1st May

Born on this Day 1st May
1769 Duke of Wellington
1824 Alexander William Williamson
1884 Francis Curzon
1887 Alan Gordon Cunningham
1923 Joseph Heller
1916 Glenn Ford
1929 Sonny James
1935 Julian Mitchell
1937 Una Stubbs
1939 Judy Colins
1944 Rita Coolidge
1946 Jerry Weiss
1946 Joanna Lumley
1949 Tim Hodgkinson
1951 Anthony Worrall Thompson
1953 Rob Spendlove
1955 Nick Feldman
1975 Jodhi May
1987 Matt Di Angelo

Died on this Day
1964 Spike Jones


1786 Opening night of the opera The Marriage of Figaro by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in Vienna, Austria.

1955 Country star Hank Snow opened a new American tour. Among his supporting acts was new face Elvis Presley.

1967 Elvis Presley married Priscilla Beaulieu.

1976 Hank Mizell’s 17 year old rockabilly record ‘Jungle Rock’ reached the UK Top 3.

1979 Elton John became the first rock artist to perform a concert in Israel.


1940 The 1940 Summer Olympics are cancelled due to war.

1961 Betting shops were legalized in Britain.

1965 Liverpool, managed by Bill Shankley, beat Leeds United by two goals to one in extra time to win the FA Cup for their first time in their history.

1974 Sir Alf Ramsay was sacked as the manager of the England football team.

1984 Racehorse owner Kenneth Richardson from Hutton, North Humberside, was among three people accused of switching horses in a race swindle. They had entered a stronger 3 year old horse that won a 2 year old’s race.

1991 England beat Turkey by one goal to nil to remain top of their qualifying group for the European football championships.

1992 Lennox Lewis made Frank Bruno an offer of £1 million to meet him in a fight to be staged in Italy.

1994 Three-time Formula One world champion Ayrton Senna is killed in an accident during the San Marino Grand Prix at Imola.

People & Showbiz

1759 Josiah Wedgwood founds the Wedgwood pottery company in Great Britain.

1851 Queen Victoria opens the Great Exhibition in London.

1995 800 people attended a memorial service for Peter Cook at St. John’s Parish Church in Hampstead. Alan Bennett said: ‘The only regret he regularly voiced was that he saved David Frost from drowning.’

General Events

1707 The Act of Union joins the Kingdom of England and Kingdom of Scotland to form the Kingdom of Great Britain.

1840 The Penny Black, the first official adhesive postage stamp, is issued in the United Kingdom.

1931 The Empire State Building in New York was completed. With 102 floors, it rose 1250 feet.

1978 The May Day holiday was celebrated for the first time in Britain.

1989 The Low Pay Unit claimed that almost half the adult employees in Britain earned wages below the European recommended threshold.

1992 Rodney King, the black motorist beated by 4 white police officers, appealed for an end to the violence in Los Angeles.

1995 As spring was giving way to thoughts of summer, the Ministry of Agriculture was trying to find a way of controlling an insect, the large narcissus fly, that attacks daffodils. Up to a quarter of the crop in the bulb growing areas of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly had been destroyed.

1997 Terry Burrows from Essex made a world record when he washed three 45 inch windows in 18.46 seconds.

1997 Tony Blair’s new Labour win the General Election, giving the Conservative’s their biggest defeat for over 150 years.

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