1951: Chief Radio Officer R Thwaite returned in the early hours of the morning to London, where he rejoined his oil tanker after 36 hours of leave. He spent his time ashore at his family’s home in Goddard Avenue. Though still in his teens, he had the great responsibility of being the only radio operator aboard the vessel, which had recently returned from Aruba in the West Indies.

1951: Judge Kirkhouse Jenkins commented on changing mealtime conventions - and the difficulty of securing domestic staff - during a case at Swindon County Court. His experience, he said, was that people of all classes had surrendered the Victorian idea of having a variety of rooms, and tried to lighten the housewife’s duties by eating food, if possible, in the room where it was cooked.

1961: Work was well under way on an £80,000 modernisation scheme at the Milton Road swimming baths. Reconstruction had begun two weeks earlier and was expected to take 15 weeks to complete. The scheme included relining the large and small baths with tiles, re-tiling surfaces around the baths and fitting seats under the balcony.

1961: The new lounge and coffee bar at Chiseldon Youth Club was opened by the Honourable Mrs Sara Morrison, who chaired the Wiltshire Association of Youth Clubs. She was introduced by Mrs E Hughes, who chaired the centre’s management committee, and a junior member, Maureen Simpkins, presented her with a bouquet.

1971: Swindon Church leaders criticised what they described as unsavoury books during a meeting with Swindon MP David Stoddart and his Devizes counterpart, Charles Morrison. The politicians met the Executive Council of the Swindon Council of Churches to discuss the quality of cinema programmes and literature available in the towns. Also on the agenda were unemployment and homelessness.

1971: A 25ft Christmas tree was switched on in The Parade. It had been officially handed over to the Deputy Mayor, Alderman John Pass, by Mr Derek Newman, chairman of the Community Services Committee of the Swindon Loyal Order of Moose. Each Saturday before Christmas, members of the order planned to collect money in The Parade for the aged and needy in the town. The organisation also planned to give £500 in grocery vouchers to the needy.


1421: Henry VI, who inherited the throne at the age of nine months, was born at Windsor.

1774: Austria introduced the first state education system.

1877: Thomas Alva Edison recited Mary Had A Little Lamb into his phonograph - and made the world’s first recording of the human voice.

1888: Will Hay, British music hall and film comedy actor, was born in Stockton-on-Tees.

1897: The world’s first motor cab fleet began operations in London. It went out of business in 1900 - its battery-powered taxis moved at only 8mph.

1921: Irish independence was granted for the 26 southern states which became known as the Irish Free State. Six counties which formed Ulster (Northern Ireland) remained as part of the UK.

1963: Christine Keeler, model involved in the Profumo scandal, was jailed for nine months for perjury.

1969: A free concert given by the Rolling Stones at Altamont, California, ended in tragedy when Hell’s Angels stabbed a man to death.

1991: Durham were admitted to first-class cricket, the first new county side for 70 years.

2012: A powerful typhoon that swept away emergency shelters, a military camp and possibly entire families in the southern Philippines killed around 350 people with nearly 400 missing.

2016: Gogglebox star Scarlett Moffatt emerged victorious from I’m A Celebrity ... Get Me Out Of Here!

BIRTHDAYS JoBeth Williams, actress/director, 69; Peter Willey, former Test umpire, 68; Geoff Hoon, politician, 64; Peter Buck, rock guitarist (REM), 61; Nick Park, animator, 59; Gordon Durie, former footballer, 52; Andrew Flintoff, former cricketer 40.