Independent MP Michelle Thomson with first minister of Scotland and leader of the SNP  Nicola Sturgeon. Mrs Thomson resigned from the SNP after Police Scotland announced it was investigating her. Photograph:  Andy Buchanan/AFP/Getty Images

On May 9th, just two days after the general election, Nicola Sturgeon held a press conference on the banks of the Firth of Forth, outside Edinburgh. F(...)

The Conservatives hold the majority of seats along the southern end of the proposed HS2 high-speed train route, seats that will be crucial if the party is to have any chance of single-party rule after the next British general election. Photograph: Rui Vieira/PA

In times past, British monarchs had to keep a close eye on the barons in the shires, fearful that any change in loyalty threatened disaster to their h(...)