Andy McSmith's Diary: The case of the MP, the police chief and the missing personal apology

As if the police had not already inflicted enough trouble on themselves with the plebgate saga, a Chief Constable had to ‘fess up that his force did not understand the law that protects an MP’s right to speak freely.

The News Matrix: Tuesday 28 January 2014

Teachers at free school to strike

A group of Free Syrian Army fighters carry a wounded comrade to cover; over 16 people have been arrested since the beginning of the year amid rising fears of Britons being linked to fighting in Syria

16 arrested amid fears Britons linked to Syria violence

More than 16 people have been arrested since the beginning of the year amid rising fears of Britons being linked to fighting in Syria, it was reported.

The seven private investigators pleaded guilty to conspiring to unlawfully obtain personal data at Isleworth Crown Court

BBC duped into handing over confidential data on 700 licence-fee payers to ‘blaggers’

Confidential information from top firms illegally accessed

People take part in a simulation entitled 'A Day in the Life of a Refugee: Exploring Solutions for Syria'

The Syrian refugee simulator for billionaires: We try the experience designed to pressure the super-rich into helping

The most agonising choice many attendees of the World Economic Forum in Davos face is whether to go for a Martini or a smooth Riesling at the countless lavish parties that take place after hours.

Lacina Traore looks set to complete a move to Everton, subject to a work permit

Transfer news: Everton at last clinch deal for Monaco forward Lacina Traore

The Ivory Coast international joins on loan until the end of the season

Ofsted chief Michael Wilshaw is speaking sense by saying we should call out bad parenting

Perhaps parent-teacher evenings should, where appropriate, be as much about the parents as about the children

Juan Agudelo

Transfer news: Stoke sign US international Juan Agudelo, but send him out on loan immediately

The Potters failed to get a work permit for the striker

Lacina Traore looks set to complete a move to Everton, subject to a work permit

Transfer news: Roberto Martinez confirms Everton are nearing Lacina Traore deal after move agreed with Monaco

The Toffees manager was speaking after the 1-1 draw with West Brom after beating West Ham to the Ivory Coast international

The News Matrix: Tuesday 21 January 2014

UN withdraws Iran’s invitation to talks

Dad gets letter addressed to 'Daughter Killed In Car Crash'

Recipient actually lived in Illinois, not Daughter Killed In Car Crash

A Thai anti-government protester points a baton towards a building from where protesters suspected a bomb was thrown on an anti-government protest march in Bangkok on 17 January.

Thailand anti-government protests: 31 people injured in Bangkok blast

The explosion in the Thai capital city left the protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban unharmed 

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: Profumo evidence - now you see it, now you don’t

It’s a British first! While it may have been commonplace in the days of Glavlit, the dreaded Soviet censorship organ of the Stalin era, the UK Government may be the only one in modern times to make secret what had previously been public. Labour’s Lord Dubs discovered this when he asked for the release of the transcripts of the 1963 trial of Stephen Ward – the osteopath who introduced Christine Keeler and her lover, the married War Minister John Profumo, and was convicted on what a historian of the period has called the “tainted evidence” of police and others.

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University Edible Garden, Leeds – a sustainable garden in the centre of the university, passers-by can help themselves to the home-grown produce
newsFrom a former custard factory to a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery
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fashionHealth concerns and 'pornified' perceptions have made women more conscious at the beach
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Ojo Onaolapo celebrates winning the bronze medal
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Rock band Led Zeppelin in the early 1970s
musicLed Zeppelin to release alternative Stairway To Heaven after 43 years
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High-flyer: Chris Pratt in 'Guardians of the Galaxy'
filmHe was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
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Van Gaal said that his challenge in taking over Bobby Robson's Barcelona team in 1993 has been easier than the task of resurrecting the current United side
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

Feather dust-up

A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
Boris Johnson's war on diesel

Boris Johnson's war on diesel

11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
5 best waterproof cameras

Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

Louis van Gaal interview

Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

Will Gore: Outside Edge

The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz