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All-cash deal is the second largest in Google's history after the $12.5 billion acquisition of mobile phone maker Motorola in 2012

Inside Business: Windows, rags and riches

A family concern with global interests, OCS has thrived throughout the century, says Roger Trapp

Pound rises as rates held

THE BANK of England's decision to leave interest rates unchanged at 5.5 per cent yesterday left industry disappointed as the pound climbed to a new high against the euro.

Governor seeks friends in the North

"WHERE'S THE apology, Eddie?" The question from the unemployed of Newcastle upon Tyne to the governor of the Bank of England was simple enough. But Eddie George, on his first trip to the North-east in five years, had no intention of delivering any apology.

Letter: Millennium strike

Sir: Whilst computer confusion or total collapse at the time of the rollover to the next century may be fascinating to some and frightening to others, there is a more serious consequence of this event beginning to emerge.

Letter: Blinkered economy

Sir: It is now well recognised that in many service industry areas there is overcapacity ("How is it that all these gloomy businessmen are employing more people?", 4 February).

Debate: Is it right that some public spaces be kept free of children?

The At-Bristol science museum, which opens next year, is to make one of its galleries adult-only in response to concerns about noise. But is it reasonable to expect to avoid children in public places? Yes, says Root Cartwright; why should their rights come first? But families still have a raw deal, says Rosalind Freeborn; we have to learn tolerance

City expects quarter point rate cut today

A SERIES of gloomy business surveys published yesterday fuelled speculation that the Bank of England would today deliver its fifth successive cut in interest rates, writes Lea Paterson.

How is it that all these gloomy businessmen are employing more people?

START WITH an immediate question and a bigger puzzle. The immediate question is how fast UK interest rates will come down; the bigger puzzle is what is actually happening to the British economy.

Lilleshall plunges on bank covenant breach

SHARES IN Lilleshall, the Berkshire-based provider of industrial services, plunged from 68p to 47.5p yesterday after the company announced it was in breach of its banking covenants with Lloyds Bank.

Service sector growth stalled

THERE WAS fresh evidence of a slowdown in the services sector yesterday, fuelling speculation that today's crucial growth figures will show that the economy stagnated towards the end of last year.

American Times Denny's Diner: You're welcome: US restaurants offer hand of racial friendship Ethnic minorities start winning the racism war in restaurants

A FACE appears on the television screen. It is brown, wide-eyed, and framed - quite discreetly - with dreadlocks. "I want to let you into a little secret," says the voiceover. "I'm black."

MPC expected to hold back from rate change

LEADING CITY economists expect the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee to leave interest rates unchanged when it meets later this week, although most anticipate that the introduction of the euro will help push rates down sharply later.

Jobwatch

THE LATEST government figures show unemployment has risen for the second consecutive month, although employment levels continue to increase.

Service sector has its bright spots

News Analysis: There is no evidence yet of the across-the-board decline that has hit manufacturing

Who eats where: Your usual table?; Daniel Galvin Haircolourist

On the rare occasions that my family is together for a meal, we head for Sunday lunch at the Sir Charles Napier (near Chinnor, Oxfordshire, 01494 483 011) The owner, Julie Griffiths, goes out of her way to make sure you're comfortable. Being in the service industry myself, that kind of courtesy means a lot. There are too many places where the people serving you give the impression that they're doing you a favour. The quality of customer relations at the Sir Charles Napier is one of the reasons why it is always busy.
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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 17 April 2015
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions