February 9

1953: During an interval in a skittles match between members of the General Post Office and Crossways Club Monarchs, at the Crossways Club, a cigarette lighter and tobacco pouch were presented to Mr W J Brown, to mark his recent retirement from Swindon Post Office. The presentation was made by M H Hillier.

1953: The pedigree St Bernard dog, St Bernardette Tessa, belonging to Mrs S E Brown of Croft Road, Swindon, with a collecting box strapped to her back, collected £75 in aid of the flood fund. Tessa collected £27 on her first afternoon.

1963: The annual dance and social for staff of the Nicholson Raincoat Co Ltd, was held at McIlroys Ballroom, Swindon. A feature of the event was the presentation of a gold wrist watch, for 25 years service with the firm, to Mrs E Wilson. Mrs Wilson of Omdurman Street, Swindon, had been a passer, checking finished coats for faults, at the firm's Swindon factory in County Road. Music for the dancing, for the 200 guests, was by the Gordon Talbot Orchestra.

1963: Nearly £400 was received by the Mayor of Swindon, Mrs A E Cockram, on behalf of the National Children's Home, at the festival of queens in the Central Hall, The money was presented to her by more than 70 children (the queens) representing the church and other organisations which supported the appeal. The festival opened with a fanfare from the Swindon British Railways Silver Band, followed by a procession of the queens. Entertainment was then provided by Johnny Morris.

1973: Lechlade Parish Council Chairman, Sam Jenkins, allayed tree lovers fears about the felling of lime trees on the west side of Burford Road. He said that only three trees had been chopped down by the workman, spotted by anxious residents. The trees were in a dangerous condition because of their age so had been chopped. The trees he said would be replanted with new, young lime trees immediately.

1973: A former Swindon railway man, who became a clergyman, has had his first book of poems published. Canon Joseph Hodges' book entitled The Pattern of Splendour, included the poem, Young Bliss, which recalled the cottage he lived in at Rodbourne Cheney calling it spacious, detached and set in rural bliss. Canon Hodges left Swindon when he was 21 after an apprenticeship in the GWR Railway Works.

The World

1540: The first recorded horse racing meeting in Britain was held at the Roodeye Field, Chester.

1855: The "Devil's Footprints" appeared in snowbound South Devon - 100 miles of cloven hoofprints, eight inches apart in a single line and measuring four inches by two.

1865: Mrs Patrick Campbell, actress with an abrasive wit, was born in London.

She created several famous roles, including Eliza Doolittle in Pygmalion

(1914), and had a well-documented relationship with George Bernard Shaw.

1891: Ronald Colman, English actor who became a romantic star in Hollywood, was born in Richmond, Surrey. His films included The Prisoner Of Zenda.

1893: The world's first public striptease took place at the Moulin Rouge in Paris.

1942: Soap rationing began in Britain.

1949: Robert Mitchum was jailed in Los Angeles for smoking marijuana.

1961: The Beatles made their first appearance at the Cavern during a lunchtime session.

1964: Beatlemania gripped America as around 70 million tuned in to see the Fab Four on the Ed Sullivan Show.

1981: Rock 'n' roller Bill Haley died. He spearheaded the 1950s rock revolution

with Rock Around The Clock.

2018: More people are worried about the future of the NHS than the threat of terrorism, research published on this day suggested.


Janet Suzman, actress, 80; Carole King, singer/songwriter, 77; Joe Pesci, actor, 76; Mia Farrow, actress, 74; Gordon Strachan, football manager, 62; Sandy Lyle, golfer, 61; Glenn McGrath, former cricketer, 49; Darren Ferguson, football manager, 47; Tom Hiddleston, actor, 38.