Conservative halve Labour’s poll lead

Work smarter and harder and longer to find your dream

Downshifting doesn't mean packing in a stressful job for a life of tranquil idyll. Meg Carter and Rachelle Thackray talk to people who made the jump and never looked back

There's big bread in sandwiches

We spend pounds 3bn a year on them, reports Melanie Clulow

Wednesday's book: Before I Say Goodbye by Ruth Picardie (Penguin, pounds 5.99)

Ruth Picardie's liberal parents left South Africa in the "ugly aftermath of Sharpeville", writes her husband, Matt Seaton, in the preface to this book by and about his deceased wife. The family had to contend with another sort of injustice when Ruth died of cancer aged 33, less than a year after being diagnosed.

Food for thought: Breakfast of champions

If you fancy some early-morning sustenance, you've usually got three options if you want to eat out - a croissant in a cafe, an artery- clogging fry-up in a greasy spoon or some posh nosh in a London hotel. But now an increasing number of restaurants are opening for breakfast during the week (several have done weekend brunches and the like for some time), serving up everything from pizza to kidneys to grilled salmon and seaweed.

Profit from passion

Two studies show that people work better if they believe in what they are doing and are emotionally engaged with the company they work for. Roger Trapp reports

With a canteen like this, who needs Conran?

If the words "staff canteen" summon up images of chips with everything, lumpy custard and Formica tables, think again, says Helen Jones. Eating at work is changing and, for some employees, focaccia has replaced Mother's Pride

Outakes: Damien Whitmore on a new direction for advertising at the Tate Gallery

`We are opening a new Tate Gallery of Modern Art at Bankside, and relaunching the Tate Gallery of British Art at Millbank, so we need to double our audience by the year 2000. Advertising plays a key role in attracting new audiences. But we felt that our usual advertising - just an image and a name, which is what most art galleries use - wasn't enough to attract them.

From famine to feast

Roger Trapp meets a man whose fine foods business has moved a long way from where it started, in the back of his car

How the DJ turned the tables

Capital Radio is kicking itself for letting Chris Evans get to Virgin first. But, Hilary Clarke wonders, is theirs the next station on his list?

Cafe Society: South Ken's Chinese puzzle

Hungry for culture but hungrier for food? Now the People's museums are waging war on the taxpayer, a full meal at Paper Tiger costs less than seeing the Great Bed of Ware at the V&A, as Serena Mackesy found out

Christmas Food & Drink: The new mail order

A live lobster, an alligator steak and a suckling pig are just some of the first-class foods you can buy mail order. Rachelle Thackray on how to get your Christmas dinner by post

City: I work for Julian Metcalfe

Beaky Evette works for the chairman of the Pret A Manger sandwich company

Radio: Tolstoy in 10 easy episodes

'War and Peace' on the wireless? Even stranger, it was recorded in a Soho almshouse. Sue Gaisford listened in report David Malouf would hate to bepigeon holed as another Sue Gaisford identity' novelist.He'd

Who called the taste police?

All is minimal, all is tasteful, all is bleached beech and pan- fried kangaroo. Whatever happened to individual style? asks Eleanor Bailey

How the personal touch replaces `automated hell'

There could no better sign of the transformation quietly gripping Shell's bureaucracy than the sight of Phil Turberville, head of the European refining and marketing division, donning a set of overalls and filling a customer's petrol tank.
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On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

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In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific
In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

Dame Colette Bowe - interview
When do the creative juices dry up?

When do the creative juices dry up?

David Lodge thinks he knows
The 'Cher moment' happening across fashion just now

Fashion's Cher moment

Ageing beauty will always be more classy than all that booty
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

Health fears over school cancer jab

Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

Weather warning

Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report
LSD: Speaking to volunteer users of the drug as trials get underway to see if it cures depression and addiction

High hopes for LSD

Meet the volunteer users helping to see if it cures depression and addiction
German soldier who died fighting for UK in Battle of Waterloo should be removed from museum display and given dignified funeral, say historians

Saving Private Brandt

A Belgian museum's display of the skeleton of a soldier killed at Waterloo prompts calls for him to be given a dignified funeral