Hundreds of schools are preparing to offer free school meals to children aged four to seven. But is the scheme properly funded?
Teachers will join other public sector workers tomorrow in a day of strike action. Gemma Golds from Oxford explains why she's walking out.
UKIP stormed to victory in the European elections last night. But will Nigel Farage stand for Parliament in the south east?
Thousands of public sector workers walked out on July 10th 2014 protesting over pay, pensions, workloads and cuts. They included firemen, teachers, healthcare workers, librarians and refuse collectors. Christine Alsford rounds up the picture in the South.
Prime Minister David Cameron has said the Government's economic prudence has allowed it to invest an extra £1.1 billion on "absolutely vital" defence.
Prime Minister David Cameron has said the £1.1 billion military investment announced today will deal with global terrorism and cyber criminals rather than old-fashioned notions of border defence.
Writing in The Daily Telegraph, he said:
Today's investment demonstrates our approach to national security. There are those who believe we would be safer if we fundamentally retreated from the world. They see new warships and military investment and imagine a Government bent on foreign adventurism.
But the plain fact is that in the 21st century, you cannot defend the realm from the white cliffs of Dover. Terrorist plots hatched thousands of miles away threaten to cause harm on our streets. When fragile and lawless states fracture, migration flows can affect us right here.
In the announcement expected at Farnborough later today, the Prime Minister has set out new investment for defence projects in Farnborough and Portsmouth.
The statement sets out plans for establishing a UK Defence Solutions Centre in Farnborough to bring together industry, with support from Government, to develop the new defence technologies of the future.
Also outlined are plans for a £4 million UK Centre for Maritime Intelligent Systems based in Portsmouth. Government, industry and the Local Enterprise Partnership will bring together naval specialists to develop technology for use in autonomous unmanned boats, submarines or other vessels.
In an announcement from the Prime Minister's office, an extra £800 million of investment is promised for Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance. The intentnion is to extend the range and flexibility of defence options, including that of our Special Forces.
The statements says the money will be used to respond to the threat of global terrorism and hostage taking, with an investment of £300 million in existing capabilities including a new E-Scan radar for Typhoon and the purchase of the Portsmouth-based Ice Patrol Ship HMS Protector.
David Cameron will provide more details at the Farnborough International Airshow. The Prime Minister will also set out action taken by the Defence Growth Partnership of industry and Government to boost the UK defence sector.
– Prime Minister David Cameron
Having modern, technologically advanced and flexible Armed Forces to protect us and our interests is vital. Because of the difficult decisions we have taken to tackle the deficit we are able to make these vital investments in our defence capabilities. We are also taking action to sustain our thriving defence industry, as part of our long-term economic plan to back business, create jobs and secure a brighter future for hardworking people.”
Phil Hornby talks to 91 year old Baroness Trumpington about a close encounter with Lloyd George - and the famous V-sign she flicked in the House of Lords. She's recently published her memoirs, "Coming up Trumps". She starts by remembering growing up in Goodnestone near Sandwich in Kent.
Phil Hornby with Labour candidate in Brighton Pavilion Purna Sen, Rehman Chishti the Conservative MP for Gillingham and Rainham, and Jackie Porter the Lib Dem candidate in Winchester. With a guest appearance by the irrepressible Baroness Trumpington
As Nigel Farage prepares to take his MEPs to the European Parliament, a look back at his first visit there. Meridian went with him to Strasbourg in July 1999
Folkestone was the last sight of England for tens of thousands of soldiers crossing the Channel to fight in the First World War trenches of France and Belgium. And now a striking new commemorative arch has been lifted into place on The Leas in memory of the many who did not return.
It'll be officially opened by Prince Harry as part of the centenary commemorations in August. Derek Johnson has been following the story. In this report, he spoke to Paul Emden from the Step Short project, architect Philip Gearing and Councillor David Monk from Shepway Council.