On this day: Band Aid record song | Branson balloon attempt scrapped

On this day in 1989: Richard Branson's attempt to balloon across the Pacific was scrapped 30 minutes before launch after damage was discovered in the balloon. Picture: TSPL

On this day in 1989: Richard Branson's attempt to balloon across the Pacific was scrapped 30 minutes before launch after damage was discovered in the balloon. Picture: TSPL

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Events, birthdays and anniversaries from 25 November

2348BC: Some biblical scholars claim this as the day the Flood began.

1681: Commission from Charles II to Sir Thomas Dalyell of the Binns to form a regiment of horse, the Royal Regiment of Scots Dragoons, later the Royal Scots Greys, originally for the suppression of the Covenanters.

1758: British forces captured Senegal.

1823: The first pleasure pier, The Chain Pier, at Brighton, opened. When it closed, in 1896, £100 shares were worth a little over £13. Later that year, it was destroyed in a storm.

1875: Britain bought 176,602 shares in Suez Canal from Khedive of Egypt.

1882: To beat copyright pirates, Iolanthe, by Gilbert and Sullivan, was premiered in London and the United States, the first show to open simultaneously in both countries.

1915: United States Colonel William Simmons revived the Ku Klux Klan in Atlanta, Georgia.

1920: Government announced plans for a Severn Barrage to generate electricity.

1923: The first transatlantic wireless broadcast to the United States was made.

1932: Actors’ union Equity decided to operate a closed shop from the beginning of 1933.

1941: The battleship HMS Barham was sunk by a U-boat off Sollum, with 868 lives lost.

1967: More than 65 people died in Colombia after eating bread contaminated by an insecticide.

1973: Greece’s president, George Papadopoulos, was ousted after military coup and succeeded by General Phaidon Gizikis.

1975: Surinam, South American republic previously called Dutch Guiana, became fully independent.

1984: Band Aid’s Do They Know It’s Christmas? was recorded by a galaxy of superstars brought together to raise money for the starving in Ethiopia.

1985: Habitat and British Home Stores announced a merger deal worth £1.5 billion.

1989: Entrepreneur Richard Branson’s attempt to balloon across the Pacific was scrapped 30 minutes before launch after damage was discovered in the balloon.

1991: Winston Silcott, one of the “Tottenham Three” jailed for life after the murder of PC Keith Blakelock in 1985, was cleared by the Appeal Court after evidence that police fabricated part of a statement attributed to him.

1995: The Republic of Ireland voted in a referendum to end its constitutional ban on divorce.

BIRTHDAYS

Blythe Duff, actress, 51; John Allan, rugby player, 50; Christina Applegate, actress, 42; Jim Bett, Scottish footballer, 54; Jill Hennessy, actress, 45; Dickie Jeeps, rugby player, chairman, Sports Council 1978-85, 82; Charles Kennedy, MP, leader, Liberal Democrats 1999-2006, 54; Yvonne Kenny, Australian soprano, 63; Bobby Knutt, comedian and actor, 68; Brian Little, English football manager, 60; Paul Murphy, Labour politician, 65; Dougray Scott, Glenrothes-born actor, 48; Percy Sledge, R&B and soul singer, 73.

ANNIVERSARIES

Births: 1835 Andrew Carnegie, Dunfermline-born United States industrialist and philanthropist; 1914 Joe Dimaggio, American baseball legend; 1934 Sir John Drummond, director, Edinburgh International Festival 1978-83; 1938 Shelagh Delaney, playwright.

Deaths: 1937 Lilian Baylis, Old Vic founder; 1957 Sir Ernest Oppenheimer, diamond mining magnate and philanthropist; 2005 George Best, footballer; 2012 Dinah Sheridan, actress.

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