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  • Bid to end 'inequality' in Scottish nursery provision

    January 14, 2014 12:41 AM 21

    MSPs have been urged to change legislation to end "inequality" in government-funded nursery provision. Only half of children born in 2011 and 2012 will be guaranteed two years of nursery provision, according to research by think tank Reform Scotland. Holyrood's education and culture committee is looking at the issue as part of its consideration of the Children

  • I never signed letter to Cameron - Tory MP

    January 13, 2014 10:17 PM 28

    The senior Tory backbencher Andrew Tyrie - who is chairman of the Treasury Select Committee - says his name appeared on a Eurosceptic letter to the prime minister even though he never signed it and doesn't agree with it. Mr Tyrie told the BBC that he had seen a draft of the letter which called for Parliament to have a national veto over EU laws but did not agree

  • Sunderland wife killer who committed suicide 'heard voices'

    January 13, 2014 9:49 PM 22

    A man who stabbed his wife to death before killing himself had previously complained of hearing voices in his head, an inquest has heard. James Stokoe and his wife May, both 79, were found dead in a bedroom at their house in Sunderland in May. The inquest at Sunderland Civic Centre heard Mr Stokoe had repeatedly spoken about harming his wife in the weeks

  • Lobbying Bill is a "damp squib" says Labour minister

    January 13, 2014 8:36 PM 30

    Labour's business spokesperson in the House of Lords, Baroness Hayter said the Transparency of Lobbying Bill will do nothing to aid transparency in its current form. She was speaking to an amendment tabled by the crossbench peer Lord Hardie to the bill at report stage on Monday 13 January. The amendment, which was supported by Labour peers, aims to broaden

  • William Hague: British warship to aid Syria chemical weapons disposal

    January 13, 2014 6:57 PM 29

    British warship HMS Montrose is to join a convoy transporting the first consignment of chemical weapons from Syria, William Hague has said. The foreign secretary hailed the disposal of Syria's chemical weapons stockpile as a "strong example of international cooperation". He confirmed that the UK would also assist US efforts to "neutralise" the most dangerous

  • Muggers beat pensioner, 79, so badly she was too scared to tell anyone what happened for five days

    January 13, 2014 6:40 PM 33

    This elderly woman was so badly beaten up by a gang of muggers that she was too scared to tell anyone about her ordeal for five days. The unnamed victim, 79, was attacked as she walked home from a shopping trip to Tesco in Haughton Green, Manchester. She was cornered by four thugs, before being knocked to the ground and repeatedly punched in the face. Despite

  • Huddersfield man 'fired 34 bullets' before being shot by police

    January 13, 2014 6:33 PM 23

    A gunman fired 34 bullets before he was fatally shot in the head by a police officer, an inquest has heard. Alistair Bell, 42, wounded an unarmed officer who had gone to arrest him at his house in Huddersfield on 27 December 2010. Firearms officers surrounded the address in Cockley Hill Lane, Kirkheaton, overnight after Mr Bell continued to fire shots

  • Tube staff turn the tables on Boris Johnson with their quote of the day

    January 13, 2014 5:06 PM 24

    If Boris Johnson thinks people have forgotten about promises he made four years ago, he might want to hop on a Tube to south London. London Underground staff at Clapham South have used one of the mayor’s own comments about ticket office closures as their quote of the day. They wrote the quote, apparently made by Mr Johnson in 2010, on a notice board

  • Richard Haass plan 'must be examined in detail' says Robinson

    January 13, 2014 5:06 PM 26

    Northern Ireland's past, flags and parading Any work on the Haass proposals should examine in detail all 340 elements in the document, according to Northern Ireland's first minister. The negotiations, chaired by US diplomat Richard Haass and Harvard academic Prof Meghan O'Sullivan, ended on New Year's Eve without agreement. Peter Robinson told the assembly

  • EU aims to clarify migrant benefit rules with guide

    January 13, 2014 3:10 PM 30

    The European Commission has published new guidelines to help the 28 member states decide which EU migrants qualify for welfare benefits. The guidelines aim to clarify the EU-wide "habitual residence test", which national authorities apply to migrants. On 1 January the EU labour market was opened fully to Bulgaria and Romania, prompting calls in the UK and elsewhere