News George Osborne is said to have paid £100 an hour to be trained by a Harley Street vocal specialist during his days as shadow Chancellor

George Osborne is said to have paid £100 an hour to be trained by a Harley Street vocal specialist during his days as shadow Chancellor, to help him sound weighty and authoritative. But did he get his money’s worth? After listening to the Chancellor’s speech on Monday, the Labour MP Jamie Reed seemed to think not. He tweeted: “Can someone please reintroduce Osborne to ‘t’ as a consonant? Cos I godda dell ya, that speech made me wanna scream.”

Britain: Back to barracks in Roman Tyne and Wear

Time and weather have been cruel to much of Britain's Roman past. But at South Shields, there is a wonderful opportunity to look up, not down, at our classical heritage, writes

Hockey: Whitley Bay stand defiant

Whitley Bay are not exactly looking forward to their three and a half hour trip to Crosby tomorrow for their North Second Division game, but it is nothing compared with the journey Clifton, last year's Cup finalists, will have to make to Northumberland to play them in the women's EHA Cup fourth-round tie on Sunday.

Letter: Turn it up - it's Mandelson!

Maybe Mr Mandelson has inherited his arrogance from his maternal grandfather, Herbert Morrison, who was a minister in the post-war Attlee government. It was Morrison, after all, who boasted that the Tories would never be able to "unscramble" the newly nationalised industries.

North and South tussle over fate of gospels

The Lindisfarne Gospels are becoming to the North-East of England what the Elgin marbles represent to Greece.

Factory worker wins RSI damages

A former clothing factory worker whose job left her permanently disabled and in constant pain was last night celebrating a pounds 54,000 award. Sewing machinist Michelle Hardy, 26, of Jarrow, south Tyneside, won the out-of-court settlement after Claremont Garments accepted liability for the tenosynovitis - repetitive stress injury - which has prevented her from working since 1991.

Threats to RSPCA man

An RSPCA inspector is being rehoused as "a matter of urgency" after his anti-animal cruelty work led to threats of violence.

Anglian claims tax will hit bills

Anglian Water, one of the largest privatised water companies, yesterday accused the Government of dishonesty over claims the windfall utility tax would not lead to higher customers bills.

Obituary: Ossie O'Brien

Ossie O'Brien was an MP for 11 weeks and one day. Yet, during the Darlington by-election, the curtain-raiser to the 1983 general election, and in his fleeting days as an MP he won the affection of his colleagues. Roy Hattersley described him as the best by-election candidate of the decade.

Ex-Labour MP dies, 77

The former Labour MP Ted Leadbitter, 77, has died after a road accident.

Race bias win for white man

A white worker was unlawfully discriminated against by a racial equality council which gave a post for which he was better qualified to an Asian woman, it was disclosed last night.

Racing: `Lazy' Daley at the double

Victories by Aly Daley (6-1) and Tom Brodie (7-4) made it three wins in two racing days for Crook, Co Durham, trainer Howard Johnson.

`Nervous wrecks' find the cure


Roseberry resigns as Durham captain


Letter: Army guns blight Northumberland

Sir: One questions whether Stephen Goodwin has ever visited the wilder parts of Northumberland. How can the area of "rolling moorland" around Otterburn Ranges be thought to rival the sweep of Hadrian's Wall with its loughs and crags, or the hills and dales around the Cheviot? There is open public access to the ranges during the whole of the lambing season (15 April to 15 May) but few people take advantage of this. There are much greater attractions elsewhere in this lovely county, both inside and out of the national park.

Letter: Just relax

Sir: Bernice Weston's Age Power (report, 4 July) seems hardly more than an attempt to market manic activity as an elixir. When over the hill you do indeed gather speed. You also get a clear view of what is at the bottom. If the over-fifties feel bad about the future it is because they simply regret the human condition, not that there is insufficient to do. I strongly advise them to avoid this fatuous enterprise and recover the innate human aptitude for indolence.
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Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam