Fourteen hospitals across Scotland have ceased charging for car park use following a groundbreaking move by the Scottish government.
Local heroes make up the bulk of today's new year's honours list, but members of Britain's most successful Olympics team in a century are stealing the headlines.
The government may ask a private firm to manage its proposed superdatabase of communications data.
International development secretary Douglas Alexander has expressed his frustration after Israel refused to allow a 48-hour ceasefire against Gaza.
The government has no intention of legalising assisted suicide, Gordon Brown has made clear.
Patients are to be encouraged to comment on their GPs' performance on an NHS website.
Funding to help hospitals cope with working-hours limits for doctors to be introduced next year is not reaching the frontline, it has been claimed.
The government faces criticism today for using too much "jargonboogle".
The Conservatives have expressed concern over the number of teachers off sick, which they claim reaches 15,000 every day.
Govt urged to put brakes on speeding
David Cameron has accused Labour of being "corrupted by power" in his new year message.
The Conservatives have drawn attention to knife crime as the year draws to an end, claiming the number of fatal stabbings reached a record high in 2008.
Around 140,000 households are receiving more than £20,000 every year from benefits, according to the Conservatives.
Foreign secretary David Miliband has warned Israel's airstrikes on the Gaza Strip represent a "very dangerous and very dark moment" for the region.
The recession will probably result in the loss of around one million jobs, an employment thinktank has warned.
Nearly 5,000 extra sexual offences would be detected each year if police improved their clear-up rate to those of the best five forces, according to the Liberal Democrats.
Rebel MPs may defeat the government in the new year as opposition grows to Labour's plans for Heathrow and Royal Mail.
Five bishops have publicly criticised Labour's economic policy with some questioning its morality.
The prime minister will call on Britons to maintain a stiff upper lip to pass the test of the recession.
The Conservatives are considering offering three different tax cut proposals deesigned to help those suffering from the effects of the credit crunch, the shadow chancellor has said.
Movie style age ratings are being considered by the government to protect children from offensive or potentially harmful material on the internet.
The head of the British Retail Consortium (BRC) has urged the government to dramatically reduce the business rate retailers will have to pay in April 2009 in order to save jobs.
The Conservative party will go on the offensive at the beginning of 2009 with a raft of new policy proposals to take the electorate's mind off the economy.
David Miliband has branded Robert Mugabe a "stain" on Zimbabwe and called on renewed efforts to remove him from power.