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This Day in History - 22nd October


1707 Four British Royal Navy ships ran aground near the Isles of Scilly. Admiral Sir Cloudesley Shovell and more than 1,400 sailors drowned in one of the worst maritime disasters in the history of Britain. It was later determined that the main cause of the disaster was the navigators' inability to accurately calculate their positions.

1877 An explosion at the Blantyre mine in Scotland killed 207 miners the youngest aged 11. It remains Scotland’s worst mining accident.


1878 The first floodlit rugby match took place, between Broughton and Swinton, at Broughton, Lancashire.


1910 American born Doctor Hawley Crippen was convicted at the Old Bailey Central Criminal Court in London of poisoning his wife Cora. Crippen was hanged on November 23rd at Pentonville prison.


1930 The BBC Symphony Orchestra played their first concert, conducted by Sir Adrian Boult at the Queen’s Hall, London.


1937 The Duke and Duchess of Windsor arrived in Berlin to meet German leader Adolf Hitler, to study housing conditions.


1963 A BAC One-Eleven prototype airliner flown by test pilot Mike Lithgow, crashed during stall testing with the loss of all on board. Lithgow became the holder of the World Absolute Air Speed Record in 1953 flying a Supermarine Swift.


1966 A Russian KGB master spy, George Blake, escaped from Wormwood Scrubs in London where he was serving a 40 year sentence for spying against the British Government.


1972 Gordon Banks, England’s star goalkeeper, damaged his eyes in a car crash.


1974 A bomb exploded in a London restaurant near to where opposition leader Edward Heath was dining. Three members of staff were injured.


1975 The 'Guildford Four' were sentenced to life imprisonment after being found guilty of planting IRA bombs in pubs in Guildford and Woolwich. Fifteen years later they had their convictions quashed by the Court of Appeal, following an extensive inquiry into the original police investigation.


1983 The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) held its biggest ever protest against nuclear missiles in London, with an estimated one million people taking part.


1986 The world’s youngest heart transplant patient, a two-and-a-half-month-old baby from north west London, was given the heart of a five-day-old Belgian boy by Professor Magdi Yacoub at Harefield Hospital, Middlesex.


2001 Towns and villages in Cambridgeshire and Essex were on flood alert as forecasters predicted more torrential downpours following what experts said were the worst floods in 20 years.


2006 The first episode ('Everything Changes') of the cult British science fiction television programme Torchwood, a spin-off of Doctor Who. Alien hunter Ianto Jones was played by Welsh actor Gareth David-Lloyd. Remarkably, there is a shrine at Cardiff Bay in honour of Torchwood's fictional Ianto Jones who 'gave his life in defence of the children of this planet' in 2009.


2013 Former BBC broadcaster Stuart Hall was stripped of his OBE by the Queen after he was jailed for a series of sexual assaults on young girls. In June, Hall, aged 83, admitted 14 counts against girls aged from nine to 17 between 1967 and 1985. The Queen directed that the honour should be "cancelled and annulled" and his name be "erased" from the register.