Vince Cable has decided against a ban on zero- hour contracts as some workers need flexibility

Government plans ban on exclusive 'zero hours' contracts – but stops short of outlawing completely

Move follows growing criticism of the controversial contracts, which do not ensure a minimum number of hours

Lord Mackenzie and Lord Laird will not be able to sit in the House of Lords for months

Two peers suspended from the House of Lords after offering to do paid work for undercover reporters

Lord Mackenzie and Lord Laird both face temporary bans after being caught by Sunday Times journalists

Following a review into seven day care, hospitals that do not provide the same standard of care at the weekend as during the week will be fined

Have senior doctors work at weekends or face huge fines, hospitals told

The days of hospitals relying on junior doctors at the weekend are numbered, the director of NHS England has said

Visual aid: some artists have said that their work can reduce stress and help patients to heal

Cash-poor NHS spends millions on art - despite cuts that led to thousands of job losses

As one trust boasts of being the biggest art gallery in town, campaigners object to art purchases worth up to £5m

Belfast bomb in Cathedral Quarter 'could have killed or injured anyone near'

Bomb exploded in a busy area of Belfast City

General Motors to halt production in Australia

GM subsidiary Holden is set to stop production in Australia by the end of 2017

Helle Thorning-Schmidt: Who is David Cameron and Obama's 'selfie' pal?

The Danish PM became an overnight internet sensation after her ‘selfie’ at Mandela’s memorial went viral

A brief history of student protest: From 'no women at Cambridge' in 1897 to 'cops off campus' in 2013

Student activists today are standing on the shoulders of giants

A demonstration organized by Anonymous group was held to protest against the austerity measures adopted by the governement - some people in the crowd also feel at odds with political parties

$183,000 fine for man who joined Anonymous attack for 'one minute'

The attack succeeded in taking a website operated by the controversial Koch Industries company offline for just 15 minutes

Royal Mail agrees 9% pay rise with unions

Royal Mail workers will receive a three-year pay rise worth around 9% and legally-binding employment protections under a "landmark" agreement.

New NHS figures have revealed a surge in numbers of middle-aged patients admitted to A&E because of drug or alcohol

Middle-aged drinking and drug-taking leads to surge in hospital admissions

New NHS figures have revealed a surge in numbers of middle-aged patients admitted to A&E because of drug or alcohol.

Karen Whitefield, a former Labour MSP, has been selected as the party’s 2015 general election candidate in Falkirk, the constituency at the centre of multiple controversies

Labour selects Karen Whitefield as Falkirk candidate

Karen Whitefield, a former Labour MSP, has been selected as the party’s 2015 general election candidate in Falkirk, the constituency at the centre of multiple controversies.

Hewlett-Packard plans to axe 1,124 jobs in UK

Computer giant Hewlett-Packard is set to cut more than 1,000 jobs in the UK as part of a global downsizing, the company announced today.

Royal Mail and union leaders reach deal averting Christmas strike

A proposed deal has been agreed between the Royal Mail and union leaders averting the risk of a Christmas strike.

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: It seems the class of 2013 could do better

Michael Gove is addicted to taunting post-New Labour about Tony Blair

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

As the collections start, fashion editor Alexander Fury finds video and the internet are proving more attractive
Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy

Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall...

... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy
Weekend at the Asylum: Europe's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln

Europe's biggest steampunk convention

Jake Wallis Simons discovers how Victorian ray guns and the martial art of biscuit dunking are precisely what the 21st century needs
Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Lying is dangerous and unnecessary. A new book explains the strategies needed to avoid it. John Rentoul on the art of 'uncommunication'
Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough? Was the beloved thespian the last of the cross-generation stars?

Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough?

The atomisation of culture means that few of those we regard as stars are universally loved any more, says DJ Taylor