On this day: First episode of Fawlty Towers broadcast

On this day in 1975, the first episode of Fawlty Towers was broadcast on the BBC. It only ran for 12 episodes. Picture: ContributedOn this day in 1975, the first episode of Fawlty Towers was broadcast on the BBC. It only ran for 12 episodes. Picture: Contributed
On this day in 1975, the first episode of Fawlty Towers was broadcast on the BBC. It only ran for 12 episodes. Picture: Contributed
EVENTS, birthdays and anniversaries

1840: Auckland, New Zealand, was founded.

1854: The Great North of Scotland Railway opened, from Aberdeen to Huntly.

1868: The Spanish revolution began.

1879: The Blackpool Illuminations were switched on for the first time.

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1893: New Zealand became the first nation to grant female citizens the right to vote.

1898: British force under Horatio Kitchener reached Fashoda in the Sudan.

1934: Bruno Richard Hauptmann was arrested in New York and charged with kidnapping baby of American aviation pioneer Charles Lindbergh.

1941: The Germans took Kiev in Soviet Union.

1945: William Joyce, known as “Lord Haw-Haw” for his wartime broadcasts for the Nazis, was sentenced to be hanged at the Old Bailey.

1946: The Council of Europe was founded following a speech by Winston Churchill at the University of Zurich.

1952: The US barred Charlie Chaplin from re-entering the country after a trip to England.

1955: Juan Peron, Argentine presidential dictator from 1946, resigned and went into exile after military revolt.

1958: Nasa was founded to co-ordinate non-military space flight and research.

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1960: Chubby Checker’s The Twist – a cover of an original Hank Ballard song – entered the American charts and launched a dance craze.

1972: An Israeli diplomat was killed and another injured when letter bomb exploded at Israeli embassy in London.

1975: First of 12 episodes of BBC hotel comedy Fawlty Towers was broadcast.

1978: Egypt’s cabinet approved unanimously president Anwar Sadat’s Camp David agreement to sign peace treaty with Israel within three months.

1981: Black Friday on the Stock Exchange, the worst day for share prices for five years.

1983: St Kitts and Nevis gained independence.

1985: Two earthquakes hit Mexico City, killing more than 500.

1986: Two passengers trains crashed in Staffordshire, killing two people and injuring nearly 100 others.

1991: Ötzi the Iceman was discovered by German tourists.

1993: Nigel Mansell became only the third driver to claim both a Formula 1 and an IndyCar title by winning the grand prix in Nazareth, Pennsylvania.

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1997: An Intercity train ploughed into a freight train in Southall, west London, killing six people and injuring more than 150.

2001: President George W Bush ordered 100 combat aircraft to the Persian Gulf in preparation for a possible strike against Afghanistan and the terrorist leader Osama bin Laden.

2006: The Thai military staged a coup in Bangkok. The Constitution was revoked and martial law declared.

2010: Baroness Thatcher joined politicians and royalty to mark the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain.

2010: The King’s Speech, directed by Tom Hooper, won the People’s Choice Award at the Toronto International Film Festival.

2011: A 6.9 magnitude earthquake hit north-eastern India, causing damage and injuries in India, Nepal and Tibet.

2012: Nine people were killed and 20 wounded by a car bombing in Peshawar, Afghanistan.


Kate Adie OBE, television reporter, 70; Jarvis Cocker, singer (Pulp), 52; Captain Jim Fox MBE, OBE, modern pentathlete, 74; Jeremy Irons, actor, 67; David McCallum, Scottish actor, 82; Patrick Marber, playwright, 51; Margaret of Mar, 31st Countess of Mar and 24th Lady Garioch, politician, farmer and cheesemaker, 75; Charles Henry Gordon-Lennox, 10th Duke of Richmond, 10th Duke of Lennox, Hereditary Constable of Inverness Castle, 86; Dame Zandra Rhodes DBE, dress designer, 75; Nile Rodgers, music producer, 63; Twiggy (born Lesley Hornby), model and actress, 66; Lol Creme, rock musician, 68.


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Births: 1806 William Dyce, Aberdeen-born artist; 1839 George Cadbury, Quaker, chocolate manufacturer and social reformer; 1869 Ben Turpin, comic actor of silent movies; 1911 Sir William Golding, author and Nobel laureate; 1934 Brian Epstein, manager of the Beatles; 1867 Arthur Rackham, illustrator; 1910 Arthur Mullard, comedy actor; 1930 Derek Nimmo, actor; 1932 Stefanie Zweig, author.

Deaths: 1812 Meyer Rothschild, banker; 1815 John Singleton Copley, painter; 1881 James Garfield, 20th American president; 1905 Doctor Thomas Barnardo, social reformer and founder of homes for destitute children; 1988 Roy Kinnear, actor and comedian.