Life and Style ban would only affect England

Health campaigners say ban could protect nearly half a million children who are exposed second-hand smoke every week

Peers drop equality bill challenge

Peers today dropped a challenge to the lifting of a ban on gays and lesbians holding civil partnership ceremonies in churches.

Single-parent plan 'will hit poor'

The Government is being pressured to reconsider a plan to charge single parents fees to obtain child maintenance payments from ex-partners.

Second U-turn over the 'bonfire of quangos' saves Youth Justice Board

The Government has reversed plans to scrap the Youth Justice Board as part of its much-publicised "bonfire of the quangos". In a second U-turn in as many days, the Department of Justice said that the board – which oversees the detention and rehabilitation of young offenders – would be reprieved.

Errors & Omissions: Some words should never leave the backwoods of America

The foundations of formality are shifting.

Lords report calls for new drive to curb spread of HIV

Twenty-five years after the first national campaign against Aids warned "Don't die of ignorance," a Lords committee has called for a new drive to curb the spread of the disease.

Fertility chief's scathing attack on anti-abortion campaigners

Pro-choice campaigners are fearful about a step-by-step attempt to tighten up service provision

The Sketch: Salvoes on reform bring out lordly left's conservative side

There may be new readers unfamiliar with the remark of that toriest of Tories, Lord Salisbury, so here it is again: "What do we need change for," he said. "Aren't things bad enough as they are?"

Labour delivers blow to Clegg's Lords plans

Nick Clegg's plans to create an elected House of Lords suffered a big setback last night when Labour vowed to oppose the shake-up and peers from all parties lined up to attack it.

Baroness Cox: 'If we ignore wrongs, we condone them'

When Baroness Cox takes up a cause, she invariably courts controversy. Her latest – a campaign against sharia law – is no exception. Jerome Taylor meets her

Revealed: 137 'silent peers' who make the case for reform

Nearly 140 members of the House of Lords have not spoken or asked a question in Parliament for at least a year. The presence of dozens of silent peers, who are all entitled to the privileges of membership, is one of the arguments used to counter those who say the House of Lords works well and does not need reform.

Restraint used on young offenders is 'too harsh'

Ministers will be put under unprecedented pressure this week to outlaw forms of physical restraint currently used against young offenders, when the Chief Inspector of Prisons will insist painful control techniques should never be used again.

The Earl of Onslow: Colourful hereditary peer who advocated reform of the House of Lords

It is a measure both of Michael Onslow's courage and tireless sense of duty that within weeks of his death from cancer he was still active in the Lords; his last speech was made only three weeks before he died. Paradoxically, although he served it well, he thought the House of Lords was well past its sell-by date.

'Horrified' Lord Hanningfield defends expenses claims

A Tory peer accused of expenses fraud said today he believed he was entitled to the money because most other members of the House of Lords claimed the full amount available.

Andreas Whittam Smith: A more 'democratic' Lords can only damage the Commons

If we believe we have a legitimate system of government - and the evidence is that we do - then there is no case for major constitutional change
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John Palmer: 'Goldfinger' of British crime was murdered, say police

Murder of the Brink’s-MAT mastermind

'Goldfinger' of British crime's life ended in a blaze of bullets, say police
Forget little green men - aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert

Forget little green men

Leading evolutionary biologist says aliens will look like humans
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: An Algerian scientist adjusts to life working in a kebab shop

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

An Algerian scientist struggles to adjust to her new life working in a Scottish kebab shop
Bodyworlds museum: Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy

Dying dream of Doctor Death

Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy
UK heatwave: Temperature reaches 39.8 degrees on Central Line - the sweatiest place in London

39.8 degrees recorded on Tube

There's hot (London) and too damn hot (the Underground). Simon Usborne braved the Central line to discover what its passengers suffer
Kitchens go hi-tech: From robot chefs to recipe-shopping apps, computerised cooking is coming

Computerised cooking is coming

From apps that automatically make shopping lists from your recipe books to smart ovens and robot chefs, Kevin Maney rounds up innovations to make your mouth water
Jessie Cave interview: The Harry Potter star has published a feminist collection of cartoons

Jessie Cave's feminist cartoons

The Harry Potter star tells Alice Jones how a one-night stand changed her life
Football Beyond Borders: Even the most distruptive pupils score at homework club

Education: Football Beyond Borders

Add football to an after-school homework club, and even the naughtiest boys can score
10 best barbecue books

Fire up the barbie: 10 best barbecue books

We've got Bibles to get you grilling and smoking like a true south American pro
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Junk balls and chop and slice are only way 5ft 1in Kurumi Nara can live with Petra Kvitova’s power

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

Junk balls and chop and slice are only way 5ft 1in Kurumi Nara can live with Petra Kvitova’s power
Ron Dennis exclusive: ‘This is one of the best McLaren teams ever – we are going to do it’

‘This is one of the best McLaren teams ever – we are going to do it’

Ron Dennis shrugs off a poor start to the season in an exclusive interview, and says the glory days will come back
Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most