Outlook Raise a glass to Greene King. The pub and restaurant group reported a sparkling 5 per cent increase in sales over Christmas. But fill it with Cava rather than Champagne.

Parliament: Devolution: Brown attempts to strengthen the Union

GORDON BROWN made the Government's most spirited attempt since Scottish devolution to bolster the Union yesterday by announcing a series of joint north-south committees to co-ordinate social and high technology policies.

Watchdog demands transport spending

THE GOVERNMENT'S new transport watchdog began its life yesterday by cocking a snook at the Chancellor of the Exchequer and demanding a ``dramatic'' increase in spending to rid Britain of traffic congestion.

Benefit plan unveiled by Chancellor

NO ONE in work will ever have to visit a benefits office to receive a living income, the Chancellor of the Exchequer said yesterday as he unveiled plans for reform of the tax and benefit system.

Budget: Inheritance/Capital Gains Tax

EACH YEAR, reports of the widespread reform of inheritance and capital gains tax prove much exaggerated and this year was no exception - if anything, the reverse.

Political broadcast by the Best Friends' Party

THE PRIME MINISTER and the Chancellor of the Exchequer made broadcasting history yesterday by being interviewed together on the radio.

Budget day set for 9 March

BUDGET DAY will be on Tuesday 9 March, it was announced yesterday. Responding to questions in the House of Commons, Gordon Brown, Chancellor of the Exchequer, named the day for his third Budget statement and said the government would continue to be disciplined on public spending.

The inheritance hunters

When the wealthy die intestate, it is often the start of some far-reaching investigations. By Paul Slade

GRE injects pounds 300m into PPP in life insurance shake-up

GUARDIAN ROYAL Exchange announced a sweeping restructuring of its life insurance business yesterday in response to months of pressure from the City.

Brown defies critics of forecast

GORDON BROWN, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, has defended his economic forecasts, insisting the economy will slow slightly next year and then recover quickly.

Theatre: Love's Labour's lost


Directors earn `pounds 3,100 a meeting'

THE CHANCELLOR of the Exchequer Gordon Brown came under fire yesterday from the TUC for urging pay restraint at a time when company directors were awarding themselves rises of 18 per cent compared with 4.5 per cent for the whole workforce. Calls for wage restraint needed to be aimed at a "closed shop" of directors who voted each other "huge" pay increases, and not at other employees, a study by the TUC argued.

Letter: Backing the Bank

Sir: Your front page story "Rate cut is `too little, too late' " (9 October) repeats the totally false allegation that the Chancellor was involved in a "covert campaign" to "bounce" the Bank of England to cut rates. Nothing could be further from the truth. There are those, including some in the media, who were opposed to the Bank's independence from the outset and want to undermine that independence by whatever means they can. I assume that was also what lay behind your inside commentary. I can't imagine who your reporter spoke to but it certainly was not me as I have never even met him. This fanciful account contains so many inaccuracies that it is not even worth responding to them.

Leading Article: A big pot of money

POOH WOULD have been amused, Christopher Robin confused and AA Milne would have been appalled. He, poor author, wanted simply to leave something to the Garrick Club which he loved. The members of a club now dominated by the law and media felt they needed to do something under the full glare of media attention with a bequest which had suddenly become valuable. That something has turned out to be to give much of it to charity, which is certainly worthier than sharing it out among the members, as one former Chancellor of the Exchequer had suggested, and is certainly more satisfying to the committee charged with doling out the lolly.

Leading Article: Brown grasps at the holy grail

THE GOLDEN RULE. Sounds mystical, doesn't it? It is the grail that successive Chancellors have grasped at but never quite managed to attain. Put simply, it says that a prudent government, like a wise individual or company, should never borrow to consume, but only to invest. Gordon Brown is the latest politician to seek the grail. He believes that it is the key to sound public finances and the best guarantee for the future of our public services. He is right, and he deserves our support.

Politics: Brown: Budget will be no giveaway

GORDON BROWN yesterday damped down expectations that he was about to embark on a spending spree Budget, with billions of pounds being contributed to working families' childcare costs.
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How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
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Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map
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Lionel, Patti, Burt and The Who rock Glasto

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Paris Fashion Week

Thom Browne's scarecrows offer a rare beacon in commercial offerings
A year of the caliphate:

Isis, a year of the caliphate

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Marks and Spencer

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'We haven't invaded France': Italy's Prime Minister 'reclaims' Europe's highest peak

'We haven't invaded France'

Italy's Prime Minister 'reclaims' Europe's highest peak
Isis in Kobani: Why we ignore the worst of the massacres

Why do we ignore the worst of the massacres?

The West’s determination not to offend its Sunni allies helps Isis and puts us all at risk, says Patrick Cockburn
7/7 bombings 10 years on: Four emergency workers who saved lives recall the shocking day that 52 people were killed

Remembering 7/7 ten years on

Four emergency workers recall their memories of that day – and reveal how it's affected them ever since
Humans: Are the scientists developing robots in danger of replicating the hit Channel 4 drama?

They’re here to help

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Time to lay these myths about the Deep South to rest

Time to lay these myths about the Deep South to rest

'Heritage' is a loaded word in the Dixie, but the Charleston killings show how dangerous it is to cling to a deadly past, says Rupert Cornwell
What exactly does 'one' mean? Court of Appeal passes judgement on thorny mathematical issue

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Court of Appeal passes judgement on thorny mathematical issue