17th February

Born on this day 17th February
1914 Arthur Kennedy
1919 Kathleen Freeman
1934 Sir Alan Bates
1910 Marc Lawrence
1929 Patricia Routledge
1930 Baroness Ruth Rendell
1934 Barry Humphries
1941 Gene Pitney
1954 Renne Russo
1971 Jeremy Edwards
1989 Rebecca Adlington
1991 Bonnie Wright

Died on this day
1980 Graham Sutherland
1982 Thelonius Monk


1956 Bill Haley and The Comets were offered a record-breaking sum for a proposed 1957 British tour.

1962 Gene Chandler reached the No.1 position in the US singles chart with ‘Duke of Earl’.

1968 Manfred Mann reached the top of the UK chart with ‘The Mighty Quinn’.

1974 The Who appeared in Poitiers.

1986 Kate Bush’s single ‘Hounds of Love/The Handsome Cabin Boy’ was released in the UK.

1990 In the US singles chart, Roxette overtook Abba as Scandinavia’s most successful act, as they scored their third top 5 hit.


1968 Jean-Claude Killy from France, one of the world’s greatest alpine skiers, won three gold medals at the Winter Olympics in Grenoble.

People & Showbiz

1993 The Iranian parliament voted 2-1 in favour of keeping the death sentence on Salman Rushdie.

1994 New York surgeon John Morland announced that Elizabeth Taylor was to have a hip replacement operation.

General Events

1863 The International Red Cross was formed in Geneva.

1958 During a meeting at Westminster’s Central Hall, The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, the group calling for the abolition of nuclear weapons in Britain, was formed, led by a committee including Labour MP Micheal Foot, philosopher Bertrand Russell and author J.B Priestley.

1962 James Hanratty was sentenced to death for the murder of 36 year old Michael Gregston in a lay-by at Deadman’s Hill near Bedford after a trial lasting 21 days, the longest murder trial in British legal history.

1972 British parliament passed the Bill to join the European Common Market.

1978 Inflation in the UK fell to 9.9 %, the first time in five years that it had been in single figures.

1991 It was reported that in the Gulf crisis, more than 78,000 missions had been flown since the 17th January, including 150 against Scud missile launcher sites.

1991 2 American soldiers were killed and 6 wounded when they were fired on mistakenly by a US Apache helicopter in the Gulf.

2003 The London Congestion Charge scheme begins.

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