News Council tax set to rise by as much as five per cent

The amount paid by households towards the cost of policing looks set to rise by up to five per cent this year as the Government faces a potential show down with its flagship Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) who are demanding above inflation increases in council tax to combat swingeing budget cuts.

On the floor: Houston's 30 licensed strip clubs will have to levy the fee

Strip joint patrons face $5 'pole tax'

Houston levies door fee to pay for the speedier analysis of rape case evidence

David Cameron confronted on visit to flood-hit Todmorden

Prime Minister David Cameron was confronted by a member of the public today as he visited one of the towns affected by the recent devastating floods.

Margaret Hodge: Public Accounts Committee chairman says the controls are not strict enough

Public bodies accused of abusing credit cards

Tougher checks to prevent fraud and abuse when public servants buy goods and services with special purchasing cards have been demanded by spending watchdogs.

Disabled man loses care cost appeal

Judges at the UK's highest court have dismissed a profoundly disabled man's appeal over his care package.

STIs: Diagnoses of increasingly antibiotic-resistant gonorrhoea infections rise by 'unprecedented' 25 per cent

The number of diagnoses of the sexual transmitted infection gonorrhoea has increased by an “unprecedented” 25 per cent in the past year, the Health Protection Agency has revealed.

Parking tickets issued every 4.6 seconds

Local councils handed out an increased number of parking tickets last year despite cutting back on traffic wardens.

Chen's brother flees from home

Chen Guangcheng's brother has fled his closely guarded village in eastern China to seek legal advice in Beijing, his lawyer said.

EuroVegas complex plan spawns protest despite jobs boost

It sounds almost too good to be true: at a time when one in four Spaniards are out of work, for the last few months US casino tycoon Sheldon Adelson has been weighing up whether to build a $21bn (£13.3bn) tourist-cum-gambling resort, being dubbed EuroVegas, outside Madrid or Barcelona. And the chosen city may feel it has hit the jackpot: EuroVegas, it is said, will create up to 250,000 jobs.

Adoptees 'wait 20 months' for home

Children in care in England are forced to wait an average of 20 months to move in with adoptive parents, according to new figures.

The Queen's Speech: More rights for divorced fathers

Fathers look set to be given additional rights to see their children after family break-up or divorce, as long as it is in the child's best interests, under reforms set out in the Queen's Speech.

Thousands march in Tokyo as last atomic plant shuts

Activists celebrate as Japan is nuclear-free for first time in 42 years

Ken Livingstone on his way to hear the election results

Livingstone bows out. But can we believe him?

He has broken promises before. Ken Livingstone once said that being Mayor of London would be his last political job, before he made running for the office a long-term occupation.

Higher pay for academy heads

The average salary for a headteacher at an academy is £6,000 higher than that of a head at a local authority school, the Department for Education has revealed.

Simon Kelner: Local papers are the lifeblood of communities

My first job in journalism was as a trainee reporter in Neath in South Wales. Every Wednesday, when the paper was published, I couldn't walk down the main street without being stopped every few paces by someone eager to discuss – or, more likely, to take issue with – something in that day's paper.

The National Front is staging a comeback amid a rising tide of Islamophobia

National Front aims to revive 70s 'glory days'

In the febrile politics of the 1970s the National Front (NF) ruthlessly exploited working-class fears over immigration to create a far-right threat unseen in Britain since Sir Oswald Mosley.

Life and Style
love + sex A new study has revealed the average size - but does that leave men outside the 'normal' range being thought of as 'abnormal'?
Arts and Entertainment
TV
Voices
The Palace of Westminster is falling down, according to John Bercow
voices..says Matthew Norman
Sport
Steve Bruce and Gus Poyet clash
football
News
Graham Norton said Irish broadcaster RTE’s decision to settle was ‘moronic’
TV
Arts and Entertainment
Jake and Dinos Chapman were motivated by revenge to make 'Bring me the Head of Franco Toselli! '
arts + ents Shapero Modern Gallery to show explicit Chapman Brothers film
Arts and Entertainment
Kurt Cobain performing for 'MTV Unplugged' in New York, shortly before his death
music Brett Morgen's 'Cobain: Montage of Heck' debunks many of the myths
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
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn