Voters know that the NHS needs reform

On this night two years ago, millions of people stood on their doorsteps for the second week running to applaud the NHS as it grappled with the onset of the Covid pandemic. It seemed like a very unBritish gesture and... Read more

Boris turned up for an afternoon liaison – but it was far from a romp

A session in front of the liaison committee is never the saucy romp it sounds. The name conjures a sense of intrigue; heaving bosoms, the Vicomte de Valmont and the Marquise de Merteuil indulging in “the hurly-burly of the chaise... Read more

Joe Biden is president in name only but the US establishment refuses to admit it

America is in desperate need of a determined and visionary leader, but has found itself stuck with an ineffective, erratic and gaffe-addled figurehead. Joe Biden is US President in name only, the weakest, least powerful holder of that office for... Read more

Anyone Can Sing: the TV show claiming it can turn the tone deaf into opera singers

“Why do you think you can’t sing?” a vocal coach asked Chris, participant in Anyone Can Sing (Sky Arts). “I’ve listened to myself,” shrugged Chris. Finally, a television talent contest in which the contestants aren’t deluded about their own abilities.... Read more

Even in retirement, Bruce Willis will always be Hollywood’s rueful anti-action hero

In the nick of time, Quentin Tarantino saw a chance to rescue Willis from these doldrums, and presented the whole middle story of Pulp Fiction (1994) to him on a platter. As Butch, the boxer bribed to lose his final... Read more

Mariupol’s survivors had to drink melted snow … but now there’s none left

Kristina Kurapova does not know if her husband, a soldier in the Ukrainian military, is dead or alive. “I haven’t spoken to him in five days,” the mother of two said. When asked where her husband was fighting, tears fell... Read more

Normandy row erupts over wind turbines a stone’s throw from British D-Day war graves

A feud has erupted between two Normandy villages over the erection of wind farms a stone’s throw from British war graves, with detractors calling it a slur on the memory of soldiers. The row started after the village of Le Manoir... Read more

Disney president says half of all its characters should represent minorities

Half of all Disney characters should represent a racial minority or the LGBTQ community in the future, the company’s president has said in a leaked video. The plans were discussed in a company-wide Zoom call on Monday in which Karey... Read more

Britain could send armoured Land Rovers to help Mariupol humanitarian relief effort

Britain may send armoured Land Rovers on a mercy mission to the besieged city of Mariupol, Boris Johnson has said. The Prime Minister said the UK was looking at “going up a gear” in its support for Ukraine, including possibly... Read more

Eight sanctioned Russian oligarchs were given ‘golden visas’ to live in Britain

Layla Moran, the foreign affairs spokesman for the Liberal Democrats who extracted the information, said: “For too long, the Government has rolled out the red carpet for Putin’s cronies. These people should never have been able to buy their way... Read more

Delays to Ukrainian refugee applications ‘unacceptable’, admits minister

The refugees minister has blamed Home Office red tape for the “unacceptable” delays to Ukrainians’ applications for refuge in UK homes that have seen just 2,700 visas granted in two weeks. Lord Harrington, masterminding Michael Gove’s Homes for Ukraine scheme,... Read more

Jamie Wallis praised by MPs after coming out as trans

A Conservative politician who has become the first transgender MP won plaudits from across the Commons for his bravery on Wednesday. Jamie Wallis shared a statement in the early hours of Wednesday morning, saying “it’s time” to make public his... Read more

Boris Johnson blows cold on onshore wind revolution

Boris Johnson has hinted he is cautious over plans for an onshore wind revolution amid Cabinet fears that it would mean thousands of turbines are built in Tory heartlands.  At a hearing of Parliament’s Liaison Committee, the Prime Minister stressed his... Read more

Boris Johnson refuses to say No 10 parties were illegal, despite fines

But Mr Johnson declined to say he accepted that fact. At the liaison committee, SNP MP Pete Wishart asked Mr Johnson to accept “there has been criminality committed”, given Scotland Yard’s decision to issue fines.  Mr Johnson replied: “I have... Read more

How to pick the right Isa – and how much you should pay

Investors could be hundreds of thousands of pounds better off by switching to a cheaper Isa provider. Managing fees is as important as investment returns to ensure your savings grow. Someone who saves £1,600 a month into their Isa (taking... Read more

How will the rise in the energy price cap affect my payments and should I fix my tariff?

The energy price cap will rise by £693 to £1,971 tomorrow, piling more pressure on to already struggling households.  Traditionally, the solution to rising gas and electricity tariffs was for customers to shop around for a better deal. However, doing... Read more

How to invest in buy-to-let: where £25,000 will earn you the highest returns

A £25,000 budget would be enough to cover the £15,530 deposit on an average flat, plus stamp duty. A cash sum of this size would also just about cover a 25pc deposit on an average terraced house in the area,... Read more

Questor: United Utilities offers relative safety amid soaring inflation and war in Ukraine. Buy

This could further strengthen the appeal of defensive firms that are less affected by the economic outlook. Utility companies could be viewed as a safe haven during periods of extreme stock market volatility. United Utilities is also attractive from an income... Read more

Warning as paper £20 and £50 notes to be withdrawn from circulation

Households have six months left to spend their “paper” £20 and £50 notes in shops before they are withdrawn from circulation.  The Bank of England has “encouraged” anyone who has paper notes at home to “spend or deposit them at... Read more

Landlords left to plug the gap from rising energy bills

Mr Irons said: “I live in an HMO out of necessity, not choice, and I have no influence over the other tenants’ use of gas and electricity. Meanwhile, the cost of my food shopping has increased by 20pc. I have... Read more

3.6 million pensioners handed retirement tax boost

Pensions can be accessed from age 55 and the tax relief can magnify returns. Everyone can get a minimum of 20pc tax relief on pension contributions until April 2024, when the rate drops to 19pc. Higher-rate payers can still claim... Read more

We’re all getting poorer this week – and thanks to Rishi Sunak, it will get worse

But despite how bleak the next month will be for our bank balances, the situation will only get worse. The energy price cap will not fall back to its near-£1,200 figure any time soon, mobile phone bills will not go... Read more

Council tax calculator: rebates halved as bills rise across the board

Average households will pay £2,000 a year in council tax from April, as it emerged one in three homes will have their government rebate effectively halved by new rises.  “Band D” council tax in England – the standard measure for... Read more

How I found out my grandfather was a Nazi

Joining her will be two other speakers, who will pass on memories from very different perspectives. Eitan Neishlos, 42, an Australian tech entrepreneur and philanthropist, will tell how his Jewish grandmother narrowly survived the Nazi death squads, courtesy of a... Read more

Is there any point to posh salt?

When did we all become salt snobs? In May, a lavish cookbook called Sea Salt will arrive, a celebration of what is, after all, a simple chemical compound, NaCl, with a sodium atom for each one of chlorine. Superficially, there’s... Read more