On this day: Glasgow’s Grosvenor Hotel destroyed by blaze

On this day in 1978, Glasgow's Grosvenor Hotel was destroyed in a blaze which could not be controlled by 60 servicemen. PIcture: TSPL
On this day in 1978, Glasgow's Grosvenor Hotel was destroyed in a blaze which could not be controlled by 60 servicemen. PIcture: TSPL
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EVENTS, birthdays, anniversaries

1451: Glasgow University was founded by a bull of Pope Nicholas V, at the suit of King James II and Bishop William Turnbull.

1558: Calais, the last English possession on the mainland of France, captured by the French.

1598: Boris Godunov seized Russian throne on death of Feodore I.

1601: Robert, Earl of Essex, led a revolt against Queen Elizabeth.

1610: Galileo discovered the four satellites of Jupiter and named them Io, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto.

1618: Francis Bacon became Lord Chancellor of England.

1714: A “contrivance” called a typewriter was patented by Henry Mill, but it was a century before it caught on.

1785: Jean Pierre Blanchard and JohnJeffried made the first crossing of the English Channel by balloon.

1789: The first national American elections elected George Washington as president.

1799: Prime minister William Pitt introduced income tax to fund the war against Napoleon.

1914: The first boat, the Alexandre La Valley, passed through the newly-constructed Panama Canal.

1939: Physicist Marguerite Perey discovered Francium, the last naturally occurring element to be found.

1946: Cambodia became an autonomous state within the French union.

1953: President Harry S Truman announced that US had developed hydrogen bomb.

1968: Government of Lebanon resigned after Israeli commando raid at Beirut airport.

1972: India resisted American pressure and granted full diplomatic recognition to China.

1973: The British Darts Organisation was formed in London.

1975: Led Zeppelin fans rioted before a concert in Boston, Massachusetts, causing $30,000 in damage.

1978: Glasgow’s 100-bedroom Grosvenor Hotel was destroyed in six-hour blaze which could not be controlled by 60 servicemen standing in for firemen who were in the ninth week of strike. Earlier the same day, three members of a family died in a house fire at Linwood, Renfrewshire.

1979: Vietnamese forces captures Phnom Penh from the Khmer Rouge.

1983: President Ronald Reagan ended the US embargo on Guatemala.

1991: Russian Christians celebrated Orthodox Christmas as a public holiday for the first time in 73 years.

1998: Former White House intern Monica Lewinski signed an affadavit denying that she had an affair with president Bill Clinton.

1999: The Senate trial in the impeachment of US president Bill Clinton began.

2006: Charles Kennedy resigned as leader of the Liberal Democrats two days after admitting to having a drink problem.

2008: After spending nearly 21 years on death row in Ohio, Scot Kenny Richey, 43, who won a long legal battle to have his murder conviction overturned, was set free. He had been sentenced to death on 1987, for killing his former girlfriend’s two-year-old child.

2015: Twelve people were killed in a terrorist attack on the offices of the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo in Paris.


Births: 1502 Pope Gregory XIII, who introduced the Gregorian calendar; 1827 Sir Sandford Fleming, Kirkcaldy-born railway engineer and scientist; 1896 Arnold Ridley OBE, dramatist and actor (Dad’s Army); 1925 Gerald Durrell, zoologist and writer; 1943 Sir Richard Armstrong CBE, British conductor.

Deaths: 1536 Catherine of Aragon, first wife of Henry VIII; 1935 Sir James Alfred Ewing, Scottish phusicist and engineer; 1943 Nikola Tesla, electrical engineer; 1989 Emperor Hirohito of Japan; 1990 Ian Charleson, actor; 1995 Larry Grayson, comedian and TV presenter; 2007 Magnus Magnusson, quizmaster of BBC’s Mastermind 1972-97; 2015 Rod Taylor, actor.