D&S column: the future of our High Streets

The future of Britain’s High Streets has never been far from the headlines this summer. 

Some famous retailers like Marks and Spencer and House of Fraser have announced store closures and this week another national brand – Homebase – set in train a further contraction. 

D&S column: real progress in tackling the housing crisis

Like many readers, the day I took possession of the keys to my first home was one of the most memorable. 

Along with going to starting my first job, getting married and becoming a father for the first time, it’s right up there as one of those rites of passage in the journey of life. 

D&S column: the lessons of this summer's moor fires

One of the abiding images of this long, hot, record-breaking summer will be the wildfires which devastated huge swathes of the landscape above Manchester and Bolton.

The fires consumed thousands of acres of precious heather moorland, the distinctive feature of our Northern Uplands.

D&S column: being held to account in Parliament

When American politicians come to pay us a visit in Parliament, there are two lines you can be sure will be in their speech. One is a Winston Churchill quote, the other is how relieved they are that they won’t ever have to face Prime Minister’s Questions.

D&S column: pre-school excellence at Osmotherley

I found the huge bin of old-style milk bottle tops quite irresistible and I plunged my hand deep into the silvery pile of crinkly foil.

It made a very satisfying noise and reminded me of the days when everybody had milk delivered to their doorsteps in glass bottles with tops like this.