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The UK’s benefits and state pension are too low, the Council of Europe said yesterday – a claim that Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith dismissed as “lunacy”.

Kier wins contract to build new Broadmoor

The construction company Kier is to build a new £115m high-security home for notorious murderers including the Yorkshire Ripper, Peter Sutcliffe.

Iain Duncan Smith is facing criticism that Universal Credit leaves some families worse off

Working families will be ‘worse off’ under Universal Credit scheme

Some working families will be worse off under Iain Duncan Smith's flagship Universal Credit - even though it was intended to encourage people back into work, according to research published today.

Hundreds of thousands of carers will be promised new rights in the Queen’s Speech as the number of elderly and vulnerable people being looked after by family members continues to soar

The Government has no idea how cuts are impacting on disabled people - and no intention of measuring

Today Labour's Liam Byrne is demanding that the Government carry out a cumulative impact assessment to find out how welfare reforms are really affecting families

Premiership backs proposal for globally integrated rugby season

IRPA proposals given approval

Emergency hotline should be set up for depressed footballers at risk of suicide, says PFA chairman Clarke Carlisle

PFA and FA to hold urgent talks with Premier League and Football League to improve support for players suffering mental illness

Former BBC reporter Russell Joslin

BBC reporter threw himself under bus after 'cover-up' over harassment allegations he made against colleague

Family said BBC managers did too little to help when he contacted them to address the concerns

Stuart Broad says he is '100 per cent fit' for the Ashes

The Ashes: Stuart Broad backs fitness - but record raises fears

Fast bowler confident of playing at Trent Bridge next week following shoulder injection

Lord Freud: 'Food from a food bank is by definition a free good and there's almost infinite demand'

Food banks row: Bishop of Truro hits back at Lord Freud

'A lot of evidence some people have to use them because of benefits system glitches'

England in comfort zone in Essex Ashes warm-up mismatch

England's Ashes warm-up match lost its first-class status halfway through the third afternoon at Chelmsford to allow Boyd Rankin and Reece Topley to bolster Essex's injury-depleted attack.

James Horwill’s foot was said only to have glanced Alun Wyn Jones

Lions Tour 2013: Stamp ban storm hits Wallabies' Test hopes

IRB appeals James Horwill 'let-off' and replaces Kiwi hearing judge with British-Canadian

The Chancellor has suggested that after the next election, the Tories would make further welfare cuts rather than raising taxes

Spending Review: Chancellor George Osborne hints Tories would make further welfare cuts rather than increase taxes after next election

While respected fiscal think tank criticises George Osborne's decision to continue the freeze on council tax

The limits of the cuts are being reached

Rules of state spending are being reconsidered

The limits of the cuts are being reached – and now nowhere is safe from the axe

Open office: More room, less privacy

Open-plan offices affect employees' ability to concentrate, new study finds

Workers who spend a lot of time on tasks requiring focus find them difficult to complete when too close to colleagues

Chancellor George Osborne's Spending Review in the House of Commons this afternoon

Most public spending reviews create winners and losers. But there are no winners today

When George Osborne spoke today he evidently felt he was responding to the public mood. How long will that mood last?

Court artist sketch of Moors Murderer Ian Brady appearing via video at his mental health tribunal

Ian Brady still psychotic, says doctor

The child killer suffers from long-term paranoid schizophrenia which does not "just fade away and die", according to the clinician in charge of his care

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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
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Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?