News

Labour backbencher Marsha Singh is to step down as an MP, triggering a by-election in his Bradford West constituency.

Why do we still love the waiting game?

The British ability to queue remains a justified stereotype. As Wimbledon fans line up across south London, David Brake asks if it's a frisson of anticipation or mere politeness that keep us in place

The Prime Ministers Who Never Were, Edited by Francis Beckett

When I was taught history we were told by our headmaster, no less, not to waste time on what he called "the what ifs of history". He reckoned that it was no good asking what would have happened if Anne Boleyn had agreed to sleep with Henry VIII out of wedlock, or if the plot to kill Hitler had succeeded, because no one knows and it is all idle speculation.

Diary: Downing Street's in a tails spin

Well, what a right old pig's ear that was! One minute we were being told by Number 10 that Dave (PM) would be sticking two fingers up to all those silly old snobs insisting he had to wear traditional tails on the day of the royal wedding – the next we hear he'll be donning his Bullingdon best after all. Just as Tory heartlands everywhere were struggling to come to terms with the prospect of their leader embarrassing the nation in such a shoddy fashion, flustered Downing Street lackeys were suddenly spinning a different yarn altogether, insisting the Prime Minister had in fact always intended to embrace his fate on 29 April. Someone, we were pointedly told, had jumped the gun by unofficially suggesting otherwise – someone who hadn't even bothered to check with his boss before opening his big fat stupid mouth!

MPs handed £3.2m expenses payout

MPs were paid £3.2 million in expenses from the final two months of 2010, the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) disclosed today.

Eric Pickles: 'Tories fought 'gentle' by-election campaign

The Conservative Party fought a "gentle" campaign in the first by-election test for the coalition, Communities and Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles said today.

Miliband keeps the champagne on ice as PM faces wrath of Tory right

Conservative leadership accused of pulling punches to protect Clegg as Labour claims result is first step towards rebuilding

Labour win in Oldham deals blow to Coalition

Labour secured an emphatic victory in a crucial first test of its popularity under the leadership of Ed Miliband last night by winning the Oldham East and Saddleworth by-election.

Labour accuses Lib Dems of dirty tricks in Oldham

The Oldham East & Saddleworth by-election descended into acrimony last night as Labour accused the Liberal Democrats of launching personal attacks on their candidate in a last ditch attempt to win the seat.

Leading article: What is and isn't at stake in Oldham East

Today's by-election in Oldham East and Saddleworth is being widely presented as a crucial first test: for the Coalition, for the Liberal Democrats, and for Ed Miliband. Not surprisingly, the Liberal Democrat candidate, Elwyn Watkins, has tried to run his campaign exclusively on local issues, while his Labour opponent, Debbie Abrahams, has tried to elevate it into a referendum on the Government in general, and on Nick Clegg in particular.

Clegg puts in the hours on hustings for by-election

Nick Clegg made a last-minute effort to boost his party's ailing prospects in the Oldham East and Saddleworth by-election yesterday, making a third trip to boost morale ahead of tomorrow's ballot.

Is this the most unusual by-election ever?

With Labour's 'dirty election' win overturned, Brian Brady reports from Oldham East and Saddleworth on fading Lib Dem hopes

Cameron out on the stump – but does he really want to win?

David Cameron made political history yesterday by being the first Prime Minister to go campaigning in a by-election which, it is widely suspected, he is desperate to lose. The Prime Minister did not say that, of course. He insisted that the Conservative candidate, Kashif Ali, and his helpers are out to win Thursday's contest in Oldham East and Saddleworth.

Clegg braves chill on campaign trail – but gets the cold shoulder

Andy McSmith joins the Deputy PM as he goes out and about in Oldham East

Lib Dems roll out big guns for by-election campaign

Campaigning will get under way in earnest this week in the Oldham East and Saddleworth by-election, the first big test of public opinion since the creation of the coalition government.

Village People: Standing out from the crowd in an outstanding year takes true idiocy

To mark the passing of 2010, I bring you the Village Idiot Parliamentary Awards of the Year for outstanding achievement in bringing politics into ridicule or disrepute during a year of many surprises.

Sport
Premier League Live
footballLIVE Follow all the Premier League action as it happens
Life and Style
3D printed bump keys can access almost any lock
gadgets + echSoftware needs photo of lock and not much more
News
i100
News
The slice of Prince Charles and Princess Diana's wedding cake and the original box from 29 July 1981
newsPiece of Charles and Diana's wedding cake sold at auction in US
News
James Argent from Towie is missing, police say
peopleTV star had been reported missing
Arts and Entertainment
Gregg Wallace in Summer's Supermarket Secrets
tv All of this year's 15 contestants have now been named
News
i100(and it's got nothing to do with the Great British Bake Off)
Arts and Entertainment
Inside the gallery at Frederick Bremer School in Walthamstow
tvSimon Usborne goes behind the scenes to watch the latest series
Life and Style
A picture taken on January 12, 2011 shows sex shops at the Paris district of Pigalle.
newsThe industry's trade body issued the moratorium on Friday
Arts and Entertainment
Could we see Iain back in the Bake Off tent next week?
tv Contestant teased Newsnight viewers on potential reappearance
Career Services

Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Ukraine crisis: The phoney war is over as Russian troops and armour pour across the border

The phoney war is over

Russian troops and armour pour into Ukraine
Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

The world’s entire food system is under attack - and Britain is most at risk, according to a new study
Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Seoul's plastic surgery industry is booming thanks to the popularity of the K-Pop look
From Mozart to Orson Welles: Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

After the death of Sandy Wilson, 90, who wrote his only hit musical in his twenties, John Walsh wonders what it's like to peak too soon and go on to live a life more ordinary
Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Fears are mounting that Vladimir Putin has instructed hackers to target banks like JP Morgan
Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years

Salomé: A head for seduction

Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years. Now audiences can meet the Biblical femme fatale in two new stage and screen projects
From Bram Stoker to Stanley Kubrick, the British Library's latest exhibition celebrates all things Gothic

British Library celebrates all things Gothic

Forthcoming exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination will be the UK's largest ever celebration of Gothic literature
The Hard Rock Café's owners are embroiled in a bitter legal dispute - but is the restaurant chain worth fighting for?

Is the Hard Rock Café worth fighting for?

The restaurant chain's owners are currently embroiled in a bitter legal dispute
Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival

In search of Caribbean soul food

Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival
11 best face powders

11 best face powders

Sweep away shiny skin with our pick of the best pressed and loose powder bases
England vs Norway: Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Lack of Englishmen at leading Premier League clubs leaves manager hamstrung
Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

Di Maria and Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

They both inherited the iconic shirt at Old Trafford, but the £59.7m new boy is joining a club in a very different state
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone