It happened today – this day in history – February 26

1564: Birth of dramatist Christopher Marlowe in Canterbury.

1606: First known European landing in Australia by Dutch navigator Willem Jansz.

1616: The Roman Inquisition delivers an injunction to Galileo demanding he abandon his belief in heliocentrism, which states the Earth and planets revolve around the Sun.

1797: The Bank of England issues first £1 note.

1802: Birth of French author Victor Hugo.

1815: Napoleon Bonaparte and his supporters leave Elba to start a 100 day re-conquest of France.

1839: The first Grand National steeplechase at Aintree Racecourse won by 5/1favourite Lottery.

1863: Abraham Lincoln signs National Currency Act, establishing a single national US currency.

1869: Franz Schubert’s Symphony number 4, “The Tragic”, premieres.

1885: The Berlin Conference gives Congo to Belgium and Nigeria to Great Britain.

1891: Henrik Ibsen’s “Hedda Gabler” premieres in Oslo.

1912: Miners go on strike in Britain.

1916: Mutual signs Charlie Chaplin to a film contract.

1917: The first jazz records are recorded – “Dixie Jazz Band One Step” and “Livery Stable Blues” by Original Dixieland Jass (sic) Band for the Victor Talking Machine Company. On the same day, the Russian Army mutinies when Tsar Nicholas II orders them to quell civil unrest in Petrograd.

1918: Stands at the Hong Kong Jockey Club collapse and burn, killing 604 people.

1924: Adolf Hitler goes on trial for treason after the Beer Hall Putsch in Munich.

1933: The Golden Gate Bridge groundbreaking ceremony is held at Crissy Field, San Francisco.

1935: The Luftwaffe is re-formed under Reichsmarshall Hermann Goering. On the same day, RADAR is first demonstrated by Robert Watson-Watt.

1950: Leonard Bernstein’s “Age of Anxiety” premieres in New York.

1952: Winston Churchill announces that Britain has its own atomic bomb.


1956: Poets Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath meet at a party in Cambridge.

1962: The US Supreme court disallows race separation on public transport.

1964: On TV (Wednesday)


14.35Story Box-Nature; For Schools

16.45Small Time presents The Musical Box; Children’s Television

17.00Zoo Time

17.25The Terrible Ten


18.08The Weather Forecast

18.15Fair Play

18.45Here and Now

19.00Take a Letter

19.30Coronation Street

20.00They’ve Sold a Million

20.15European Cup Winners’ Cup
Manchester Utd take on Sporting CP of Portugal in the first leg of the quarter final


21.30The Challenge of the New Britain

21.48The Frank Ifield Show

22.33Professional Wrestling

23.13News Headlines


23.28The Adventures of Seahawk

23.53Last Programme




13.30Watch With Mother

14.05Science And Life

17.10The Boss Cat

17.35Two In The Bush


18.10Town And Around

18.35Top Of The Pops
Jimmy Savile and Alan Freeman introduce Billy J Kramer and the Dakotas, The Bachelors, The Ronnettes, The Dave Clark Five, The Merseybeats, Freddie & The Dreamers and Cilla Black


19.35Z Cars



21.30A Challenge To The New Britain


22.55World Figure Skating Championships

23.15The Rounded Mind

23.35Late Night News


1968: Twenty-one female patients die in a fire which sweeps through a wing of Shelton Mental Hospital near Shrewsbury.

1969: Singles chart:

  1. Where Do You Go To (My Lovely) – Peter Starstedt
  2. (If Paradise Iss) Half As Nice – Amen Corner
  3. I’m Gonna Make You Love Me – Diana Ross & The Supremes and The Temptations
  4. Please Don;t Go – Donald Peers
  5. The Way It Used To Be – Engelbert Humperdinck
  6. Dancing In The Street – Martha Reeves and the Vandellas
  7. Blackberry Way – The Move
  8. Albatros – Fleetwood Mac
  9. Wichita Lineman – Glen Campbell
  10. I’ll Pick A Rose For My Rose – Marv Johnson

1971: Two RUC officers are shot and killed by the IRA while on a mobile patrol in the Ardoyne area of Belfast.

1975: Police Constable Stephen Tribble, aged 22, is shot three times at point blank range by a gunman on the run from detectives in Baron’s Court, West London.

1980: Egypt and Israel exchange ambassadors for the first time.

1984: The last of the remaining American forces occupying Beirut pull out of the Lebanese capital.

1987: The Church of England’s General Synod votes by a huge majority in favour of the ordination of women priests.

1991: The Kuwaiti capital is liberated by the Gulf War Allies after 208 days of Iraqi occupation. Coalition planes bomb retreating Iraqi forces, creating the so-called ‘Highway of Death’.

1993: A car bomb explodes underneath the World Trade Centre in New York, killing at least five people.

1995: London finance house Barings collapses after huge losses in Singapore by rogue trader Nick Leeson.

1997: Songwriter Ben Raleigh, composer of Scooby Doo Where Are You? dies in a fire in his kitchen after setting fire to his bathrobe while cooking.

2000: Former British spy David Shayler is sued by the government for breach of confidence and contract over information leaked to a national newspaper.

2009: Death of actress Wendy Richard. On the same day, supermodel Gisele Bundchen marries American football quarterback Tom Brady.

2010: With debts of around £70m Portsmouth become the first Premier League club to enter administration.

2019: India launches air strikes on alleged terrorist camps in Pakistan. On the same day, Vatican treasurer Cardinal George Pell is convicted of child sexual abuse in Melbourne, Australia.

2021: Ariana Grande – Positions

2021: Album chart:

  1. As The Love Continues – Mogwai
  2. Conflict Of Interest – Ghetts
  3. Future Nostalgia – Dua Lipa
  4. The Highlights – The Weeknd
  5. Positions – Ariana Grande
  6. Greatest Hits – Queen
  7. Shoot For The Stars Aim For The Moon – Pop Smoke
  8. Medicine At Midnight – Foo Fighters
  9. Fine Line – Harry Styles
  10. Divinely Uninspired To A Hellish Extent – Lewis Capaldi

BIRTHDAYS: Sandie Shaw (Sandra Goodrich) singer, 75; Michael Bolton (Bolotin) singer-songwriter, 69; Recep Erdoğan, president of Turkey, 68; Jaz (Jeremy) Coleman, vocalist/composer (Killing Joke) 62; Tim Commerford, bassist (Rage Against The Machine) 54; Erykah Badu (Erica Wright), singer-songwriter, 51; Max Martin (Karl Sandberg), producer/songwriter, 51; Ole Gunnar Solksjaer, footballer/manager, 49; Corinne Bailey Rae, singer-songwriter, 43; Emmanuel Adebayor; footballer, 38; Teresa Palmer, actress, 36.