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.”

Denton, Manchester - 30 passengers last year

Britain’s ghost trains: The deserted railway stations without any passengers

A lack of travellers – and trains – has left some parts of the rail network surprisingly idle

Murdoch's Sky to take on regional newspapers

Broadcaster launches trial news, sport and events website in Newcastle

HMRC: Plan to close 281 centres and save £13m

HMRC could close all 281 of its enquiry centres, putting 1,300 jobs at risk, as part of a move to save £13m a year.

New jobs on offer rise 12 per cent

Fresh signs of a thaw in Britain's economy emerged from jobs figures that showed the number of new posts in the UK rose by 12 per cent last month.

Donald McCain yesterday with Peddlers Cross and Overturn (right)

Donald McCain backs Overturn to upset Simonsig's standing

His very name anticipates the role to which he is summoned, just 13 days from now, and even punters made to regret taking short odds about the hot favourite would surely find it in their own hearts to admire the mighty one housed in the chest of Overturn.

Aldershot Town’s Danny Hylton celebrates his goal
Labour MP Michael Meacher opened the debate on ATOS, stating that 1,300 people had died after being placed in the “work-related activity group”

Atos told incontinent woman to 'wear nappy': Firm condemned by MPs for pressuring sick and disabled into returning to work

Thousands of sick or disabled people have died after undergoing assessments to find out whether they were fit to work, the House of Commons was told today.

Benefit cheat worked as fitness instructor

A benefits cheat who claimed he could barely walk has been jailed after he was caught working as a leisure centre fitness instructor.

NHS accused of wasting £27m on uneaten hospital food

147,000 meals left unserved in 2011-12 by one NHS trust

Two people in hospital after bridge collapse in Yorkshire

Two people have been hospitalised after a footbridge over a river collapsed in North Yorkshire.

Man arrested over woman's murder after body discovered on Christmas Eve

A man has been arrested on suspicion of murder after a grandmother was found dead in her home on Christmas Eve, police have said.

Neil Black: The mentor who knew how to find winning line

Jim Alder was the man who got Neil Black into athletics and who guided him, as his coach, to victories over Steve Cram and Sebastian Coe. The 72-year-old has long been an inspirational figure in the North-east, the trailblazer who paved the way for Brendan Foster, Mike McLeod, Charlie Spedding and Cram – all Olympic medal winners.

Darren Bent

Paul Lambert denies Aston Villa will sell Darren Bent in January

England striker not even making bench

Police worker Michael Mount cleared of assault after appeal

A civilian detention officer has been cleared of assaulting a prisoner at a police station after an appeal.

Student Liam Byrne 'fortunate' to survive parachute failure

A student who ended up stuck in a tree after falling 3,000ft (914m) when his canopy failed to open on his very first parachute jump was “very fortunate”, firefighters have said.

Life and Style
Steve Shaw shows Kate how to get wet behind the ears and how to align her neck
healthSteven Shaw - the 'Buddha of Breaststroke' - applies Alexander Technique to the watery sport
Arts and Entertainment
The sight of a bucking bronco in the shape of a pink penis was too much for Hollywood actor and gay rights supporter Martin Sheen, prompting him to boycott a scene in the TV series Grace and Frankie
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Terry Sue-Patt as Benny in the BBC children’s soap ‘Grange Hill’
voicesGrace Dent on Grange Hill and Terry Sue-Patt
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Performers drink tea at the Glastonbury festival in 2010
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Twin Peaks stars Joan Chen, Michael Ontkean, Kyle Maclachlan and Piper Laurie
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Cameron Jerome
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Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine