News Council tax set to rise by as much as five per cent

The amount paid by households towards the cost of policing looks set to rise by up to five per cent this year as the Government faces a potential show down with its flagship Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) who are demanding above inflation increases in council tax to combat swingeing budget cuts.

Mark Bridger says he he accidentally killed April Jones

April Jones trial: Evidence against Mark Bridger is 'overwhelming', court hears

Prosecutor says case 'stands strongly and compellingly' in closing speech

Bluebells are usually one of the first indications that spring is on the way

Kate Humble: Signs of spring are everywhere, even in the chill

Spring has been a long time coming this year, a feeling exacerbated, I suspect, by the fact that we have barely seen the sun since last March. Remember last year? Spring made a tentative start in January and by the end of March the bluebells were out, most of us had had at least one barbecue and we were looking forward to a long hot summer. Then April came, and with it, the rain, which didn't stop.

48 rescued as tourist boat runs aground of Welsh coast

Forty eight people have been rescued from a passenger boat after it hit a rock on a Welsh island this afternoon, coastguards said.

MMR vaccination up-take remains too low among the worst-hit 10 to 18 age group

50,000 MMR vaccinations so far in battle to halt Welsh measles epidemic

But up-take remains too low among the worst-hit 10 to 18 age group

Christian Jolley of Newport County celebrates scoring a goal during the Blue Square Bet Premier Conference Play-off Final

Blue Square Premier: Newport back after 25 years

Newport County will return to the Football League after a 25-year absence after two dramatic late goals gave them victory over Welsh rivals Wrexham at Wembley.

Scott Sinclair

After a £6.2m move and just three starts, Scott Sinclair could leave Manchester City

Manager Roberto Mancini drops hint that the former Swansea player's future could lie away from the Etihad

Five-year-old April was last seen playing out on her bike close to her home in Machynlleth, mid Wales, on the evening of October 1

Police call off the search for missing April Jones

The search - one of the largest in UK history - was due to end this month

Measles could hit two million children

As many as two million schoolchildren are susceptible to measles due to their lack of the MMR vaccine scare, a leading health expert has warned.

Liberty Stadium

Swansea seek to raise capacity at Liberty Stadium

Swansea City have announced plans to increase the capacity of their Liberty Stadium by more than 12,000 seats in another reflection of the boom in Welsh football.

Margaret Thatcher funeral: Welsh miners pay respect despite anger towards the former Tory prime minister

Traditional Welsh respect for the dead has ensured that few have an appetite for public protest

An MMR jab is administered

Thousands of Swansea children still to have MMR jab as fears over scale of epidemic worsen

Health Secretary urges parents whose children aren't vaccinated to take action

Woman in hospital after home attack by American bulldog

A dog which savaged a woman has now been destroyed, police have confirmed.

Swansea measles outbreak: Confirmed cases rise to nearly 700

A big increase in measles cases has prompted health bosses to renew a plea for unvaccinated people to get their MMR jabs immediately.

Established campaigner Alison Young put in a steely performance in the Laser Radial event

Seven Palma World Cup golds for British sailors

Palma World Cup golds for Alison Young and Giles Scott topped the seven-medal haul for Britain’s sailors at the conclusion of the Princess Sofia Trophy in Mallorca yesterday.

Jacqueline Thompson: blogger who waged 'campaign of harassment' against council chief ordered to pay £25,000 damages

A blogger who waged an “unlawful campaign of harassment, defamation and intimidation” against a council chief executive has been ordered to pay him £25,000 libel damages.

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Robin van Persie hands his third-place medal to a supporter
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Ian Thorpe had Rio 2016 in his sights
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Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
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The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?