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This Day in History - 25th November


1120 Henry I's only legitimate son, William, was drowned when The White Ship (la Blanche-Nef) carrying him from Normandy to England sank off Barfleur. This set up a conflict, known as the Anarchy, for the English crown between Stephen and Henry's daughter, Matilda.

1703 The Great Storm of 1703, the greatest windstorm ever recorded in the southern part of Great Britain, reached its intensity which it maintained through to 27th November. Winds gusted up to 120 mph, and 9,000 people died.


1823 The first pleasure pier, The Chain Pier at Brighton, opened. It closed in 1896 and was destroyed in a storm in the same year.


1835 Birth of Andrew Carnegie, Scottish-born US industrialist and philanthropist who rose from telegraph boy to iron and steel multimillionaire. He devoted his vast wealth to libraries and universities including the Carnegie Hall in New York which opened in 1891.


1896 William Marshall became the first person in Britain to receive a parking summons after leaving his car in Tokenhouse Yard in the City of London, but the case was dismissed.


1932 British Equity, the actors' union, voted for a 'closed shop' to begin operating in 1933.


1937 An inter-regional spelling competition became the first British quiz programme to be broadcast.


1940 World War II: The first flight of the deHavilland Mosquito aircraft. The Mosquito was one of the few operational, front-line aircraft to be constructed almost entirely of wood and, as such, was nicknamed 'The Wooden Wonder' or Mossie to its crews. When it entered production in 1941 it was one of the fastest operational aircraft in the world.


1952 The play, The Mousetrap by Agatha Christie, opened in London, at the Ambassador's Theatre where it remained for 21 years. By Saturday 12th April 1958 it had become the longest running production of any kind in the history of British Theatre.


1953 Hungary, led by their talented footballer Ferenc Pushkas, beat England 6-3 at Wembley to become the first foreign team to achieve an away win at Wembley.


1969 John Lennon returned his MBE in protest against British involvement in Biafra and British support of US involvement in Vietnam.


1981 The inquiry into the Brixton riots in April blamed serious social and economic problems affecting Britain's cities.


1984 Band Aid rock stars gathered at Sarm Studios in London to record 'Do They Know It's Christmas', to aid famine relief in Ethiopia.


1991 Winston Silcott became the first of the 'Tottenham Three', convicted for the 1985 killing of a policeman in Tottenham, North London, to have his conviction overturned.


2005 Former football star George Best died in hospital at the age of 59 after suffering multiple organ failure. He was a talented and charismatic player and became one of the first celebrity footballers. Best's subsequent extravagant lifestyle led to various problems, most notably alcoholism, which he suffered from for the rest of his adult life. A common description of his place in football history is summed up by the quote 'Maradona good; Pelé better; George Best.'


2012 34 year old former two-weight world champion Ricky Hatton announced his retirement from boxing following his loss to Vyacheslav Senchenko in Manchester. Quote by Hatton "A fighter knows and I know it isn't there any more. I have got to be a man and say it is the end of Ricky Hatton."


2013 It was announced that Clare's Law, which enables people to check the police record of their partners, would be expanded (in March 2014) to cover all of England and Wales. The policy is named after Clare Wood, who was murdered by her ex-boyfriend George Appleton at her Salford home in February 2009.