On this day: The Flying Scotsman went into service

On this day in 1923 the Flying Scotsman first went into service. Picture: Getty
On this day in 1923 the Flying Scotsman first went into service. Picture: Getty
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EVENTS, birthdays and anniversaries on February 24.

1525: Spanish army, using muskets for first time in war, routed French and Swiss forces at Pavia, Italy, as 14,000 men died in battle.

1530: Charles V was crowned Holy Roman Emperor and King of Italy by Pope Clement VII at Bologna – the last imperial coronation by a pope.

1582: Pope Gregory XIII announced the introduction of the Gregorian calendar, replacing the Julian calendar. That was acknowledged by Scotland in 1600, and adopted by England in 1752.

1809: A fire destroyed part of Drury Lane Theatre, London.

1824: Governor-general of India declared war on Burmese after British East India Company territory was violated.

1887: A telephone link between Paris and Brussels opened – the first between capitals.

1905: The Simplon Tunnel through the Alps (12.3 miles) was completed.

1917: Zimmerman telegram, a secret message from German foreign minister Zimmerman to Mexican government, asking it to declare war on United States, published in Washington, DC.

1920: Viscountess Astor became the first woman to speak in the House of Commons.

1920: Nazi Party was organised in Germany.

1923: Flying Scotsman express went into service.

1932: Sir Malcolm Campbell world land-speed record of 253.96 mph on Daytona Beach.

1938: Toothbrushes with nylon bristles, the first commercial nylon product, went on sale in New Jersey, United States.

1945: Egypt’s premier Ahmed Pasha was assassinated after announcing Egypt’s declaration of war against Germany.

1945: American troops liberated Philippine capital of Manila from Japanese occupation.

1946: Juan Peron elected president of Argentina.

1964: Henry Cooper beat Brian London to win his second Lonsdale Belt.

1981: Prince Charles, 32, and Lady Diana Spencer, 19, announced their engagement.

1989: Several passengers were sucked out of a plane 22,000 feet over the Pacific when a hole the size of a bus was torn in a Boeing 747 soon after take-off from Honolulu to Auckland.

1990: The United States, the Soviet Union and China announced plans to send 30-man team to sweep Mount Everest clean of rubbish left by four decades of climbers.

1991: In the first parliamentary Soviet elections under a genuine multi-party system, voters in Lithuania rejected Communist rule.

1991: Allies launched three-pronged assault deep into Kuwait and Iraq. At least 10,000 Iraqi troops reported to have surrendered.

1992: Australian prime minister Paul Keating was criticised for insulting the Queen with comments about republicanism.

2000: An independent inquiry was ordered into the cost of the Scottish Parliament building at Holyrood, reported to have risen from £40 million to £220m.

2006: Philippine president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo declared a state of emergency in attempt to subdue a possible military coup.

2008: Fidel Castro retired as the president of Cuba after nearly 50 years.

2011: Final launch of Space Shuttle Discovery (OV-103).


Kristin Davis, actress, 50; Jean Alexander, actress (Coronation

Street’s Hilda Ogden), 89; Brian Close CBE, English cricketer and administrator, 84; Paul Jones, British singer (Manfred Mann and Blues Band) and actor, 73; Denis Law CBE, Scottish footballer and commentator, 75; Michel Legrand, French film music composer, 83; Floyd Mayweather Jr, American boxer, 38; Alain Prost OBE, racing driver, 60; Derek Randall, English cricketer and coach, 64; Walter Smith OBE, ex-Scottish football player and manager, 67; Dennis Waterman, British actor, 67.


Births: 1786 Wilhelm Grimm, German collector of fairy tales; 1852 George Moore, novelist; 1866 Sir Arthur Pearson, founder of Daily Express; 1919 Betty Marsden, actress; 1921 Pat Kirkwood, actress; 1922 Richard Hamilton, British abstract artist; 1929 Lord Caplan, Senator of the College of Justice in Scotland 1989-2000; 1940 Jimmy Ellis, American world heavyweight boxing champion.

Deaths: 1815 Robert Fulton, steamboat pioneer; 1822 Thomas Coutts, banker; 1825 Thomas Bowdler, censor of “naughty bits” in the works of Shakespeare (hence “bowdlerise”); 1975 Nikolai Bulganin, Soviet prime minister (1955-58); 1987 Memphis Slim, musician; 1993 Bobby Moore, footballer; 1999 Derek Nimmo, actor; 2013 Sir Denis Forman, chairman, Scottish Film Production Fund 1990-93; 2014 Harold Ramis, American actor, director and writer.