News Mr Starmer stood down last month and has gone back to private practice

Former Director of Public Prosecutions  already advising party on a victim’s law’ for manifesto

The Real Thing, Old Vic, London<br/>Counted?, County Hall, London<br/>Pressure Drop, Wellcome Collection, London

A Stoppard revival and a docu-drama about young voters' disenchantment bump up against the latest in a wave of works to tackle the rise of the BNP

Counted?, County Hall, London

To vote or not to vote, that is the question. Most ordinary folk would rather tick a few numbers on the Lottery than tick a box in a polling booth on 6 May, and this new documentary drama from the Look Left Look Right company examines the causes of political apathy in West Yorkshire: people didn't know about local elections; they feel alienated; the most popular video on YouTube is the one of Gordon Brown picking his nose and eating it.

Steve Connor: History suggests eruption may last a very long time

The last time the Eyjafjallajoekull volcano on the southern flank of Iceland erupted was in 1821 and that event took almost two years to subside. Volcanologists are unsure whether the current eruption is going to be a similar, long-lived affair with months or even years of air-traffic disruption.

At least 10 die and 500 injured in Thai riots

Troops and protesters traded petrol bombs and rubber bullets during running skirmishes in Bangkok

Meredith Kercher killer's apology won sentence cut

An appeals court today said it shaved 14 years off the sentence of a man involved in the murder of a British student Meredith Kercher because he was the only one of the three defendants to apologise to her family.

Study links excessive internet use to depression

People who spend a lot of time surfing the internet are more likely to show signs of depression, British scientists said today.

Japanese student charged with Lindsay's Hawker's murder

A Japanese English student was charged today with the rape and murder of British teacher Lindsay Hawker.

Kercher killer has sentence cut in half after appeal

An Italian court of appeal yesterday reduced the prison sentence for the first person convicted of the murder of Meredith Kercher from 30 years to 16.

Knox killer theory is absurd says former lover

The thought of Amanda Knox killing someone in a moment of anger is "absurd and unrealistic", her former lover Raffaele Sollecito has said.

'I'm glad I was a teenage mother'

When Camilla Chafer became pregnant while studying for A-levels, it could have spelt the end of all her ambitions. But 11 years on, she believes it was the making of her

A life cut short: Death of a daughter, sister, friend

While the media focused on the accused killers, the story of a murdered young woman often took second place.

Knox awaits her fate after final plea

American student charged with murder tells court her conscience is clear

I'm not a killer, says Knox

Amanda Knox told a court today she did not want to be branded an assassin.

GM crops have a role in preventing world hunger, chief scientist says

The Government should approve trials to develop crops resistant to climate change that would feed a growing population
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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
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey: ‘lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird’

'Lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird'

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey calls for immediate action to address the problem
Josephine Dickinson: 'A cochlear implant helped me to discover a new world of sound'

Josephine Dickinson: 'How I discovered a new world of sound'

After going deaf as a child, musician and poet Josephine Dickinson made do with a hearing aid for five decades. Then she had a cochlear implant - and everything changed
Greggs Google fail: Was the bakery's response to its logo mishap a stroke of marketing genius?

Greggs gives lesson in crisis management

After a mishap with their logo, high street staple Greggs went viral this week. But, as Simon Usborne discovers, their social media response was anything but half baked
Matthew McConaughey has been singing the praises of bumbags (shame he doesn't know how to wear one)

Matthew McConaughey sings the praises of bumbags

Shame he doesn't know how to wear one. Harriet Walker explains the dos and don'ts of fanny packs
7 best quadcopters and drones

Flying fun: 7 best quadcopters and drones

From state of the art devices with stabilised cameras to mini gadgets that can soar around the home, we take some flying objects for a spin
Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

The midfielder returned to the Premier League after two years last weekend. The controversial character had much to discuss after his first game back
Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

British No 1 knows his consistency as well as his fitness needs working on as he prepares for the US Open after a ‘very, very up and down’ year
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law
Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world. But could his predictions of war do the same?

Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world...

But could his predictions of war do the same?