News Council tax set to rise by as much as five per cent

The amount paid by households towards the cost of policing looks set to rise by up to five per cent this year as the Government faces a potential show down with its flagship Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) who are demanding above inflation increases in council tax to combat swingeing budget cuts.

Some of the alleged crimes took place at Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham

Birmingham neurosurgeon Nafees Hamid charged with 10 further sex offences

The 50-year-old had already been charged with sexually assaulting a female patient

Birmingham hit-and-run: Wolverhampton man charged with causing death of elderly cyclist by dangerous driving and failing to stop at scene

A man has been charged with causing death by dangerous driving after a hit-and-run in Birmingham that killed an elderly cyclist.

Energy regulator Ofgem orders power companies to 'cut costs for consumers'

Ofgem tells operators to do their bit to cut bills

The energy watchdog Ofgem waded into the controversy around household energy bills today by forcing Britain’s local electricity network operators to do more to lower costs for consumers.

Nikki Sinclaire MEP

MEP Nikki Sinclaire 'overwhelmed' by support as UK’s first 'sex-change parliamentarian'

MEP Nikki Sinclaire says she is “overwhelmed” by the volume of support she received after revealing herself as Britain’s first “sex-change parliamentarian” after undergoing gender reassignment surgery more than two decades ago.

David Cameron insists that squeeze on public-sector spending is permanent

Prime Minister outlines vision of money-saving, slimmed-down government after 2015 election

Former Tory chief whip Andrew Mitchell

Plebgate: IPPC criticises police officers over 'false account' of meeting with Andrew Mitchell following Downing Street gates row

Watchdog says that there should be a panel to determine whether three police officers gave a false account of meeting

Five women rescued as police raid suspected brothels in Birmingham

Two women and three men arrested following late-night raids

Microlight pilot killed after crashing into electricity pylon

A man has died after his “microlight” aircraft crashed into an electricity pylon in Staffordshire.

Rebecca Shuttleworth was described as a 'monster' by police

Keanu Williams death: Mother who beat child to death was 'invisible to authorities' thanks to 'collective failure' of Birmingham child services

Serious case review concludes that professionals involved in care of Keanu Williams failed to meet even basic standards of good practice

Teachers stage one-day strike in defiance of Education Secretary

Thousands of schools close as staff members protest Michael Gove’s refusal to open dialogue on pay, pensions and workload

Industrial action - the latest in a wave of regional strikes - has been organised by two of England's biggest teaching unions

Thousands of schoolchildren affected as teachers strike over pay

Industrial action - the latest in a wave of regional strikes - has been organised by two of England's biggest teaching unions

Book of a lifetime: The Old Wives' Tale, by Arnold Bennett

My friend Lottie Moggach gave me the Penguin Classics edition of this book and the truth is that I never got around to reading it. The appeal of "classics" rather gets knocked out of you when you study English Literature at university. There always seemed to be better things to do than tackle 615 pages by a writer better known for an omelette than for his work.

Hot shot: In-form Karen Carney scores the first goal for England yesterday

England 6 Belarus 0 match report: Karen Carney fires superb hat-trick as England's women cut loose

Karen Carney's superb first-half hat-trick helped Brent Hills present a strong case to take over as permanent head coach of England women after this demolition of Belarus in their opening World Cup qualifier in Bournemouth yesterday.

Chief constable Suzette Davenport and murder victim Kevin Nunes

Top officers may face charges over cover-up claims

Police chiefs are among force staff who could face prosecution for perverting the course of justice in murder trial

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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
Ukraine crisis: The phoney war is over as Russian troops and armour pour across the border

The phoney war is over

Russian troops and armour pour into Ukraine
Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

The world’s entire food system is under attack - and Britain is most at risk, according to a new study
Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Seoul's plastic surgery industry is booming thanks to the popularity of the K-Pop look
From Mozart to Orson Welles: Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

After the death of Sandy Wilson, 90, who wrote his only hit musical in his twenties, John Walsh wonders what it's like to peak too soon and go on to live a life more ordinary
Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Fears are mounting that Vladimir Putin has instructed hackers to target banks like JP Morgan
Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years

Salomé: A head for seduction

Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years. Now audiences can meet the Biblical femme fatale in two new stage and screen projects
From Bram Stoker to Stanley Kubrick, the British Library's latest exhibition celebrates all things Gothic

British Library celebrates all things Gothic

Forthcoming exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination will be the UK's largest ever celebration of Gothic literature
The Hard Rock Café's owners are embroiled in a bitter legal dispute - but is the restaurant chain worth fighting for?

Is the Hard Rock Café worth fighting for?

The restaurant chain's owners are currently embroiled in a bitter legal dispute
Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival

In search of Caribbean soul food

Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival
11 best face powders

11 best face powders

Sweep away shiny skin with our pick of the best pressed and loose powder bases
England vs Norway: Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Lack of Englishmen at leading Premier League clubs leaves manager hamstrung
Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

Di Maria and Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

They both inherited the iconic shirt at Old Trafford, but the £59.7m new boy is joining a club in a very different state
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone