Voices Little security: rents are the biggest factor in the cost of living crisis

If we don't like rich landlords then we can raise taxes on the rich generally, but it will be a brave politician who suggests it

Chief Executive of the RBS Stephen Hester warned it could take up to a decade for the taxpayer to recoup its £45 billion stake in the bank

Outgoing RBS boss Stephen Hester: taxpayer won't recoup bail-out money for another decade

Hester says he's 'comfortable' with his departure, announced for later this year

Parliamentary Standards Commission makes call to get tough with the bankers

Group demands fines and bans for those who behave negligently

Ben Chu: Water, water everywhere – but where is there any benefit for customers?

Outlook The City's mouth is watering. A takeover bid for Severn Trent from a consortium of pension funds and a sovereign wealth pot is stimulating juices in the Square Mile. Large fees for investment banks and, naturally, profits for speculators are in prospect if the £5bn-odd approach to buy the water company, which unveiled its full-year results yesterday, is successful. The other two other listed water utilities could also soon be in play too, slather the bulls.

Goldmans and UBS are set to steer the listing of Royal Mail

Goldman Sachs and UBS have been chosen to oversee the planned flotation of the Royal Mail later this year.

Simon English: Politics will decide Royal Mail float price

Outlook Royal Mail plumped itself up for joining the stock market yesterday with some flashy looking operating profits.

James Ashton: Let's see Parker pack his bags and go postal

Tim Parker tried to convince me he was staying put when he breezed into my office this week, but I still suspect it won’t be long before the private equity world’s favourite boss has found something new to occupy his mind.

Chancellor George Osborne and Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander, outside the Treasury

The great Civil Service sell-off: Dozens of services and 75,000 staff set to be transferred to private sector

Unions denounce sale as ‘privatisation by stealth’

A crowd of supporters gathers outside Brighton Magistrates' Court

Occupy Sussex students plead not guilty

Four students pleaded not guilty today at Brighton Magistrates Court to charges related to protests that took place at the University of Sussex up to three weeks ago.

Network Rail's debt ratchets up running costs

The burden of Network Rail's £28bn debt pile means that 13 per cent of the cost of running the railways is taken up in loan repayments, according to the industry regulator.

Sir Jeremy Heywood, head of Britain’s civil service

MPs attack top civil servants over Thatcher tribute

Head mandarins praised Lady Thatcher as the 'best kind of boss'

The cafe occupied on Tuesday

Occupy Sussex defies injunction to continue cuts protest

Students and staff banned from protesting at the University of Sussex defied the injunction and occupied a campus café yesterday.

Nick Clegg, David Cameron and Ed Miliband all attended the emergency recall of Parliament

Furious Tories jeer as Labour MPs condemn impact of Margaret Thatcher's policies in Parliamentary 'tributes' session

A show of unity by the three main political parties over Margaret Thatcher since her death on Monday ended when Labour MPs launched strong attacks on her record during Commons tributes to her yesterday.

A friend of the City: Margaret Thatcher's impact on London's financial centre praised

City traders, economists and commentators praised Margaret Thatcher today for reforming London’s financial centre and turning it into an engine of the economy and the envy of the world.

So where were you when you heard Lady Thatcher had died? Lady who?

“Her shadow is very long,” someone said on the Huw Edwards special which took over the afternoon schedules – and if you’d been watching the rolling news coverage since the announcement of Baroness Thatcher’s death, you would have felt every inch of it.

The Highways Agency’s South-east base in Godstone, Surrey

George Osborne takes first step on road to privatising Britain's highways

The Government risks angering trades unions with plans to commercialise the running and repair of Britain's core roads network, a move likely to lead to full privatisation.

News
Ben Little, right, is a Labour supporter while Jonathan Rogers supports the Green Party
general election 2015
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The 91st Hakone Ekiden Qualifier at Showa Kinen Park, Tokyo, 2014
news
Life and Style
Former helicopter pilot Major Tim Peake will become the first UK astronaut in space for over 20 years
food + drinkNothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
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Kim Wilde began gardening in the 1990s when she moved to the countryside
peopleThe singer is leading an appeal for the charity Thrive, which uses the therapy of horticulture
Sport
Alexis Sanchez celebrates scoring a second for Arsenal against Reading
football
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health
Voices
An easy-peel potato; Dave Hax has come up with an ingenious method in food preparation
voicesDave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
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Japan's population is projected to fall dramatically in the next 50 years (Wikimedia)
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Life and Style
Buyers of secondhand cars are searching out shades last seen in cop show ‘The Sweeney’
motoringFlares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
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Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 17 April 2015
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own