The main story for most is what the Times calls the high-stakes diplomacy between Britain and Russia over the poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal.
“Putin raises the stakes” is the Daily Mail’s headline. As the investigation into their attempted murders continues, the Mail quotes Whitehall sources as saying Mr Skripal was poisoned when he touched the door handle of his BMW, which had been smeared with a deadly nerve agent.
According to the Telegraph, a Russian media source claimed he was found with “strangulation marks” on his neck. The Times reports that he was understood to be in poor health, suffering arthritis and heart problems.
The Telegraph has a cartoon showing President Putin’s face as a doomsday clock with the 11h hour fast approaching.
For the Financial Times, the prime minister faces a difficult dilemma: how far can she go to ensure she inflicts pain on Moscow while at the same time not hurting Britain’s economic and diplomatic interests.
The Mail says demands for a co-ordinated boycott of the World Cup in Russia are growing. It reports that the Liberal Democrat leader, Vince Cable, has called on the EU, which has 10 teams in the tournament, to withdraw as a bloc.
In the Sun’s view, Fifa – football’s world governing body – should pull the tournament out of Russia.
‘Brightest star’ Hawking
Professor Stephen Hawking’s death was announced too late for the print editions but is the main item on the news websites.
The Telegraph describes him as Britain’s most famous modern day scientist, a genius with a razor-sharp wit who dedicated his life to unlocking the secrets of the Universe.
For the Mail, he was one of science’s biggest celebrities since Albert Einstein. In the Guardian’s words, he was the brightest star in the firmament of science, whose insights shaped modern cosmology and inspired global audiences in the millions.
The Guardian leads with President Trump’s sacking of his Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, saying the move has sent US diplomacy into fresh turmoil.
It says the manner of his termination was abrupt, even by the standards of the current administration.
For the New York Times, the Texas oil baron never adapted to the power dynamics of Mr Trump’s world or to the president’s world view.
The New Statesman’s website says Mr Tillerson’s successor, Mike Pompeo, is much more in line with Mr Trump politically than his corporate predecessor.
The chancellor’s upbeat Spring Statement makes the lead for the Financial Times and the Express.
The FT says Philip Hammond stayed true to his word by not announcing new tax or spending commitments in the statement.
But he dangled a carrot at his ministerial colleagues, offering more money for public services in the autumn Budget, the paper adds. The Express has the headline: “At last! Tax cuts on the way”.
A number of papers reject the idea that we should get rid of the penny or two pence coins, after a ministerial review into the future of the coppers was announced by the Treasury on Tuesday.
It’s the lead for the Mirror, which says small change could be a thing of the past. The Sun warns that shops will simply round up every price and charities will miss out on a fortune in spare change.