BBC chiefs claimed for champagne and jewels on expenses

Corporation releases documents revealing luxury gifts handed out by bosses

Omagh probe prevented from seeing secret papers

An investigation into the Omagh bombing has been left “clouded in secrecy” after the Prime Minister repeatedly blocked access to secret documents, MPs claimed today.

Families unite for unveiling of bombing memorial

Relatives of the 52 victims of the 7 July bombings marked the fourth anniversary of the attacks today with the unveiling of a memorial commemorating their loved ones.

Tessa Jowell: Greater openness must be central to the clean-up of our politics

I remain optimistic about the future of progressive politics in this country but we must react with energy and ideas. A fearful retreat into inertia would condemn Labour to being seen as a conservative party, the defenders of the status quo. Our goals must always be higher than that: whether that status quo is an indefensible, secretive system of parliamentary allowances, or public services which fail to keep pace with people's rising aspirations.

Inside Lines: How 'Nasty Nick' boxed clever to land his political punches

Surprise, surprise. Nick Griffin, the BNP leader, is actually a leftie – and a fan of Amir Khan. So he told us last week when we discussed his own boxing career, which included winning a Blue for Cambridge (light, not dark, of course).

PM looks ahead with electoral reform plan

Gordon Brown will today promise an elected House of Lords and open the door to electoral reform as part of a sweeping package to "clean up politics" after the MPs' expenses scandal.

Brown in danger after share of vote collapses

Gordon Brown in danger after Labour's share of vote collapses to historic low of 16 per cent in disastrous European elections

Brown vows not to 'walk away'

Gordon Brown today sought to face down his critics, vowing that he would not "walk away" in the face of political and economic difficulties.

Amol Rajan: The PM has a problem with female voters – and politicians

Twelve years, one month and two days after the infamous photocall of Blair's Babes, Gordon's Girls are deserting him. Now, there is talk instead of the WAGs (Women Against Gordon).

Berlusconi urged to quit

Silvio Berlusconi yesterday faced calls to resign from opposition leaders after a judge ruled that David Mills, husband of the Olympics minister Tessa Jowell, lied at two corruption trials to protect the Italian Prime Minister.

Daughter of Blair guru loses her bid for safe seat

Impeccable New Labour credentials count for nothing to party rank and file after bitter and brutal campaign in south-east London

The curious case of the author who would not die

The characters are cardboard, the plots rely on chance and the settings are implausible. But no one can resist an Agatha Christie, says Barry Forshaw

David Mills: The brilliant, well-connected lawyer who was too impulsive for his own good

Brilliant and extroverted, master of four languages and the clarinet, the man sentenced to four and a half years in jail by a court in Milan yesterday is one of the best-connected lawyers in Britain, with a network of influential friends and relations, most of them on or around the summit of New Labour.

Jowell fights for gender equality at 2012 Games

Tessa Jowell, the minister for the Olympics, wants to change rules that bar women from competing in as many events as men by the 2012 Games.

Leading article: Gender games

There will doubtless be those who argue that, rather than pushing for greater sexual equality in Olympic scheduling, Tessa Jowell ought first to concentrate on getting the various venues to stage the London 2012 Games built on time and on budget. Not us, though.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 30 January 2015
Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee