1952: Mrs TJ Humphries, who had chaired the Swindon (New Town) branch of the British Legion Women’s Section for 30 years, was presented with a certificate of merit for her service by the mayor, Alderman AE Long. He said: ‘Her long service is a true indication that her heart is in the movement.’ Mrs Humphries was also presented with a bouquet as a personal tribute from fellow members of the branch.

1952: A talk about Christianity in music was given at Swindon College by Mr Michael Cannon of Keble College, Oxford, as part of an ongoing series of Christian-themed events. The talk traced the history of music from its earliest known examples to the modern day, concentrating on the breadth of pieces inspired by religious devotion.

1962: Swindon branch members of the Incorporated Association of Organists visited the Watford Works of organ maker Burge Electronics. They were met by two of the firm’s directors, Mr Dunster and Mr Burge, who explained the art of making electronic organs. Recitals on various completed models were given by the firm’s Mr Jimmy Swift, and later the visitors were able to try instruments our for themselves.

1962: Model-maker Mr Frank Dobedoe from Penhill completed a working miniature version of steam locomotive Frankton Grange. For three-and-a-half years he painstakingly worked sheet metal according to a scaled-down version of the machine, and according to his calculations the model was capable of hauling 230 pounds and travelling at five miles per hour.

1972: Townswomen’s Guild branches from throughout Swindon got together for their second annual Festival of Drama and Song at Drove School. Three branches - Goddard, Ridgway and Central - presented one-act plays, while members of the Westlecot branch offered a dramatic recital of a scene from George Bernard Shaw play St Joan, which was delivered by Mollie Spencer, and solo songs from Marie King.

1972: Four airmen from RAF Locking, Weston-super-Mare, were treated for cuts and bruises at Princess Margaret Hospital following an accident at the Leigh Delamere service station on the M4. The car had just turned into the service station from the eastbound carriageway when it struck a lamp standard.


1751: Playwright Richard Brinsley Sheridan (The Rivals, The School For Scandal) was born in Dublin.

1925: In his workshop in London, John Logie Baird achieved the first television pictures using a dummy’s head.

1938: Orson Welles’s radio adaptation of HG Wells’s War Of The Worlds caused panic in the US by convincing many listeners that Martians had really landed.

1990: Crews at work on the Channel Tunnel met for the first time when French workers drilled a pilot hole through to the British side of a service tunnel.

1991: The Queen opened the Queen Elizabeth Bridge over the Thames at Dartford.


Bob Wilson, broadcaster and former footballer, 77; Henry Winkler, actor, 73; Harry Hamlin, actor, 67; Juliet Stevenson, actress, 62; Diego Maradona, former footballer, 58; Courtney Walsh, former cricketer, 56; Vanessa White, singer (The Saturdays), 29.