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.

Leighton Baines could receive a new contract as reward for his loyalty to Everton over Manchester United pursuit

United wanted England star to hand in transfer request to force a move to Old Trafford but 28-year-old was still at Goodison Park when the transfer window closed

Manchester robbery: Pensioner, 87, dies in hospital after being beaten in his home

Frank Worsley was woken up by an intruder who broke into his house

Housing staff ‘may be target of bedroom tax protests’

Staff at a housing association have been warned against wearing their uniforms outside working hours for fear of being attacked by anti-bedroom tax protesters.

Ashes 2013: Alastair Cook confident Kevin Pietersen will be fit for third Test

Calf complaint has made batsman a doubt

Shinji Kagawa shakes hands with his manager Jurgen Klopp during his time at Borussia Dortmund

Transfer news: Manchester United forward Shinji Kagawa rejected chance to re-join Borussia Dortmund reveals Jurgen Klopp

Kagawa has spoken about a desire to return to Dortmund one day but for now his focus is on United

Michael Cope was arrested on Friday night after police were called to an address in Leigh, Greater Manchester

Fugitive Michael Cope charged with murder of ex-girlfriend Linzi Ashton

A wanted man who handed himself in after nearly a month on the run has been charged with the murder of his ex-girlfriend.

Ashes 2013: Kevin Pietersen still doubtful for Old Trafford Test

England are continuing their anxious wait over Kevin Pietersen’s fitness for the third Test in the Ashes series.

Lightning at Poole Harbour; violent thunderstorms are expected over weekend getaway

Weather warning: Britain braces itself for worst weekend of the year to be on the roads

Severe weather warning as 'torrential rain' disrupts holiday getaway traffic for millions

Two teenage girls arrested in connection with Manchester blaze that killed fireman Stephen Hunt

Firefighter Stephen Hunt was part of a team responding to a fire at Paul's Hair World in Oldham Street

Man is arrested in connection with assisting an offender by police looking for Michael Cope

Michael Cope is wanted by Greater Manchester Police in connection with the murder of mother-of-two Linzi Ashton

Joan Smith: 'Until Hall suddenly changed his plea to guilty, he lied through his teeth about his assaults on girls'

BBC veteran Stuart Hall to be sentenced for sex assaults

Hall initially denied the allegations as 'pernicious, callous, cruel and above all spurious'

Zak Hardaker: I want Tomkins' position

Zak Hardaker, who will revert to full-back tonight for Leeds in their rearranged Super League match against Widnes, has insisted he will fight for a starting full-back place for England with the autumn World Cup on the horizon.

England captain Kevin Sinfield attempts to break the tackle of Sia Soliola

England defeat Exiles but fears over captain Kevin Sinfield

Steve McNamara's side record 30-10 victory but both Sinfield and Gareth Ellis leave with nasty looking injuries

Essex v Lancashire match report: Essex skittled for just 20 on day of humiliation

Essex 273 & 20 (Mickleburgh 10; Chapple 5-9); Lancashire 398 (Katich 122; Masters); 4-72 Lancashire win by an innings and 105 runs

Owen Coyle

Wigan confirm Owen Coyle will succeed Roberto Martinez after the former Bolton manager beats Steve McLaren to the post

The Scot returns to management following his dismissal by Bolton last year

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Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before