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This Day in History - 13th September


1759 British troops, under the command of General Wolfe, secured Canada for the British Empire after defeating the French at the Battle of Quebec. Wolfe and the French commander were killed during the battle.

1806 The English statesman Charles James Fox was taken ill and died at his home in London, just as he was about to introduce a bill abolishing slavery.


1894 The birth, in Manningham, Bradford, of John Boynton Priestley, the English author generally referred to as J.B. Priestley. He published 26 novels, notably The Good Companions (1929), as well as numerous dramas such as An Inspector Calls (1945). 


1902 The first conviction in Britain using finger-prints as evidence was in the case against Harry Jackson by the Metropolitan Police at the Old Bailey. He had left his thumbprint in wet paint on a window sill and was tracked down through it. He was sentenced to seven years.


1916 The birth, in Cardiff, (to Norwegian parents) of the author Roald Dahl. Roald Dahl Plass is a public plaza in the heart of Cardiff Bay. The area is home to the Senedd (Welsh Assembly Building) and the Wales Millennium Centre. Some of Roald Dahl's notable works include James and the Giant Peach, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Fantastic Mr Fox, George's Marvellous Medicine and The BFG (Big Friendly Giant).


1938 John Smith, former leader of the Labour Party was born.


1940 Buckingham Palace was hit by a bomb during 'The Blitz'.


1944 The birth of Carol Barnes, British television newsreader and broadcaster who worked for ITN from 1975 to 2004. In 1994 she was voted Newscaster of the Year at the TV and Radio Industries Club Awards


1957 The Mousetrap became Britain's longest running play, reaching its 1,998th performance.


1958 Cliff Richard made his British TV debut on Jack Good's Oh Boy, performing Move It.


1970 In Colombia, en route to the World Cup finals in Mexico, the captain of the England football team, Bobby Moore was accused of stealing a diamond bracelet from a shop. After being kept under house arrest, he was released and all charges were dropped.


1980 Hercules, the bear who went missing on Benbecula (in the Outer Hebrides) while being filmed for a Kleenex television commercial, was recaptured after 24 days 'on the run'.


1988 Medina Perez, a Cuban diplomat opened fire in a crowded London street because of an American plot to make him defect, (his government said).


1989 Britain's biggest ever banking computer error gave customers an extra £2 billion in a period of 30 minutes; 99.3 per cent of the money was reportedly returned.


2001 Iain Duncan Smith became the new leader of the Tory party.


2001 British defence experts said that forces could be involved in retaliatory strikes against those responsible for the US terrorist attacks on New York's World Trade Centre two days previously.


2012 Jo Shuter, head teacher since 2001 of Quintin Kynaston School in St John's Wood, north-west London was suspended after an investigation into its finances. (Shuter resigned on August 28th when it was announced that she had spent £30,000 of public money on luxury hotels, flowers and her 50th birthday party.) She had earlier had been credited with turning around a school's fortunes, was named head teacher of the year at the 2007 Teaching Awards and was awarded a CBE in June 2010.