On this day: Agreement to return Hong Kong to Chinese rule

On this day in 1984 Britain and China initiated an agreement to return Hong Kong to Chinese rule in 1997. Picture: Getty
On this day in 1984 Britain and China initiated an agreement to return Hong Kong to Chinese rule in 1997. Picture: Getty
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Events, birthdays and anniversaries for 26 September

1580: Francis Drake and crew arrived back in Plymouth in the 100-tonne Golden Hind to become the first Englishmen to circumnavigate the world.

1629: Sweden and Denmark signed the peace of Altmark.

1687: The Parthenon was destroyed when the Venetians bombarded Athens.

1733: France, Spain and Sardinia signed an anti-German covenant.

1815: Anti-liberal Holy Alliance was formed among Austria, Russia and Prussia to maintain Vienna Settlement.

1831: British Association for the Advancement of Science set up.

1860: First Open golf championship was held at Prestwick. The Belt was won by Willie Park of Musselburgh.

1887: The first gramophone, invented by Emile Berliner, was patented.

1892: John Philip Sousa’s band made its first public appearance in New Jersey.

1904: Earl Grey was named the British governor-general of Canada.

1907: New Zealand became self-governing dominion within British Commonwealth.

1918: Allies launched offensive that eventually broke Germany’s Hindenburg Line.

1934: The Cunard liner Queen Mary was launched from John Brown’s yard at Clydebank.

1937: Arabs murdered British district commissioner for Galilee.

1938: Adolf Hitler issued an ultimatum to the government of Cechoslovakia damanding possession of Sudetenland.

1941: British Eighth Army formed.

1950: United Nations forces recaptured Seoul, capital of South Korea.

1953: Sugar rationing ended in Britain.

1957: Bernstein & Sondheim’s musical West Side Story premiered at the Winter Garden Theatre in New York.

1968: Hawaii Five-O was broadcast for the first time on CBS-TV.

1969: The Beatles released their Abbey Road album.

1970: A groups of Protestant youths attacked the Catholic Unity Flats during rioting in the Protestant Shankill Road area of Belfast.

1970: Jordan’s King Hussein named new government to placate critics who accused him of plotting to liquidate Palestinian guerrillas in his country.

1976: Leaders of five black African nations declined to accept plan presented by Rhodesia’s prime minister, Ian Smith, to achieve black majority rule.

1984: Britain and China initialled agreement to return Hong Kong to Chinese rule in 1997.

1989: Soviet foreign minister Eduard Shevardnadze told the United Nations General Assembly that Moscow would join the United States in reducing or destroying all chemical weapons.

2000: The MS Express Samina sank off Paros in the Aegean sea, killing 80 passengers.

2002: The overcrowded Senegalese ferry MV Joola capsized off the coast of Gambia killing more than 1,000.

2008: German commandos arrested two men on a KLM plane at Cologne airport. They were suspected of planning attacks and had intended to carry out “holy war”.

2009: Typhoon Ketsana hit the Philippines, China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Thailand, causing 700 fatalities.


Bryan Ferry CBE, singer, 70; Olivia Newton-John OBE, actress and singer, 67; Neil Coles MBE, golfer, 81; Linda Hamilton, actress, 59; Will Self, author and broadcaster, 54; Ricky Tomlinson, actor, 76; Serena Williams, tennis champion, 34; Kieran Gibbs, footballer, 26; Anne Robinson, TV presenter and journalist, 71; Jon Richardson, comedian, 33; Michael Ballack, footballer, 39; Talulah Riley, actress, 30; Winnie Mandela, anti-apartheid activist and politician, 79; Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot, marathon runner, 37; Stuart Tosh, Aberdeen-born drummer, songwriter and vocalist, 64; Dick Roth, Olympic swimming champion, 68.


Births: 1181 Saint Francis of Assisi; 1887 Sir Barnes Wallis, bouncing bomb designer; 1888 TS Eliot, poet; 1897 Pope Paul VI; 1898 George Gershwin, US composer; 1907 Anthony Blunt, art historian and Soviet spy; 1926 Julie London, singer and actress; 1927 Patrick O’Neal, actor; 1932 Donna Douglas, actress; 1947 Lynn Anderson, country music singer.

Deaths: 1620 Taichang, emperor of China; 1820 Daniel Boone, frontiersman; 1902 Levi Strauss, businessman and first manufacturer of blue jeans; 1915 James Kier Hardie, founder of Scottish Labour Party; 1942 Wilson Carlile, founder of Church Army; 1945 Bela Bartok, composer; 1947 Hugh Lofting, Dr Dolittle creator; 2003 Robert Palmer, singer-songwriter; 2006 Byron Nelson, multi-major winning golfer; 2006 Iva Toguri D’Aquino (“Tokyo Rose”), wartime radio propagandist; 2008 Paul Newman, actor.