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Revelling in the latest growth figures, George Osborne lifted Balls-baiting to a new plane. He was asked an unusually long list of super-friendly questions by euphoric Tory backbenchers. Ones that in the secret dreams of the MPs involved, invite the answer: “Yes. My honourable friend has absolutely hit the nail on the head with that spiffing question correctly mentioning our long-term economic plan, allowing me to lay into the Opposition, and qualifying him for early promotion.”

Under the proposals, patients will only be transferred to other wards if it is absolutely necessary

Welcome to the hospital of the future: New management structures, revolutionary medical training and a 'buck-stops-here' culture

A landmark report by the Royal College of Physicians in response to the NHS crisis has outlined 50 measures to modernise the service to cope with the demands of an ageing population, but critics question if there is the political will or money to make it a reality

Just 5 per cent of officers are from an ethnic-minority background

Retired general to lead inquiry into police chiefs

The Association of Chief Police Officers faces an independent reveiw

Tributes to cyclist after road death

Garry Hobson, 68, died on arrival at hospital after being struck by a car

NHS hospitals to be offered 'gold standard' mark on care for elderly patients following Mid Staffs scandal

Hospital wards are to be awarded “gold standard” stamps of approval by the Royal College of Physicians if they can prove they are meeting high standards in caring for the elderly.

Stoke football match ends with fan violence and 23 arrests

Local derby between Port Vale and Wolves sees home fans throwing missiles at police officers and smashing up a marked squad car

The scandal-hit Stafford Hospital

Scandal-hit Stafford health trust to be prosecuted over death of diabetic patient who was not given insulin

Mid Staffordshire NHS Trust was subject to major inquiry that reported catastrophic care failings between 2005 and 2009

Publican blames 'weak ankles' as he breaks foot in charity bungee jump

A pub landlord who broke his foot in three places during a 200ft charity bungee jump thinks his injuries could be down to "weak ankles".

Green MP Caroline Lucas is arrested near Balcombe during the anti-fracking protests

Green MP Caroline Lucas arrested as anti-fracking protests reach fever pitch

First day of ‘mass civil disobedience’ sees shows of dissent at Balcombe and related sites

Kelly Jones of Stereophonics

Stereophonics' Kelly Jones reveals film plans

Stereophonics frontman Kelly Jones has revealed more plans for a film he has written.

Review, chaired by President Obama’s former advisor on health Professor Don Berwick, contained glowing praise for 'the vast majority' of NHS staff

Berwick report: Danger of understaffed NHS wards can no longer be ignored after Mid Staffs scandal, Jeremy Hunt warned

Review says NHS staff responsible for 'recklessness or wilful neglect' of patient safety should face jail

Jeremy Hunt has been criticised for presiding over staff cuts

Jeremy Hunt urged to set NHS safe staffing levels after Mid Staffs scandal

New report on patient safety likely to increase pressure on Health Secretary over cuts

The Mid Staffordshire NHS Trust went into administration in April

Mid Staffordshire NHS Trust 'should be dissolved'

Administrators said that the trust’s Stafford Hospital and Cannock Hospital would remain open

Stolen personal details of 400,000 witnesses and defendants at Salford Magistrates Court found for sale on eBay

The £1,200 server was returned but police found insufficient evidence to find the thief

MoD awards £45m battlefield radios contract

A new multimillion-pound contract for the maintenance of British troops' battlefield radios will secure hundreds of defence jobs across the country, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has announced.

Mid-Staffs nursing chief: I’m not to blame

Janice Harry tells hearing that the word 'nursing' in her job title was 'misleading'

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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