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.

Amir Khan lands a punch on Carlos Molina

Boxing: All goes according to plan in latest Amir Khan adventure

Flawless matchmaking helps relationship with new trainer Hunter get off to a promising start

Editorial: Obama's chance to act on guns

The President has shown that he can make progress through compromise

Boxing day murderer 'Psycho' Keiran Stapleton attacks prison chaplain

A murderer who labelled himself “Psycho” after murdering an Indian student in the street has tried to attack a prison chaplain.

Council set to axe another 900 jobs

Up to 900 full-time posts are set to be axed at a city council less than two years after 2,000 jobs were cut.

Rescued: The scene in Somerset yesterday

Flood risk rises as more heavy rain is forecast

Storms expected to carry on into this week

Alec Bell, 66, Philosophy: “There is a gap between the generations now and adult education seems to have ceased to exist. I will be teaching philosophy from January. I will initially offer two-hour introductory lessons related to the basics: how we feel about life, and things like that.”

Meet the Amazings! Keeping knowledge alive

Older people with special skills are teaching the younger generation via an online marketplace

Sir Cyril Smith, flanked by Alan Beith (left) and Paddy Ashdown, in
the Commons, where he spent 20 years as the outspoken MP for his home town Rochdale

Sir Cyril Smith sex abuse allegations: Police to reinvestigate claims former Liberal Democrat MP molested young boys

Greater Manchester Police said it would be investigating allegations that Smith molested boys at a hostel from 1974 onwards, while Lancashire Police said it will investigate claims before 1974

Shafilea Ahmed's parents have been convicted of killing her

Shafilea Ahmed's sister avoids jail after judge describes “extraordinary and terrifying story” as a “case for mercy”

The sister of honour killing victim Shafilea Ahmed was spared jail today when she was given a 12-month suspended sentence for organising a robbery at her parents' house.

Eric Taplin

Eric Taplin: Pioneering historian of dock labour

No social historian of 19th-century Britain and no expert of labour history in port cities will fail to have read Eric Taplin's pathbreaking 1986 work The Docker's Union: a study of the National Union of Dock Labourers 1889-1922. It shifted the focus of British labour history from artisan elites and factory workers to the casual labour forces and labour markets that dominated Britain's major cities after the industrial revolution. Such workers had until then failed to find their historian.

Man's body found in Lancashire after 2005 murder

Police have found a body in the hunt for a man whose disappearance seven years ago resulted in his girlfriend's ex-husband being jailed for murder.

Jimmy Savile's former flatmate Ray Teret released on bail

Jimmy Savile's former flatmate and chauffeur was released on bail today after he was arrested over historic abuse allegations.

Accrington Stanley appoint Leam Richardson as manager

Accrington have appointed Leam Richardson as their new manager.

Javier Hernandez’s spectacular diving header put United back on track

United are shaken but not stirred

Since lifting the European Cup in Moscow four years ago, Manchester United have had an awful lot of trouble with teams beginning with B. They have been knocked out of the competition in successive seasons by Barcelona (twice), Bayern Munich and Basle – and last night they came close to embarrassment against Braga.

Sir Norman Bettison, West Yorkshire's chief constable, faces call to resign

Bettison 'must go now' over Hillsborough says former police authority head

West Yorkshire Chief Constable Sir Norman Bettison should stand down now, according to the man who chaired his police authority until a fortnight ago.

Pair quizzed over house-fire deaths in North Wales as police name victims

Police have named a woman and two young children who died in a house fire as they continue to question their neighbours on suspicion of murder.

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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