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When the CBI director-general, John Cridland, took the top job at the UK’s biggest business lobbying group in February 2011, his ambition was to find a fitting new home for the organisation: in his words, a “modest palace of glass and steel”.

Olympic rings adorn Tower Bridge

Giant Olympic rings became the crowning glory on Tower Bridge today to mark the countdown to the London 2012 Games.

Knowingly underpaid? John Lewis hit by cleaners' protest

Workers at co-operative told they will lose their jobs or have their hours cut by half

Andrew Mitchell: Moved to tears

Summit to pledge £1.5bn

Last summer Andrew Mitchell, the International Development Secretary, was reduced to tears as he watched the joy of Claudine, a Rwandan mother of five, when she was told she was not going to have another child.

Loser wins: Dwain Chambers (left) beat Adam Gemili yesterday but second place still earned the teenager his Olympic berth

Chambers says sorry for F-word TV outburst

Controversial veteran beats rising star of British sprinting but fails to make Olympic qualifying standard

War of the Red Roses as Flintoff hits Athers with verbal bouncer

You would have thought that as two Lancashire legends they could be the best of buddies, but there is clearly no love lost between Andrew Flintoff and Michael Atherton.

Downing Street: No imminent plans to disclose David Cameron's tax details

David Cameron and senior ministers are not planning to disclose their tax returns in the “very near future”, Downing Street indicated today.

Olympics news you may have missed...

Tonia Couch has been granted leave to appeal her omission by Team GB for the 10m platform diving at the London Games.

Malek Mohammed prepares for a training swim in Kabul

Poverty or bad luck no barriers to hope for young Afghan swimmer

Malek Mohammed was gathering firewood when he stepped on a buried remnant of Afghanistan's turbulent past. The landmine severed his right leg and flung him into the air.

Fire crews battle south-east London factory blaze

Around 70 firefighters are tackling a blaze at a factory today.

Rents grind down Starbucks

Starbucks UK has blamed high rents and a hefty royalty payment to its US parent for its fifth consecutive year of losses.

Zara to open record fifth Oxford St store

The fashion chain Zara plans to open a record fifth store on London's Oxford Street, reinforcing the buoyant demand for prime retail property in the capital.

Leading article: A poor example set by London

Alongside the council elections on Thursday, some 10 British cities will be voting on whether they want an elected mayor. It is to be hoped that they all vote "yes". At their best, mayors are not only a dynamic addition to local democracy, they are powerful figureheads for their city's identity and can help to reinvigorate slumping public interest in politics.

ROADKILL: Up to 100,000 foxes are killed by British drivers annually

Tally ho! Everything you need to know about urban foxes

As the biggest national survey begins on Channel 4 tomorrow, Sarah Morrison separates reality from myth

Katy Guest: Rant & Rave (29/04/12)

Rant

A People's History of London, By John Rees & Lindsey German

What do we want? A touch more passion

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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