Israel's president Shimon Peres prepares to lay a wreath on the coffin of former prime minister Ariel Sharon

Ariel Sharon’s body lies in state outside Knesset as Israelis come to pay their respects

There will be a state memorial service for the former prime minister tomorrow before he is buried in a private ceremony at his ranch

Alex Ferguson and Ed Miliband at Manchester United's training ground in 2010

Labour's next big signing? Ed Miliband urged to recruit Sir Alex Ferguson for general election

Labour MP claims former Manchester United manager would provide morale boost

What’s wrong with the Tories? Why aren’t they being more optimistic?

Voters will turn away if they keep hearing sneers and grumbles from Cameron and co

Ed Miliband has been warned the party cannot expect to win on the basis that cuts will continue to make the Coalition unpopular

Blair ally Patrick Diamond tells Ed Miliband: cost of living will not win Labour the 2015 election

There is a common belief Labour can somehow coast to victory

The National Portrait Gallery has commissioned a portrait of Tony Blair by Alastair Adams

National Gallery unveils 'uncompromising' portrait of Tony Blair by Alastair Adams

Oil painting is a dramatic close-up of the former Labour leader

The Queen was upset by police officers eating nuts left around Buckingham Palace, the trial into alleged phone hacking at the News of the World has heard

Hacking trial: Police officers 'irritated' Queen by eating nuts left out at Buckingham Palace, court told

The hacking trial at the Old Bailey has heard how the Queen was “narked” that police were, she believed, eating snacks left out for her by Buckingham Palace staff.

Page 3 Profile: Tessa Jowell, politician

She’s a rather experienced politician.

Former Labour minister Denis MacShane

Former Labour minister Denis MacShane pleads guilty to fraud over £13,000 Parliamentary expenses

Court hears how money was used to fund trips to Europe under banner of 'research and translation' work

John Major's comments on privilege are all very well – but was he asleep for Blair's decade in office?

“Education, education, education” wasn’t just the crappest tricolon ever

John Major slams private school privilege: What did he do to change the system while he was PM?

All Major did was allow a few high-performing schools serving the middle classes to opt out into grant-maintained status

Officers of the new National Crime Agency participating in a training exercise

Volunteers top most wanted list for 'Britain's FBI' as National Crime Agency is launched

Britain's elite new police force launches today with appeal for private sector to fill its skills gap

1 April 1997: Tony and Cherie Blair on the steps of his campaign bus in Northampton, the month before he is elected Prime Minister. Shortly after, the Labour leader sprung on to a raised platform to wow the assembled crowd.

Ed Miliband is no more 'red' than the Tony Blair that won the 1997 general election

The Labour leader’s temporary freeze on energy bills is a fair and moderate step

Ed Miliband promised a price freeze on heating bills at the conference

Birth of a leader: Ed Miliband boldly fleshes out policy vision in Labour Party conference speech

The risk is that Tories and their newspapers will portray what he is doing as a return to the 1970s

Ed Miliband addresses a crowd in Brighton

Labour Party conference: Ed Miliband pledges to increase minimum wage as Rachel Reeves says people on £60,000 'aren’t rich'

Shadow Treasury ministers says only 'privileged few' on salaries of more than £150,000 would be expected to contribute more

News
A 1930 image of the Karl Albrecht Spiritousen and Lebensmittel shop, Essen. The shop was opened by Karl and Theo Albrecht’s mother; the brothers later founded Aldi
people
Arts and Entertainment
Standing the test of time: Michael J Fox and Christopher Lloyd in 'Back to the Future'
filmA cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Arts and Entertainment
Flora Spencer-Longhurst as Lavinia, William Houston as Titus Andronicus and Dyfan Dwyfor as Lucius
theatreThe Shakespeare play that proved too much for more than 100 people
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exclusivePunk icon Viv Albertine on Sid Vicious, complacent white men, and why free love led to rape
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Stir crazy: Noel Fielding in 'Luxury Comedy 2: Tales from Painted Hawaii'
comedyAs ‘Luxury Comedy’ returns, Noel Fielding on why mainstream success scares him and what the future holds for 'The Boosh'
Life and Style
Flow chart: Karl Landsteiner discovered blood types in 1900, yet scientists have still not come up with an explanation for their existence
lifeAll of us have one. Yet even now, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Arts and Entertainment
'Weird Al' Yankovic, or Alfred Matthew, at the 2014 Los Angeles Film Festival Screening of
musicHis latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do our experts think he’s missed out?
Sport
New Real Madrid signing James Rodríguez with club president Florentino Perez
sportColombian World Cup star completes £63m move to Spain
Travel
Hotel Tour d’Auvergne in Paris launches pay-what-you-want
travelIt seems fraught with financial risk, but the policy has its benefits
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booksThe best children's books for this summer
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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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Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy'

A land of the outright bizarre
What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

‘Weird Al’ Yankovic's latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do The Independent’s experts think he’s missed out?
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?

The worst kept secret in cinema

A cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Facebook: The new hatched, matched and dispatched

The new hatched, matched and dispatched

Family events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped the ‘Births, Deaths and Marriages’ announcements
Why do we have blood types?

Are you my type?

All of us have one but probably never wondered why. Yet even now, a century after blood types were discovered, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Honesty box hotels: You decide how much you pay

Honesty box hotels

Five hotels in Paris now allow guests to pay only what they think their stay was worth. It seems fraught with financial risk, but the honesty policy has its benefit
Commonwealth Games 2014: Why weight of pressure rests easy on Michael Jamieson’s shoulders

Michael Jamieson: Why weight of pressure rests easy on his shoulders

The Scottish swimmer is ready for ‘the biggest race of my life’ at the Commonwealth Games
Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn