The Italian Affair
1566 David Rizzio, Italian courtier and private secretary to Mary, Queen of Scots, was murdered in the Palace of Holyroodhouse, Edinburgh. Mary’s husband, Lord Darnley, is said to have been jealous of their friendship, because of rumours that he had made Mary pregnant, and he joined in a conspiracy of Protestant nobles to murder him. The murder led to the downfall of Darnley who was himself murdered, apparently by strangulation, less than a year later.
The Storm of 14 Ships
1891 Four days of storms began off England’s south coast, sinking 14 ships.
The Road to Wigan Pier
1937 The Road To Wigan Pier, George Orwell’s book depicting life during ‘The Depression’ in the north of England, was published. Wigan pier was simply a place for loading coal onto canal boats on the Leeds – Liverpool canal.
1925 The start of Pink’s War, an air to ground bombardment carried out by the Royal Air Force, under the command of Wing Commander Richard Charles Montagu Pink, against the tribesmen in north west Pakistan. It was the first Royal Air Force operation conducted independently of the British Army and Royal Navy.
The Deadly Game
1946 33 fans were killed and hundreds injured when a barrier collapsed at the Bolton Wanderers’ football ground. The dead and injured were taken from the stand, with those who had perished lain along the touchline and covered in coats. Incredibly, a little under half an hour after leaving the pitch, the game was restarted, with a new sawdust lined touchline separating the players from the bodies. It was the deadliest football stadium-related disaster in British history until the Ibrox Park disaster in 1971.
The Tragedy of Timothy Evans
1950 Timothy Evans was hanged for the murder of his wife. Three years later John Christie admitted killing her and several other women.
1956 British authorities deported Archbishop Makarios from Cyprus in an attempt to restore law and order to the island. He was accused of supporting terrorists.
M5 Motorway Horror
1981 John Lambe who became known as the M5 Rapist was sentenced to life imprisonment. He was given a life sentence on each of 12 counts of rape and a six year sentence (concurrent) on four charges of attempted rape.
The Story of Northern Ireland
1973 Northern Ireland voted in favour (90:1) of staying in the United Kingdom.
1994 IRA terrorists launched a mortar attack on Heathrow Airport. All the missiles failed to explode.
1995 The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh visited Northern Ireland, their first visit since the IRA and Loyalist ceasefires of 1994.