Arts and Entertainment Ed Miliband told Kirsty Young his relationship with brother David was 'healing'

Forget policy proposals, it is the choices made by political leaders on Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs that really give the public a chance to see into both their souls and their desire to be seen as accessible.

Soldiers prepare the ceremonial cannons before Margaret Thatcher's funeral

Bishop Rt Rev Tim Ellis warns that £10m cost of Margaret Thatcher's funeral is 'asking for trouble'

A senior Anglican clergyman from Baroness Thatcher’s home town has criticised the cost of her funeral – saying the decision to spend an estimated £10m of public money on the ceremony was a “mistake”.

Anthony Atkinson, Ian McEwan and John le Carré

Nobel Prizes: The other Team GB poised for the podium

After a summer of sporting glory, might Britain punch above its weight in the intellectual Olympics, aka the Nobel Prizes? Team GB has landed 17 Nobels since 2000, among them Sir John Gurdon, who won the prize for physiology or medicine this week.

John Kampfner: I wouldn't think Tony wants to Spice up his life

I have a confession to make that will destroy what cred I ever had. I loved the Spice Girls. When my daughters were small, they would sit glued to the box watching the glammy, glitzy airheads. I was gutted when I couldn't come with them to a concert, but I did make it to a Destiny's Child gig.

Diary: Coogan's critics are hacked off

The fun-loving comedian Steve Coogan must have been feeling rather pleased with himself when he got the chance to twist the knife into his vanquished foes at the News of the World last Friday night. The comic put in an entertaining turn on BBC2's Newsnight and, such was his antipathy towards the tabloid's former hack Paul McMullan, the old charmer even admirably managed not to be distracted by presenter Emily Maitlis's critically acclaimed calves throughout.

Lib Dems move HQ from rabbit warren to 'The Thick of It'

Political plotting is harder in an open-plan office. After three decades, the Liberal Democrats are to quit the wood-panelled rabbit warren of their Cowley Street headquarters for minimalist offices in one of the most exclusive streets in Westminster.

Paddy Ashdown hits out at PM AV campaign

David Cameron was today urged to distance himself from the "deeply personalised" attacks against Nick Clegg by the No to AV campaign.

Diary: Ministry for silly honours

After being reminded that John Cleese can understandably take exception to ill-founded fears his funny bone may have been surgically removed in recent years, I would like to place on record the confident belief his best work could still be ahead of him. (Just pretend it's some other bloke in those rubbish AA adverts). Now the old boy proudly informs us that he wouldn't still be plain old Mr Cleese to you and I, if he had seen fit to accept a peerage from Paddy Ashdown back in 1999.

Labour is No help for Cameron

David Cameron is to take the unprecedented step of joining senior Labour politicians to campaign against the alternative vote, in the clearest sign yet that the No camp fears it could be defeated in next month's referendum.

Village People: Clegg's remote control

Nick Clegg earned plaudits from the former Liberal Democrat leader Paddy Ashdown for his masochistic decision to appear in a television debate with an audience of 20 students.

The Sketch: Standards are slipping, as the Lords debate stuck to party lines

When did the Lords get so dull? Maybe there was more to the hereditary principle than we thought. They still limp, hobble and doze in their attractive way – I feel more and more sympathetic towards them – but last night all the argument fell out on party lines and no one said anything unexpected. That's not right, is it? Paddy Ashdown made the best speech – that's what today's House of Lords is like.

Ministers set to wrangle over cuts to the last minute

The man responsible for overseeing huge spending cuts admitted last night that there was still a "long way to go" to reach a deal over where they would be made.

Sir Cyril Smith: Idiosyncratic and larger-than-life Liberal politician who never shied away from falling out with his own party

Neither Liberals nor Liberal Democrats have much of a record winning seats from Labour in the North of England.

Laws resigns following expenses allegations

The Tory-Liberal Democrat coalition suffered a major blow tonight as David Laws was forced to resign over expenses abuse allegations.

Laws claimed £40,000 to rent rooms from partner

David Laws was embroiled in a damaging row over his expenses last night after it emerged that he had handed his long-term partner tens of thousands of pounds of taxpayers' money.

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Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

How to make your own Easter egg

Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef declares barbecue season open with his twist on a tradtional Easter Sunday lamb lunch

Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

Next weekend, our chef plans to return to his Aussie roots by firing up the barbecue
Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

The England prop relives the highs and lows of last Saturday's remarkable afternoon of Six Nations rugby
Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?

Cricket World Cup 2015

Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?
The Last Word: Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing