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.

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Jeremy Clarkson has rejected criticisms of his language, according to BBC director of television Danny Cohen
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A polar bear’s diet is rich in seal blubber and half of its own body weight is composed of fat
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fashion David Beckham fronts adverts for his underwear collection
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Flocking round: Beyoncé, Madame Tussauds' latest waxwork, looking fierce in the park
travelIn a digital age when we have more access than ever to the stars, why are waxworks still pulling in crowds?
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Arts and Entertainment
Judi Dench appeared at the Hay Festival to perform excerpts from Shakespearean plays
tvJudi Dench and Hugh Bonneville join Benedict Cumberbatch in BBC Shakespeare adaptations
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Ronahi Serhat, a PKK fighter, in the Qandil Mountains in Iraqi Kurdistan
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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
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Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

The President came the nearest he has come yet to rivalling George W Bush’s gormless reaction to 9/11 , says Robert Fisk
Ebola outbreak: Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on the virus

Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on Ebola

A Christian charity’s efforts to save missionaries trapped in Africa by the crisis have been justifiably praised. But doubts remain about its evangelical motives
Jeremy Clarkson 'does not see a problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC

Not even Jeremy Clarkson is bigger than the BBC, says TV boss

Corporation’s head of television confirms ‘Top Gear’ host was warned about racist language
Nick Clegg the movie: Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise

Nick Clegg the movie

Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise
Philip Larkin: Misogynist, racist, miserable? Or caring, playful man who lived for others?

Philip Larkin: What will survive of him?

Larkin's reputation has taken a knocking. But a new book by James Booth argues that the poet was affectionate, witty, entertaining and kind, as hitherto unseen letters, sketches and 'selfies' reveal
Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?

Waxing lyrical

Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?
Texas forensic astronomer finally pinpoints the exact birth of impressionism

Revealed (to the minute)

The precise time when impressionism was born
From slow-roasted to sugar-cured: how to make the most of the British tomato season

Make the most of British tomatoes

The British crop is at its tastiest and most abundant. Sudi Pigott shares her favourite recipes
10 best men's skincare products

Face it: 10 best men's skincare products

Oscar Quine cleanses, tones and moisturises to find skin-savers blokes will be proud to display on the bathroom shelf
Malky Mackay allegations: Malky Mackay, Iain Moody and another grim day for English football

Mackay, Moody and another grim day for English football

The latest shocking claims do nothing to dispel the image that some in the game on these shores exist in a time warp, laments Sam Wallace
La Liga analysis: Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Pete Jenson starts his preview of the Spanish season, which begins on Saturday, by explaining how Fifa’s transfer ban will affect the Catalans
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape