- It happened today – this day in history – October 17 - 17/10/2021
- It happened today – this day in history – October 16 - 16/10/2021
- Tributes flood in after death of Sir David Amess MP - 15/10/2021
301: San Marino, one of the smallest nations in the world and the world’s oldest republic still in existence, is founded by Saint Marinus.
1189: Richard I is crowned in Westminster.
1651: Oliver Cromwell destroys English royalists at the Battle of Worcester.
1658: Richard Cromwell succeeds his father as Lord Protector of the Commonwealth on the death of Oliver Cromwell aged 59.
1725: Britain, France, Hannover and Prussia sign the Covenant of Hannover.
1752: People riot thinking the government stole 11 days of their lives as Britain adopts the Gregorian calendar.
1777: The flag of the United States is flown in battle for the first time at Cooch’s Bridge, Delaware, a skirmish during the American Revolutionary War.
1783: The Treaty of Paris is signed to end the American Revolutionary War between Britain and the USA.
1878: British passenger paddle steamer Princess Alice sinks in a collision on the River Thames with the collier Bywell Castle; 645 die.
1881: Anton Bruckner completes his 6th Symphony.
1900: Britain annexes the Boer Republic of South Africa.
1914: French troops vacate Rheims.
1916: French counter-attacks on German flanks push their frontline further back at the Battle of Verdun.
1917: The first night bombing of London by German aircraft. On the same day, German troops overrun Riga, Latvia.
1918: Allies force Germans back across the Hindenburg Line.
1924: Civil war breaks out in China.
1935: Malcolm Campbell powers Bluebird to 301.129mph at Bonneville Salt Flats, Utah. The first time a car has exceeded 300mph.
1939: Britain and France declare war on Germany. On the same day, British socialite Unity Mitford, part of Hitler’s inner social circle, attempts suicide. The bullet lodges in her brain and takes nine years to kill her.
1940: The US gives Britain 50 destroyers in exchange for Newfoundland base lease.
1943: The Italian government capitulates as Allied troops invade the mainland. The news is not released for another five days.
1944: French troops liberate Lyon. On the same day, at British tank division frees Brussels.
1950: Giuseppe “Nino” Farina wins the inaugural Formula 1 World Drivers Championship in an Alfa Romeo.
1954: The National Trust purchases Fair Isle in northern Scotland famous for its bird sanctuary and knitted sweaters.
1956: Tanks are deployed against racist demonstrators in Clinton, Tennessee.
1962: Death of poet E. E. Cummings aged 67.
1964: US attorney general Robert Kennedy resigns.
- Have I The Right – The Honeycombs
- You Really Got Me – The Kinks
- I Won’t Forget You – Jim Reeves
- Do Wah Diddy Diddy – Manfred Mann
- The Crying Game – Dave Berry
- A Hard Day’s Night – The Beatles
- It’s For You – Cilla Black
- I Wouldn;t Trade You For The World – The Bachelors
- I Get Around – The Beach Boys
- It’s All Over Now – The Rolling Stones
1965: A Rolling Stones gig in Dublin ends in a riot after 30 fans jump onto the stage.
1967: Sweden switches to driving on the right-hand side of road, causing traffic chaos.
- Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band – The Beatles
- The Sound Of Music – Original Soundtrack
- Headquarters – The Monkees
- Best Of The Beach Boys – The Beach Boys
- Are You Experienced – The Jimi Hendrix Experience
- Mamas And Papas Deliver – The Mamas And Papas
- Dr Zhivago – Original Soundtrack
- The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn – Pink Floyd
- Live At The Talk Of The Town – Tom Jones
- Fiddler On The Roof – Original London Cast
1968: After a two week absence, Ringo Starr is persuaded to rejoin The Beatles. Upon his return to the studio, he finds his drum kit covered with flowers to welcome him back.
1970: Al Wilson, guitarist and songwriter with Canned Heat is found dead aged 27 in bandmate Bob Hite’s garden in Topanga Canyon, Los Angeles. On the same day, Arthur Brown is arrested at the Palermo Pop ’70 Festival in Italy and placed in solitary confinement for four days, after he sets fire to his helmet during his hit Fire, and strips naked on stage.
1971: Qatar regains complete independence from Britain. On the same day, a baby girl and a UDR soldier are killed in separate shooting incidents in Northern Ireland.
1972: American swimmer Mark Spitz wins the 100m gold medal in world record 51.22 at the Munich Olympics. Lasse Virén of Finland wins the 10,000m in a world record 27:38.35 and Britain’s Mary Peters wins the pentathlon.
1976: The last protesting imates at Hull’s top-security prison finally surrender after 67 hours on the rampage. On the same day, Viking 2 soft lands on Mars.
1977: Studio engineer Keith Harwood is killed in a car crash shortly after leavingt a recording session with The Rolling Stones.
1984: One million people are made homeless and 4,353 die as a massive typhoon hits the southern Philippines.
1991: Film director Frank Capra dies aged 94.
1994: Death of football legend Billy Wright aged 70.
1998: A Swissair plane flying from New York to Geneva crashes in the sea off the coast of Nova Scotia, killing all 229 people on board.
2003: Libertines singer Pete Doherty is sentenced to six months in prison after being found guilty of burglary and drug possession charges. His sentence is reduced to two months on appeal.
2004: A three-day siege in the Russian town of Beslan ends with the deaths of 335 people, half of them children, as Chechnyan rebels fire at the backs of fleeing school pupils and a suicide bomber blows herself up in the middle of the crowded gym where more hostages were being held. On the same day, Sir Cliff Richard stunned the music industry by ending his contract with EMI records after 46 years and signing with Eminem’s label Universal Music.
2005: Fats Domino is rescued from New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina caused widespread flooding.
2010: Cellist Mike Edwards a former member of ELO, is killed in a freak accident when a giant bale of hay tumbles down a hill in Devon and crashes into his van. On the same day, Cyril Smith, Liberal Member of Parliament and alleged serial sex offender, dies aged 82. Also, singer Cheryl Cole divorces soccer player Ashley Cole due to his unreasonable behaviour.
2017: Walter Becker, co-founder and guitarist for Steely Dan dies aged 67.
2019: Songwriter LaShawn Daniels, who co-wrote such hits as Destiny’s Child’s ‘Say My Name’ and Lady Gaga’s ‘Telephone’ dies in a car crash in South Carolina aged 41.
BIRTHDAYS: Pauline Collins, actress, 81; Al Jardine, guitarist/singer (The Beach Boys) 79; Valerie Perrine, actress, 78; Eric Bell, guitarist (Thin Lizzy) 74; Steve Jones, guitarist (The Sex Pistols), 66; Suzanne Freitag, vocalist (Propaganda) 64; Rachel Johnson, journalist, 56; Derek Redmond, athlete, 56; Charlie Sheen (Carlos Estevez), actor, 56; Gareth Southgate, England football manager, 51; Fearne Cotton, broadcaster, 40; Gareth Hedlund, actor, 37; Scott Carson, goalkeeper, 36; Chris Fountain, actor, 34; Jake Quickenden, Reality TV personality, 33.