On this day: Bank of Scotland established | Cutty Sark

In 1964 Sir Donald Campbell set a land speed record of more than 400mph in Bluebird on salt flats in Australia. Picture: Getty
In 1964 Sir Donald Campbell set a land speed record of more than 400mph in Bluebird on salt flats in Australia. Picture: Getty
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Events, birthdays and anniversaries for 17 July


1453: The Hundred Years’ War ended after the defeat of the English at Castillon.

1695: Bank of Scotland was established.

1790: The first sewing machine was patented by cabinet-maker Thomas Smith in London which had most of the technical features of machines patented later by Elias Howe and Isaac Singer.

1832: Scottish Reform Bill became law.

1841: The first issue of the magazine Punch was published in London.

1917: The Royal Family changed its name from the House of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha to the House of Windsor during the First World War.

1936: Spanish Civil War started as General Francisco Franco led army forces in revolt against Spain’s government.

1945: The Potsdam Conference involving Allied leaders Harry S Truman, Josef Stalin and Winston Churchill began.

1955: Walt Disney’s Disneyland was opened in California.

1962: New altitude record for winged aircraft was established by US Major RM White, who piloted an X-15 rocket to a height of 314,750ft (more than 59 miles).

1964: Donald Campbell attained a world speed record of more than 403mph – by a wheel-driven car, Bluebird – on the salt flats at Lake Eyre in South Australia.

1967: First anti-litter campaign begun by the new Keep Britain Tidy group.

1969: Oh Calcutta!, the sex revue devised by Kenneth Tynan, opened in New York.

1973: Afghanistan was proclaimed republic after palace coup which ended 40-year rule of King Mohammed Zahir Shah.

1976: The Queen opened the Montreal Olympic Games.

1987: France broke diplomatic relations with Iran.

1995: 150,000 people watched a fireworks display at Leith Docks, Edinburgh, to celebrate the Cutty Sark Tall Ships Race. The next day thousands more crowded vantage points as the 90 ships left the Forth under sail for Germany.

1998: The remains of Tsar Nicholas II and his family were buried in St Petersburg.

2007: TAM Airlines Flight 3054 crashed upon landing during rain in São Paulo.

2009: Jakarta double bombings at the JW Marriott and Ritz-Carlton Hotels killed nine people.


Wayne Sleep OBE, British dancer, actor and choreographer, 65; Donald Sutherland, Canadian actor, 78; Alun Armstrong, British actor, 67; Tim Brooke-Taylor OBE, British actor, 73; Darren Day, British actor and singer, 45; Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, 66; Diahann Carroll, American actress, 78; Chico Freeman, American jazz saxophonist, 64; Ray Galton OBE, British scriptwriter (Hancock’s Half Hour), 83; Natasha Hamilton, singer (Atomic Kitten), 31; David Hasselhoff, actor, 61; Konnie Huq, television presenter, 38; Lord Patten, MP 1979-92, governor of Hong Kong 1992-7, 68; Peter Sissons, television presenter, 71.


Births: 1674 Isaac Watts, hymn-writer and churchman; 1763 John Jacob Astor, fur trader and millionaire; 1889 Erle Stanley Gardner, author who created Perry Mason; 1899 James Cagney, actor; 1909 Sir Hardy Amies, couturier; 1940 Joe Baker, footballer.

Deaths: 1537 Janet Douglas, Lady Glamis (burnt at the stake in Edinburgh); 1762: Peter III, Tsar of Russia (assassinated); 1790 Adam Smith, Kirkcaldy-born economist; 2009 Gordon Waller, Scottish singer/songwriter.