Voices Prince William and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, emerge from St Mary's with their newborn son

Compared to the grind of US politics, our Royal family offers a burst of romance

Paedophiles spared jail because of their age

A steward at Windsor Castle was given a suspended prison sentence today for grooming and abusing a young boy 25 years ago.

A Day That Shook The World: Windsor Castle fire

On 20 November 1992 the home of the British monarchy for nearly 1,000 years burst into flames destroying nine rooms, injuring one and risking priceless artworks.

Face to face with greatness: Thomas Lawrence

A new exhibition confirms that the Regency artist Thomas Lawrence was a formidable talent, says Adrian Hamilton

From regal Runnymede you'll find more majesty along the Thames

Try finding Runnymede on a road atlas of Britain and you may well be thwarted. The seminal place where the Magna Carta was sealed fails to appear on many maps – including mine. Which seems odd, given that this was the birthplace of civil rights and modern democracy. All the more reason, then, to pay a visit.

Gainsborough's forgotten rival Thomas Lawrence is recognised at last

Unseen works by one of greatest Regency portraitists to go on show

Celebrations on ice as monarch faces Diamond Jubilee in the red

The Queen is down to her last £1m and will go into the red in the year of her Diamond Jubilee in 2012, figures released by Buckingham Palace reveal.

Birthday Honours: Royal Victorian Order

DCVO

Susan Richenda The Lady Elton, CVO. Lady in Waiting to The Queen.

Is Stonehenge worth £51m? Doing the maths on the famous stone circle

Here’s a novel suggestion for how the government can help reduce the massive public deficit: sell Stonehenge. A survey of 500 estate agents, among other monuments studied, has placed the price of the ancient stone circle at a cool £51 million. It’s a drop in the ocean of the £156 billion gap between government income and expenditure. But it’s a start.

Harriet Garland: Inspirational mayor of Camden

Harriet Garland, who has died of leukaemia, was a memorable figure in the London borough of Camden, and was its mayor from 2004 to 2005. In her late sixties and far from trim, she abseiled down the walls of the town hall to raise money for charity, she chatted to Prince Charles about his painting at the Royal College of Physicians, and danced with old ladies when she visited them at their care homes. A longstanding member of the Labour Party and already active locally, mostly on behalf of the homeless and the mentally ill, she was elected to the council in 1990, where she exercised her powers with a winning combination of steeliness and charm.

Party leaders off and running in race for No 10

Gordon Brown launched the General Election campaign today with an appeal to the country to give him "a clear and straightforward mandate" to continue the work of economic recovery.

Royal servants: Sandringham driver wins royal double

Anthony Hardingham, a tractor driver on the Sandringham Estate, has now received two awards from the Queen. Mr Hardingham already holds the Royal Victorian Medal (Silver), awarded in 2004, but now holds an RVM plus bar. He is one of 38 people included in the New Year Honours List for their personal services to the Royal Family.

Give your seal of approval to the royal county

British breaks - Berkshire

Royal stables for sale to pay Palace repair bills

Stables built for King Henry VIII 473 years ago may be up for sale, because Buckingham Palace is desperate for money for urgent repairs. The old stables in Royal Mews, in the grounds of Hampton Court, would be expected to fetch £2m.

The Queen only corrected my spelling, says Shawcross

Biographer insists he had complete freedom to write about the Queen Mother

Habaayib ready to garner applause

Ed Dunlop-trained filly has strength to add Cherry Hinton victory to Albany Stakes win
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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
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform