1952: Five-year-old Swindon girl Sandra Tanner scored a clutch of successes at semi-finals of the All England Sunshine Dancing Competitions in London. She won a silver medal together with first prize in the six years and under tap section, sixth in the modern musical section and the right to compete in the finals, which were set for July 11.

1952: A girl aged 16 was in need of care and protection after being found in a Swindon park with an American soldier, the town’s magistrates’ court heard. An NSPCC inspector revealed that the teenager was so drunk when found that she was unable to give her name and address. She said she and a friend met the soldier after seeing a film at a cinema, and that he had bought a bottle of port.

1962: Bus passengers saw a man fall to his death from a Paddington to Swindon express train near Acorn Bridge on the Swindon to Shrivenham Road. The train was described as crowded and travelling at between 60 and 70mph. The body was recovered by an ambulance crew as police officers launched an inquiry. A witness described the dead man as between 40 and 50 years old and wearing a grey suit.

1962: Haydon Wick Parish Council decided to host a special discussion following claims by some locals that their village was the untidiest in Wiltshire. Members of the parish council criticised the Adver for reporting villagers’ complaints about untrimmed verges, broken bottles, unmended fences, a blind bend, a ruined playground and an overloaded sewer, although none suggested the newspaper had misquoted anybody.

1973: Mr G Doris, Assistant Postmaster General of Guyana, was in the midst of a two-week visit to Swindon, part of a six-month fact-finding mission to Britain during which he studied the postal system and visited head post offices across the country. Speaking at Swindon’s, he said his aim was to discover which systems might be useful in Guyana.

1973: Swindon caver Tim Stratford, 28, vowed to press on with a planned Swindon Speleological Society visit to the Andes in 1974. His plan was to explore the massive cave systems beneath the South American mountain range, and he hoped for sponsorship from local and national industry.


1776: The American Declaration of Independence was adopted in Philadelphia. It was not fully written or signed until August.

1829: The first regular scheduled bus service was introduced in London. It was horse-drawn and ran between Marylebone Road and Bank.

1840: The Cunard Line began its first Atlantic crossing when the paddle steamer Britannia sailed from Liverpool to Halifax. The voyage took just over 14 days.

1845: Thomas John Barnardo, Dublin-born philanthropist, was born. In 1867 he started homes for some of London’s many destitute children. They became known as Dr Barnardo’s Homes though he never qualified as a medical doctor.

1934: Marie Curie, Nobel Prize-winning scientist who discovered radium, fell foul of her own discovery when she died as a result of over-exposure to radioactivity.

1976: Israeli commandos ended the Entebbe hostage crisis in a daring raid in which seven Palestinian terrorists were killed. Three of the 98 hostages - mainly Israeli - also died.


Gina Lollobrigida, actress, 90; Bill Withers, singer-songwriter, 80; Prince Michael of Kent, 76; Jenny Seagrove, actress, 61; Neil Morrissey, actor, 56; Henri Leconte, former tennis player, 55; Jo Whiley, DJ, 53;