It happened today – this day in history – August 13

1415: Henry V’s army lands at the mouth of the River Seine in France.

1521: Spanish conquistadors under Hernan Cortes capture Aztec Emperor Cuauhtemoc in Tenochtitlan marking the end of the Aztec Empire.

1624: Cardinal Richelieu is appointed Chief Minister of France by Louis XIII.

1642: Dutch astronomer Christiaan Huygens discovers the south polar cap of Mars.

1704: A combined British, German and Dutch army led by John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough, decisively beats the French and Bavarians at the Battle of Blenheim.

1732: Voltaire’s “Zaire” premieres in Paris.

1784: Parliament accepts East India Company Act 1784, bringing the East India Company’s rule in India under the control of the British Government.

1792: Revolutionaries imprison French royals, including Marie Antoinette.

1799: The British fleet under Lord Seymour overthrows Suriname.

1814: The Cape of Good Hope is formally ceded to Britiain by the Dutch.

1876: The first complete performance of Richard Wagner’s Ring Cycle at the opening of The Bayreuth Festspielhaus.

1889: William Gray patents the coin-operated telephone.

1898: US forces capture Manila during the Spanish-American War.

1899: Birth of director Alfred Hitchcock in Leytonstone.

1908: Edward VII meets with Emperor Franz Joseph of Austria at Ischl in an effort to persuade the Emperor to advise Germany against aggressive anti-British policies.

1910: Death of Florence Nightingale aged 90.

1912: French composer Jules Massenet dies aged 70.

1913: Stainless steel is invented by Harry Brearley in Sheffield.

1923: The Turkish National Congress selects Mustafa Kemal Ataturk Pasja as president.

1932: Adolf Hitler refuses President von Hindenburg’s proposal for him to become vice-chancellor of Germany.

1940: Hermann Goering’s “Adlertag” (Eagle Day) offensive, intended to destroy the RAF, results in 48 German aircraft being shot down while 25 British planes are lost.

1941: The Red army evacuates Smolensk.

1942: The ‘Manhattan Project’ commences with the aim of developing the atomic bomb.

1944: The British 8th Army occupies Florence.

1946: Author H G Wells dies aged 79.

1948: Hungarian boxer László Papp wins the first of the consecutive Olympic gold medals at the Games in London.

1952: The original version of Lieber and Stoller’s Hound Dog is recorded by Willie Mae (Big Mama) Thornton.


1960: The Central African Republic and Chad proclaim independence from France.

1961: Troops in East Germany seal off the border between East and West Berlin, shutting off the escape route for thousands of refugees from the East.

1964: The Supremes record Baby Love at Motown.

Singles chart:

  1. Do Wah Diddy Diddy – Manfred Mann
  2. A Hard Day’s Night – The Beatles
  3. Call Up The Groups – The Barron Knights
  4. It’s All Over Now – The Rolling Stones
  5. I Won’t Forget You – Jim Reeves
  6. Tobacco Road – The Nashville Teens
  7. I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself – Dusty Springfield
  8. I Get Around – The Beach Boys
  9. On The Beach – Cliff Richard
  10. It’s Only Make Believe – Billy Fury

1966: China announces plans for a “new leap forward”, a cultural revolution which heralds a purge of Chairman Mao’s rivals.

1967: Fleetwood Mac make their live debut at the National Jazz and Blues Festival in Windsor. Also on the bill are Chicken Shack, featuring singer Christine Perfect, who would go on to join the band in 1970 and marry bassist John McVie.

1967: The Monkees – Headquarters

Album chart:

  1. Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Heart Club Band – The Beatles
  2. Headquarters – The Monkees
  3. The Sound Of Music – Original Soundtrack
  4. Mamas And Papas Deliver – The Mamas and Papas
  5. Are You Experienced – The Jimi Hendrix Experience
  6. Best Of – The Beach Boys
  7. Fiddler On The Roof – Original London Cast
  8. Jigsaw – The Shadows
  9. Dr Zhivago – Original Soundtrack
  10. Live At The Talk Of The Town – Tom Jones

1968: Working at Abbey road Studios, after recording the backing track to Sexy Sadie for the White Album, The Beatles squeezed into a storeroom where they recorded Yer Blues live. Invigorated by the day’s work, after dinner and more than a few drinks and joints, John and George return to the studio with Yoko and roadie Mal Evans where they put together a song on the spot called What’s The New Mary Jane, which until the release of Anthology 3 in 1996 is only heard on bootlegs.

1971: Saxophonist King Curtis (Ousley) is stabbed to death by a vagrant on the front steps of his New York home. On the same day, John Lennon flies from Heathrow Airport to New York. He never sets foot on British soil again.

1977: More than 200 protesters are arrested as violence erupts during demonstrations in Lewisham against a National Front march.

1982: Soul singer Joe Tex dies at his home in Texas following a heart attack.

1985: Three-year-old Jamie Gavin from Dublin becomes the world’s youngest heart and lung transplant patient following an operation at Harefield Hospital, Middlesex.

1988: Robert Smith of The Cure marries childhood sweetheart Mary Poole.

1990: On TV (Monday)


06.00Pages from Ceefax

06.30BBC Breakfast News

08.55Regional News and Weather


09.05But First This….Belle and Sebastian


10.00News and weather

10.05Double Dare


10.55Five to Eleven

11.00News and weather

11.05Our House

11.55The O Zone

12.00News and weather

12.05The Garden Party

12.55Regional News and Weather

13.00One O’Clock News


13.50The Allotment Show

14.20The Six Million Dollar Man
The Last Kamikaze. Steve Austin (Lee Majors) is sent to a South Pacific island to retrieve an atomic warhead.

15.10Adventure, Ring of Fire

15.35Head of the Class

16.00The Sleeping Princess

16.10The New Lassie

16.35Defenders of the Earth


17.05What’s that Noise?


18.00Six O’Clock News and weather

18.30Newsroom South East


Continuing the search for the best amateur cook in Britain. Introduced by Lloyd Grossman

A comic slice of Merseyside life by Carla Lane and starring June Boht.

20.30Up to Something! Comedy series.

21.00Nine O’Clock News

21.30Take Me Home
A love story in three parts starring Keith Barron, Maggie O’Neill, The more carelessly passionate the affair becomes, the greater the danger.

22.30Come Dancing 90
The formation teams take the floor Manchester compete against Sheffield. Angela Rippon and Charles Nove host the action from the Tower Ballroom, Blackpool.

23.00Miami Vice

23.50A Certain Age
The last of six programmes about people in their 50s.


07.10Open University

09.00Mastermind 1980

09.30Small World

09.40Hungarian Grand Prix

10.15Songs of Praise

10.50Cricket: Second Test
England v India. Live coverage of the whole of the morning’s play for the Cornhill Insurance Test from Old Trafford.

13.05Past and Present Preserved


13.35Cricket: Second Test

18.30DEF II Gimme 8
What are young people in other countries watching on TV?


19.30Now the War Is Over
A series of films about Britain from 1945-51.

20.10The Hostages Speak
Three hostages – all captured in very different circumstances in Beirut, the Netherlands and France – relive their ordeals with the help of reconstruction.

21.00The Best of Saturday Night Clive

21.50Hit and Run
Last in the series. Following complaints about her show, Ruby Wax is summoned to BBC’s Open Air in Manchester.

22.20Fishing the Hard Way


23.15Making Their Mark

23.45Building Sights




09.25He-Man and the Masters of the Universe

09.50Thames News and Weather

09.55Inspector Gadget

10.25Vicky The Viking

10.50News Headlines

10.55Short Story Theatre

11.25Just For The Record

11.50Regional news and weather

11.55The Adventures Of Tintin


12.25Home and Away

12.55Regional news and weather

13.00News at One

13.20Santa Barbara

13.50A Country Practice

14.20Make Believe Marriage

15.15News Headlines

15.20Regional news and weather


15.55Bangers and Mash

16.00Thomas The Tank Engine and Friends

16.15She-Ra: Princess of Power

16.40Children’s Ward

17.10Sporting Triangles

17.40News and Weather

18.00Home and Away

18.30Regional news and weather

19.00The Cook Report

19.30Coronation Street

20.00Everybody’s Equal
Quiz show hosted by Chris Tarrant

20.30Just For Laughs

21.00Vincent and Theo
Dramatisation of the life of Vincent van Gogh starring Tim Roth.

22.00News at Ten

22.30Regional news and weather

22.35Vincent and Theo
Concluding part


00.05The New Avengers


06.00Noah’s Ark

06.20Business Daily

06.30The Channel 4 Daily

09.25The Art Of Landscape

11.00As It Happens

12.00Anything Goes

12.30Business Daily

13.00Sesame Street

14.00In Charge

14.30Film: Johnny Frenchman (1946)
Ealing comedy about a feud when fishermen from Brittany sail into Cornish waters for their catch.


17.00TV 101


18.00The Stars

18.30Happy Days

19.00Channel 4 News



20.30Don’t Quote Me

21.00Power In The Pacific: Japan Comes First

22.00A Town Like Alice
Dramatisation of the novel by Neville Shute starring Bryan Brown

23.00Film: The Chosen (1981)
The friendship of two Jewish boys in post war Brooklyn

1991: The Prince of Wales resigns as patron of Scotland’s national museum over a competition to design a new building.

1993: The World Athletics Championships open at Stuttgart.

1995: British mountaineer Alison Hargeaves, the first woman to climb Mt Everest alone without bottled oxygen, dies in a storm on the summit of K2 in Pakistan aged 33.

1999: Mick Jagger’s 1990 marriage to model Jerry Hall in Bali s declared null and void at the High Court in London.

2002: Singer Adam Ant (Stuart Goddard) pleads guilty to threatening drinkers at The Prince Of Wales Pub in London in January.

2004: 156 Congolese Tutsi refugees are massacred at the Gatumba refugee camp in Burundi. On the same day, the Olympic Games opens at Athens and Real Madrid sign Liverpool star Michael Owen.

2013: Jon Brookes, drummer with The Charlatans dies aged 44. He had been receiving treatment for a brain tumour.

2015: Swedish Prosecutors announce they are dropping allegations against Wikileaks founder Julian Assange of sexual molestation and coercion.

2016: Swimmer Michael Phelps ends his career at the Rio Olympics as part of the winning 4×100 medley relay, his record 23rd gold medal. On the same day, Mo Farah wins the 10,000m. Also, R2D2 actor Kenny Baker dies aged 81.

2018: Ugandan politician and pop singer Bobi Wine is arrested by the Ugandan army at a campaign rally in Arua and later allegedly tortured.

2020: Israel strikes a historic deal with the United Arab Emirates to normalize relations and Israel suspends plans to annex parts of the occupied West Bank.

2021: Singer-songwriter Nanci Griffith dies aged 68.

BIRTHDAYS: Madhur Jaffrey, actress/writer, 89; Susan Jameson, actress, 81; Marie Helvin, model, 70; Paul Greengrass, director, 67; Feargal Sharkey, singer (The Undertones), 64; Michael Bradley, bassist, (The Undertones) 63; Phil “The Power” Taylor, darts champion, 62; Stuart Maconie, broadcaster/writer, 61; John Slattery, actor, 60; Alan Shearer, footballer/pundit, 52; Sebastian Stan, actor, 40; James Morrison, singer-songwriter, 38; Lucas Moura (da Silva), footballer, 30.