In the chaos of coalition, the best storyteller will win

People died – 19 Labour MPs in total, many of them from sheer exhaustion at the stress, the all-night sittings, and the fact that every single day the government might fall. I found their stories often very moving. Joe Harper, one of the whips, died after delaying an operation so he could be around to […]

Disappearing Glasgow: documenting the demolition of a city’s troubled past

He was one of the tens of thousands of Glaswegians who were uprooted from the worst slum conditions in Europe to a “completely new life”. “There is an old saying in Glasgow that went: ‘We never knew how poor we were until someone told us.’ It was only then, when we entered our new home […]

All Day Long: a Portrait of Britain at Work review – is our labour really working?

Ina, who hasn’t told her boyfriend what she does, is happy for Biggs to use her real name; R, who worked in Pret a Manger for several years, isn’t. R earned £200 a week, which rose to £245 if the store got its weekly bonus. The bonus was dependent on the mystery shopper employed by […]

Smiling Scots, worried Welsh and lazy Londoners: survey maps regional personality types

Much of Wales and districts in the midlands had high levels of anxious, depressed and temperamental people. The south west, southern England and most of Scotland had more emotionally stable populations, where people came over as more calm and relaxed. These traits might in some way be infectious, Rentfrow said, with emotional feelings spreading and […]

Inflation basket of goods highlights seven decades of changing UK lifestyles

In 1947, the Ministry of Labour and National Service began recording the prices of a “typical” shopping basket to help calculate inflation. As the prices of the various items in the basket change over time, so does the total cost of the basket. Each year, the basket is updated and new products and services are […]

How we are becoming nation of digital makers – BBC News

There have been notable successes in helping children who might feel let down by the traditional educational system: a severely dyslexic child designed a game in Scratch to help children recognise letters and sentences a child who struggled with numeracy created a similar one about number bonds a child who had been excluded for disruptive […]

UK should begin decriminalising drugs, say Richard Branson and Nick Clegg

Portugal decriminalised all drugs at the turn of the century. In the nearly 15 years since, the country has seen drug abuse drop by half, with the money previously spent on prohibition enforcement spent instead on reconnecting drug addicts with society. Read the full story here