.

Warm weather set to stay for most of UK

Much of the UK will stay very warm this week after the country sweltered on its hottest day of the year.

Britain hotter than the Med

Soaring temperatures provided the perfect excuse to spend a day at the beach as Britain sweltered on the hottest day of the year so far.

Pair admit £1m house repairs con

Two men admitted swindling more than £1 million out of people by conning them into paying for costly and unnecessary building work to their homes when they appeared in court today.

Bruma gives perfect riposte to Devine intervention

Aston Villa U18s 1 Chelsea U18s 1
News
news
News
The cartoon depicts the UK (far left) walking around a Syrian child refugee
newsIn an exclusive artwork for The Independent, Ali Ferzat attacks Britain's lack of 'humanity'
Life and Style
Man taking selfie in front of car
health
Arts and Entertainment
British author Helen Macdonald, pictured with Costa book of the year, 'H is for Hawk'
booksPanel hail Helen Macdonald's 'brilliantly written, muscular prose' in memoir of a grief-stricken daughter who became obsessed with training a goshawk
Sport
footballDefender's extra-time header in Capital One Cup semi-final sends Blues to Wembley
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Frozen out: despite being filmed in Iceland, 'Fortitude' is set further north, in the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard
arts + ents
News
i100
Life and Style
Carmen Khu from The Royal China Club pours a cup of Dai-Hong-Po tea
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
film
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 23 January 2015
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Homeless Veterans appeal: Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story

Homeless Veterans appeal

Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story
Front National family feud? Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks

Front National family feud?

Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks
Woman who was sent to three Nazi death camps describes how she escaped the gas chamber

Auschwitz liberation 70th anniversary

Woman sent to three Nazi death camps describes surviving gas chamber
DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

The inside track on France's trial of the year

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
As provocative now as they ever were

Sarah Kane season

Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century