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What are the days that changed Britain?

Host_Ryan - One Show team | 16:41 UK time, Monday, 23 February 2009

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All this week historian Dan Snow has been looking at the Five Days That Changed Britain. Yesterday he wound the clock back to August 43AD and the start of the Roman invasion of Britain.

Today he turns his attention to December 31 1600 and the day that Queen Elizabeth granted the East India Company's charter to trade in the East Indies, a move which would help turn Britain into a global superpower. Watch the film here


More information:

BBC History: Britain's presence in India


You can watch all Dan's Days That Changed Britain films here.


Which days do think were the most important in the development of Britain? Let us know here. The best suggestions will be used in a quiz to test Dan's historical know-how in the studio on Friday.


Remember: If you're happy for your comment to be read out on air, please include your first name and location.

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  • 1. At 7:32pm on 23 Feb 2009, penzancepete wrote:

    Can't give the exact date but what about the world's firtst fare paying passengers on a railway locomotive? Not Stephenson of course but Richard Trevithick in London in 1808. Trevithick built the world's first railway locomotive in 1804 (which is why the bicentenary of the railway was 2004) and the world's first successful self-propelled road vehicle (a 4.5 ton 'car') which ran on Christmas Eve 1801 in Camborne, Cornwall. We have a full-scale working replica of this vehicle if Dan wishes to see it, built for the 2001 bicentenary.

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  • 2. At 7:35pm on 23 Feb 2009, KernowKeith wrote:

    Thank you Dan Snow for the piece about George Stevenson BUT you made it sound as if it were Stevenson that invented the steam engine but it was Cornishman, Richard Trevithick! OK he invented the engine for the tin mines and Stevenson used that invention in a different way - fair enough but don't mislead people into thinking it was he who invented the steam engine in the first place!!!!
    Keith, Camborne.

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  • 3. At 7:35pm on 23 Feb 2009, kaccanal wrote:

    The day when the canals where first built without the canals the materials for the railways would not have got there. Although
    the railway eventually meant the demise of the canals. the Kennet and Avon canal will be 200 years old in 2010. It was first opened to through traffic when Caen Hill(a national monument) was completed on the 28th December 1810. the canals were the moterways of there day.

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  • 4. At 7:40pm on 23 Feb 2009, Ryan - One Show team wrote:

    Thanks for your suggestions - and please send in more! They'll be passed onto the TV production team. Please leave your first name and location with your suggestion - you may be mentioned on the show on Friday. Thanks for visiting The One Show website.

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  • 5. At 7:45pm on 23 Feb 2009, Shazboxer wrote:

    I think that Dan should brush up on the age of steam and make a study of Richard Trevithick It surely was Trevithick who changed not only British but world history when he ran the first steam locomotive in 1802. This was 23 years before Stephenson. Contact the Trevithick Society. www.trevithick-society.org.uk

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  • 6. At 7:48pm on 23 Feb 2009, luckysurferdave wrote:

    what about the deal struck between the English and Dutch effectivally swaping the very small english owned island of Run in south east asia for a slightly larger island on the east american coast, the main settlment here was known as New Amsterdam, today better known as New York.
    surly this deal chagned the course of history with the development of north american under the english and the downfall of the 'spice islands' under the dutch.

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  • 7. At 8:08pm on 23 Feb 2009, Bean_here_bee_four wrote:

    Id like to post three significant World changing inventions. I am sure Dan's dad will approve:-1847 Robert Thompson made the first pneumatic tyre, adapted for cycle use by John Boyd Dunlop in 1888.
    I think it was in 1839 when Kirkpatric Macmillan invented the first mechanically propelled bicycle.

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  • 8. At 8:09pm on 23 Feb 2009, Bean_here_bee_four wrote:

    It was Reg Oakley who posted the pneumatic tyre and bike inventions

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  • 9. At 8:12pm on 23 Feb 2009, Wasicu wrote:

    Days that changed history. How about the Yorkshireman John Harrison. He invented the Sea Cloack and against all odds and the Royal Society invented LONGITUDE. Over the course of 5 years, with the Help and backing of Edmund Halley and George Graham, he biult H1. In 1736, Harrison sailed to Lisbon on HMS Centurion and returned on HMS Orford. On their return both the captain and the sailing master of the Orford praised the design. The master noted that his own calculations had placed the ship sixty miles east of its true landfall which had been correctly predicted by Harrison using H1.

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  • 10. At 8:15pm on 23 Feb 2009, Peter2772 wrote:

    I think that July 1st 1916, the first day of the Battle of the Somme,will always be a date that changed Britain forever. On that day innocence died in the UK. Never again would be see our rulers as infallible and causes in black and white. There was not a community in the country uneffected.

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  • 11. At 8:29pm on 23 Feb 2009, Whovian1172 wrote:

    I think that the battle of Agincourt in 1415 changed warfare forever, as it was one of the first pitched battles in which common people (mainly longbowmen) won against high-ranking nobles and knights. This battle showed that warfare was not only available to the rich and wealthy, but ordinary people. It was also one of the first battles in which cannons were used along with medieval weapons such as swords, crossbows, and longbows; the first signs of modern warfare entering the past.

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  • 12. At 8:32pm on 23 Feb 2009, leooldgit wrote:

    I agree with a previos coment.
    The canals where the forerunner of the railways.So Brindal was as important as Brunel

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  • 13. At 8:37pm on 23 Feb 2009, Whovian1172 wrote:

    In addition to my previous comment, I would like to add that my name is Emma and I live in Derbyshire. (Sorry, I forgot to add my name and location on my previous comment)

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  • 14. At 8:40pm on 23 Feb 2009, superJackbrown wrote:

    Isambard Kingdom Brunel. He is best known for the creation of the Great Western Railway, a series of famous steamships, including the first with a propeller, and numerous important bridges and tunnels. His designs revolutionised public transport and modern day engineering.

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  • 15. At 9:03pm on 23 Feb 2009, NigelG0RXA wrote:

    How about Marconi,

    Whilst not English, his first radio transmissions were from English soil. Then there's morse code and how it was used in communications.

    Take a look at http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/7544147.stm

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  • 16. At 9:06pm on 23 Feb 2009, tiptopsurprise wrote:

    Where to start:

    Women being allowed to study at university

    Henry VIII's reformation of the Church

    The execution of Charles I

    The introduction of compulsory education up to the age of 16

    and for maths geekness...

    The invention of the handheld calculator

    The consistent use of pi rather than numerous symbols to represent the same irrational number

    Algebraic division

    Dijkstra's algorithm

    Kate Leicester

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  • 17. At 9:45pm on 23 Feb 2009, cjjones1979 wrote:

    How about the day the longest underwater tunnel was built in Liverpool? The Queensway Tunnel was eventually brought into use on 17 December 1933, with an official opening on 18 July 1934. So it is officially 75 years old on 18th July this year. I have personally been on the underground tunnel tour and it was a very informative and enjoyable experience!

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  • 18. At 9:46pm on 23 Feb 2009, cjjones1979 wrote:

    Re tunnel - my name is Claire Jones

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  • 19. At 10:13pm on 23 Feb 2009, Mike Clark wrote:

    What about the day in 1792 when a Scottish Engineer used coal gas to provide lighting in his cottage and offices.
    This was the first time that there was light on demand without having to resort to carrying candles from room to room.
    Where would we be without lighting today even though it is now electric.

    Mike Clark Ashford Middx

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  • 20. At 10:15pm on 23 Feb 2009, Mike Clark wrote:

    His Name was William Murdoch.

    Mike Clark Ashford MiddX

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  • 21. At 10:44pm on 23 Feb 2009, Rhiwbinajohn wrote:

    Thanks Dan for an interesting item about Geirge Stevenson but again Wales has been ignored.
    On February 21st 1804 Richard Terevithick' steam locomotive pulled carriages and freight at Pen y Darren, Dowlais.Seventy fare paying passengers and 25 tons of freight. I believe a replica is now at the Swansea Maritime Museum - when it was at Cardiff it ran every summer along a short track at what is now Cardiff Bay.

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  • 22. At 11:42pm on 23 Feb 2009, LoganNiadin wrote:

    The Day the East India Company(probably the 1600s or 1700s) decided to pay all British Men in India £1 for every child they had with an Indian Woman. This led to the creation of (latterly called) The Anglo Indian Community, who with their close ties to the British,and the Indians, perpetuated the British Raj a further Hundred years after the Sepoy Mutiny in 1857, to Indian Independence in 1947.
    Why was that particular day important you ask? well, it was from that day that the seed(excuse the pun!!) of greatness was sown. The Anglo Indian Community had grown to number 300,000, and were educated to a 'glass cealing' level in the English Medium. They were employed in the key areas of The Post and telegraphs, the Railways and The customs and Excise (another glass cealing) and there were a few crack regiments of 'Anglos' cleverly dotted around the Sub-Continent.
    They abandoned The Anglo Indian in 1947. At present the bulk of the community is spread across the globe. They left their place of birth in the thousands to settle in The UK (you had to prove close ties ie a British born Grandfather) Australia and Canada (you had to demonstrate your knowledge and dexterity in the use of western cutlery) and to a lesser extent the USA.
    Where ever they migrated to they have quietly got on with their life and thank God are on the whole doing well. Enjoying this standard of living. Which is only fair, seeing as how their forefathers helped to accumulate the vast wealth that sustains this 'Great Land'.

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  • 23. At 11:43pm on 23 Feb 2009, LoganNiadin wrote:

    Pay all british men 'one pound' is what it should read. LN

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  • 24. At 00:43am on 24 Feb 2009, KeithWinton wrote:

    On June 21st 1889 William Friese Greene was granted Patent No. 10,131 for his 'Apparatus for Taking Photographs in Rapid Series'. This was the first working film camera using celluloid film. It's design has been the basis of all subsequent film camera mechanisms. It was the beginning of the international film industry.

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  • 25. At 09:27am on 24 Feb 2009, amocras wrote:

    Digital TV is now ubiquitous. But when were the first digitally processed images shown on British TV ?

    I think it was as long ago as 1976. Although computer processing of video editing was becoming commonplace by then the processors which could handle the huge amount of data entailed in digital imaging just did not exist ... until their images burst onto the screen at the opening ceremony of the Montreal Olympics.

    And it was a British company behind the breakthrough - Quantel. The company still exists and the pictures should still exist in the archives of BBC TV Sports Department for whom I worked at the time.

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  • 26. At 09:38am on 24 Feb 2009, TopHighRoller wrote:

    The worlds first steam railway locomotive was indeed the 'Penydarren' Locomotive which was built in Merthyr Tydfil,Wales,(the Iron Capital of the World) and made it's first journey on the 14th Feb.1804 from the Penydarren Ironworks to Abercynon,carrying 70 passengers and 10 tons of iron,on it's journey it passed through the Pentrebach tunnel,which again was the first steam railway locomotive tunnel.

    Further details can be found at the following site :-

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  • 27. At 10:14am on 24 Feb 2009, luckysurferdave wrote:

    with rrgards to comment 6, david in cardiff!

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  • 28. At 10:32am on 24 Feb 2009, colindaly wrote:

    The day that changed Britain and the world was the day in or before 1708 when Abraham Darby produced cheap and abundant cast iron using coke. This was the material that was used to make the Industrial Revolution happen. Until then the only widely available material was wood. Brass was to expensive and not strong enough. Not enough iron could be produced using charcoal as the wood was running out.

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  • 29. At 11:14am on 24 Feb 2009, penzancepete wrote:

    Sorry, I miised my name from comment 1.

    Referring to comment 2, Trevithick didn't invent the steam engine of course, but he was the first person to try to use it properly. James Watt considered him a criminal for using steam pressures of over 50psi while his engines used pressures of 1-2psi. It was because of these higher pressures that it was possible to make engines smaller and, thinking outside the box, to make them move themselves.

    Pete Joseph, Curator, the Trevithick Society

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  • 30. At 2:39pm on 24 Feb 2009, missTransman wrote:

    When, in 1831, Michael Faraday demonstrated his discovery of electromagnetic induction he changed the world. The secrete had been found, how to generate electricity. This discovery is probably the most important discovery made in the last 200 years for how many of todays scientific achievements would have been possible without the benefit of electrical power

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  • 31. At 3:36pm on 24 Feb 2009, projectanorak wrote:

    The day that changed my life was 17th October 2007, that day my 14yr struggle to help return Avro Vulcan XH558 aircraft back to the sky where she belonged, actually happened.
    One of the engineers, a hard bitten ex-RAF character, said, with moist eyes, “ she took off like a homesick angel” . Now just over 12months down the line it looks very likely that she will not fly ever again, because we have run out of money, we need approx £600,000 before the end of this month or she will be grounded for ever.. we have a pledge campaign please help?? www.vulcantothesky.org

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  • 32. At 7:32pm on 24 Feb 2009, nalaredlaw wrote:

    What is the relationship between Russia and Berwick upon Tweed and a peace treaty signed about ten years ago? I know!

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  • 33. At 7:32pm on 24 Feb 2009, triciastarkey wrote:

    July 1968 at Westonzoyland in Somerset the last battle was fought on English soil. Surely a memorable year.

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  • 34. At 7:46pm on 24 Feb 2009, Mudsticker wrote:

    Might be a bit dull to some. But Great Britain, United Kingdom or just plain Britain is surely the platform to which any of these dates and events are supposed to be important. So, how about including the dates the very concept of a UK was formally ratified?
    If ever there should be a UK National Day it should be either the date of the Union Of The Crowns (March 1603) when James VI of Scots became King Of England - or the Treaty leading to Union Of The Parliaments (22nd July 1706).
    It is always so astounding that we band about the various above titles of this Island Kingdom of nations so cheaply without ever commemorating its real birth.... All other 'British' achievements and landmarks owe something to path laid on those dates...

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  • 35. At 7:47pm on 24 Feb 2009, neebur66 wrote:

    If the Magna Carta is mentioned then surely the Declaration of Arbroath should be mentioned in the same breath, the document that sealed Scotlands Independence from England until 1707 and was thought of when American Congress came to write theirs.

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  • 36. At 7:52pm on 24 Feb 2009, lollyshow wrote:

    I always enjoy Dan's contributions, Ithink one of the most imortant events in British history was the removal of 70,000 rubber tree seeds by Henry Wickham from Brazil which ultimately led to the decimation of Brazil's rubber industry and economy, and gave Britian a world monopoly in rubber production for several decades

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  • 37. At 8:05pm on 24 Feb 2009, Liam wrote:

    Perhaps a little known moment (outside Wales that is) in late August 1406 could have been a turning point in modern British History? Owain Glyndwr's rebellion had shaken the whole country and the Tripartate Indenture he drew up with Edmund Mortimer and the Earl of Northumberland was to carve up the whole of England: Glyndwr would rule over a Wales that stretched to Cheshire, Shropshire and Herefordshire; Mortimer all of southern and western England; the rest ruled by the Earls of Northumberland. Glyndwr had struck an alliance with France and the Bretons and had allowed them to land an army at Milford Haven. The story goes that the army then marched through Wales to within ten miles of Worcester, where they squared up to Henry IV's army. After eight days facing up to each other, the Welsh/French army turned around and went home, for reasons that no historian has ever been able to explain. If the armies had fought and the French and Welsh had won, how different our modern history would have been! The details of this story are hazy however, and some doubt that it really happened. But it's an intruiguing moment in British history if it did...

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  • 38. At 8:32pm on 24 Feb 2009, stollez wrote:

    How about 04/11/1839 and the Chartist uprising in Newport, South Wales. It was the last large scale armed rebellion in the UK.

    Zoe Stollery
    Cwmbran, South Wales

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  • 39. At 8:58pm on 24 Feb 2009, neillb123 wrote:

    Surely the first flight of Concorde in 1969 is worthy of note. It was the only aircraft that stopped people in their tracks to look skyward.

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  • 40. At 9:40pm on 24 Feb 2009, jabbajockey wrote:

    Days the changed britain! but were they truly Great?

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  • 41. At 9:59pm on 24 Feb 2009, warriorhistorybuff wrote:

    I would like to nominate two events that are landmarks in british history. The first is 21st October 2005 and Nelson's great victory at Trafalgar. His brilliant tactics and inspirational leadership prevented invasion, secured Britain's naval domination for 100 years .

    The second is May 10th 1940. Churchill became Prime Minister and made the most remarkable speech ever made to the House of Commons. "I have nothing to offer except blood, toil, tears and sweat", he said. After the fall of France if Halifax had been prime minister a disastrous attempt would have been made to come to some kind of accommodation with Hitler. Only Churchill had the vision to see that that was impossible and that Hitler had to be beaten.

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  • 42. At 10:04pm on 24 Feb 2009, Thor-Dale wrote:

    25th September 1066 Battle of Stamford Bridge (followed by 14th October 1066 - Battle of Hastings)

    Harald Hardrada's Viking army beaten by Harold Godwinson and his Fyrd. all this before marching south again to face William of Normandy and unfortunately losing!

    Who knows what course the country would have taken if Harold Godwinson had been victorious!

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  • 43. At 11:12pm on 24 Feb 2009, september65 wrote:

    A day that changed Britain (much for the worse) was the day the age of majority was lowered from 21 to 18!!! Until then teenagers knew just how far to go as they were still officially in the care of their parents until they were 21. In many cases, teenagers views changed between 18 and 21, as it gave them a chance to grow up. They could not buy anything on hire purchase, get married without permission etc.
    THEN, kids, some still at school suddenly became "adults" at 18, and did as they pleased. Many got into debt as they bought and bought things which they couldn't afford. It was a case of "I can do as I please, I am an adult now!!" As I said, someone could be 18 in September, but still at school until the following JUly. I certainly pinpoint that time as a time when Britain declined.

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  • 44. At 11:38pm on 24 Feb 2009, jabbajockey wrote:

    The WORST 'day' that C_H_A_N_G_E_D Britain, was the long D_R_A_W_N_O_U_T act of submitting Britain to 'post-democracy', known as the 40yrs submission to european dictatorship. Tell it like it is Dan!

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  • 45. At 08:50am on 25 Feb 2009, keithneath wrote:

    What about 5th July 1948?
    The day the NHS was created, surely one of the most significant events in the history of the UK.

    Keith Bradley-Adams, Neath, Glamorgan.

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  • 46. At 09:26am on 25 Feb 2009, CairnTerrier wrote:

    Stephenson - no Trevithick - no

    The first steam engine was built by Hero (or Heron) of Alexandria 2000 years earlier.

    Jethro, Cheshire

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  • 47. At 10:44am on 25 Feb 2009, liskeardgirl wrote:

    Be very careful if you venture West of the Tamar Dan. There was an engineer there called Trevithick who was 25 yrs ahead of Stephenson.

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  • 48. At 3:47pm on 25 Feb 2009, redruthroyston wrote:

    The introduction of street lighting throughout the world's cities promoted great social change. People could walk around town in relative safety at night. We owe the concept to one of the inventions of the great William Murdoch, who installed gas lighting in his house in Redruth, Cornwall in 1792, this was the first house in the world to be lit by gas. Thereafter gas lighting spread throughout towns and cities and street lighting was born.

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  • 49. At 6:02pm on 25 Feb 2009, greyJumbug wrote:

    Pricess Diana getting killed.

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  • 50. At 6:04pm on 25 Feb 2009, CairnTerrier wrote:

    "Magna Carta - did she die in vain"

    (Anthony Aloysius St John Hancock)

    Jethro, Cheshire

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  • 51. At 7:32pm on 25 Feb 2009, ScottProbert wrote:

    For me the day that has changed the world is February the 28th 1953.

    The Mr Crick walked into a Cambridge pub with Mr Watson to celebrate the fact that they had unravelled the structure of DNA, saying: "We have discovered the secret of life!"

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  • 52. At 7:40pm on 25 Feb 2009, ScottProbert wrote:


    Name and location for the DNA quote is:

    Scott from Cirencester

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  • 53. At 8:23pm on 25 Feb 2009, reyles wrote:

    Always good to point out to Americans "taking the 5th amendment", that they are actually "invoking the Magna Carta", which dates from 560 years earlier.

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  • 54. At 8:30pm on 25 Feb 2009, sedge_42 wrote:

    1st transatlantic TV pictures using Telstar and received at Goonhilly.
    1st demonstration of radar at Daventry
    1st TV pictures broadcast from Alexandra Palace.
    April 1912- Sinking of the Titanic.

    Dave, Corby (Northants).

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  • 55. At 8:33pm on 25 Feb 2009, sedge_42 wrote:

    1st use of a programmable electronic computer at Bletchley Park

    Dave, Corby (Northants)

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  • 56. At 9:52pm on 25 Feb 2009, kaccanal wrote:

    A Question for Dan 'What was the name of the only satalite and launch vehical that great Britain has ever built and launched, and where was it launched from?
    I also posted the canal subject my name is Elaine and my favorite canal is the Kennet & Avon.

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  • 57. At 10:05pm on 25 Feb 2009, kaccanal wrote:

    re 56 I am assistant curator of the Kennet & Avon Canal Trust Museum, but worked on the first satalite when I was a lot younger.

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  • 58. At 05:29am on 26 Feb 2009, queenAbistar wrote:

    I think one date that changed history was 2nd July 1928 when the Equal

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  • 59. At 05:31am on 26 Feb 2009, queenAbistar wrote:

    I think that one date that changed history was 2nd July 1928. This was the day the Equal Franchise Act was passed allowing women equal rights to voting.

    Abi, Saffron Walden

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  • 60. At 7:31pm on 26 Feb 2009, lordtup wrote:

    Little doubt one of the dates that stands alongside those already submitted is 20/06/1948 when a certain boy was born in a small midland town who would go on to achieve greatness (it just hasn't happened yet)

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  • 61. At 11:41pm on 26 Feb 2009, knox_lad wrote:

    I consider that these years (inperticular 1870) should go down in history as the day that 'green' power was used for the first time.

    In 1868 at a Place called Cragside, near Rothbury, Northumberland, a hydraulic engine was installed, with water being used to power labour-saving machines such as laundry equipment, a rotisserie and a hydraulic lift. In 1870, water from one of the estate's lakes was used to drive a Siemens dynamo in what was the world's first hydroelectric power station. The resultant electricity was used to power an arc lamp installed in the Gallery in 1878. The arc lamp was replaced in 1880 by Joseph Swan's incandescent lamps in what Swan considered 'the first proper installation' of electric lighting.

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  • 62. At 11:55pm on 26 Feb 2009, knox_lad wrote:

    1878, the year Joseph Wilson Swan recieved a patent, for the incandescent light bulb, that was about a year before Thomas Edison applied. Swan's house, Underhill in Low Fell, Gatehead was the first house in the world to have working light bulbs installed.

    Graeme, Alnwick

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  • 63. At 00:10am on 27 Feb 2009, knox_lad wrote:

    Turbinia was launched on 2 August 1894. Despite the success of the turbine engine, initial trials with one propeller were disappointing.

    Turbinia turned up unannounced at the Navy Review for Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee at Spithead on 26 June 1897 in front of the Prince of Wales, Lords of the Admiralty and foreign dignitaries. As an audacious publicity stunt the Turbinia, which was much faster than all other ships of the time, raced between the two lines of large ships and steamed up and down in front of the crowd and princes with impunity, while easily evading a Navy picket boat that tried to stop it, indeed almost swamping it with its wake. The success of Turbinia let to the the first turbine powered merchant vessel, the Clyde steamer TS King Edward, followed in 1901. (Her successor, the TS Queen Mary of 1932, is now a floating restaurant on the River Thames in London). Also because of the success the Admiralty confirmed in 1905 that all future Royal Navy vessels were to be turbine powered, and in 1906 the first turbine-powered battleship, the revolutionary HMS Dreadnought, was launched.

    Graeme, Alnwick

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  • 64. At 11:31am on 27 Feb 2009, superiorGlaswegian wrote:

    Days that changed the world.... the year 1759, Britain becomes the global superpower of the 18th century, starts the dominance of the English language. Many battles, most against the French. Events include death of Handel, births of Robert Burns, Mary Wollstonecraft, Wm Pitt the younger, Wm Wilberforce. Siege of the Heights of Abraham, deaths of both Montcalm and General Wolfe. Books published - Tristram Shandy (Sterne), Rasselas (Dr Johnson), Candide (Voltaire), The theory of moral sentiments (Adam Smith). James Watt opened a shop in Glasgow. A whole book has been written about this momentous year, 300 years ago.

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  • 65. At 8:31pm on 27 Feb 2009, gloslog wrote:

    I enjoy the One Show however, todays show 27/02/09 was spoilt by incorrect information. At the end of the show there was a quiz to guess the historical events from headlines sent in by viewers. There was one headline which refered to women getting the right to vote. Dan Snow the history man guessed wrongly with the prompting of Adrian Chiles that it was 1928. The correct date was 1918 I would of thought the BBC could get this right it is realy only school boy history facts we should all know.

    Phillip Rowe

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  • 66. At 06:30am on 28 Feb 2009, queenAbistar wrote:

    In reply to Phillip Rowe's comment above.

    You are quite right that women were given the vote in 1918 BUT they had to be over 30 and own their own house. The date i sent into The One Show (2nd July 1928) was the day when The Equal Franchise Act was passed giving ALL women over 21 the right to vote. This was the first time women had been given equal voting rights as men.

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  • 67. At 07:35am on 28 Feb 2009, Moysset wrote:

    Hello Sorry to take you to task over your steam engine; In fact it was Richard Trevithick 1771-1833 who built the first steam engine he went to Japan and started the railway system there. He cam back to the UK having travelled down the Amazon a very sick man and destitute and he died. While Richard was away the other guy stole the idea and called it his own. I have rare documents of Trevithick and I know his great,great, great grandson Frank Okuno who is trying to get the history changed. The steam train was developed in Camborne Cornwall, that's were the old Cornish song comes from ''Up Camborne hill coming down'' Strange how history can be distorted shown on TV and everbody thinks it's true? Great show Kind reagrds Bob Brimley

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  • 68. At 11:00am on 28 Feb 2009, callyfragilistic wrote:

    The day that the wonder that was Woolies went into receivership. I feel that the government really missed a trick here. If only they had stepped in to save a much loved ailing wooden-floored wonderland so much a feature of High Streets up and down the country. A shopping experience much beloved by generations over the last century. A family institution that GB (yeah that one! Ironic eh?) could have used as a bit of a stabilising anchor with govt. support built on principles of honesty and home-grown friendly values. A family concern . . a going concern that's now gone - leaving gaping holes nationwide reflecting the hollowness of . . you can fill in the rest.

    Where is a visionary when you need one?
    Where is Leslie Crowther?

    Ross - Elgin

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  • 69. At 3:23pm on 03 Mar 2009, Arnalt wrote:

    Decisive events occurred as follows:
    1. Roman invasion August 44 A.D.
    2. Germanic invasion 5th Century A.D.
    3. Norman invasion 14 Oct 1066
    4. U. S. Declaration of Independence arrives at Court August 1776.
    5. WWII ends Sept 1945

    Ron Kramer, Omak WA

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  • 70. At 9:34pm on 03 Mar 2009, Sognolewis wrote:

    As we fast approach the passing of the last Tommy from WW1 it saddens me to think that a true unsung hero of that time is forgotten, when in fact he deserves a place in Trafalgar square as much as Lord Nelson. Sir Horace Smith-Dorrien saved the only army Britain possessed at the time The BEF. If it had been lost there was nothing to take it's place. Germany would have been the force home by Christmas having conquered us most of Europe too.
    On 26 August 1914, he mounted a vigorous defensive action, a "stopping blow", which despite heavy casualties, halted the German advance. With the BEF saved, he resumed an orderly retreat.
    His decision to stand and fight enraged French who accused Smith-Dorrien of jeopardising the whole BEF, an accusation which did not amuse Smith-Dorrien's fellow corps commander, Haig, who already believed French to be incompetent.
    A real Lion amongst donkeys. He should be on the 4th plinth.

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  • 71. At 12:57pm on 05 Mar 2009, captainGilo wrote:

    If our current leaders said what Prime Minister Rudd of Australia said - below - then today would be the greatest day for Britain.
    Prime Minister Kevin Rudd - Australia

    Muslims who want to live under Islamic Sharia law were told on Wednesday to get out of Australia , as the government targeted radicals in a bid to head off potential terror attacks..

    Separately, Rudd angered some Australian Muslims on Wednesday by saying he supported spy agencies monitoring the nation's mosques. Quote: 'IMMIGRANTS, NOT AUSTRALIANS, MUST ADAPT. Take It Or Leave It. I am tired of this nation worrying about whether we are offending some individual or their culture. Since the terrorist attacks on Bali , we have experienced a surge in patriotism by the majority of Australians. '

    'This culture has been developed over two centuries of struggles, trials and victories by millions of men and women who have sought freedom'

    'We speak mainly ENGLISH, not Spanish, Lebanese, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, or any other language. Therefore, if you wish to become part of our society . Learn the language!'

    'Most Australians believe in God. This is not some Christian, right wing, political push, but a fact, because Christian men and women, on Christian principles, founded this nation, and this is clearly documented. It is certainly appropriate to display it on the walls of our schools. If God offends you, then I suggest you consider another part of the world as your new home, because God is part of our culture.'

    'We will accept your beliefs, and will not question why. All we ask is that you accept ours, and live in harmony and peaceful enjoyment with us.'

    'This is OUR COUNTRY, OUR LAND, and OUR LIFESTYLE, and we will allow you every opportunity to enjoy all this. But once you are done complaining, whining, and griping about Our Flag, Our Pledge, Our Christian beliefs, or Our Way of Life, I highly encourage you take advantage of one other great Australian freedom, 'THE RIGHT TO LEAVE'.'

    'If you aren't happy here then LEAVE. We didn't force you to come here. You asked to be here. So accept the country YOU accepted.'

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  • 72. At 5:21pm on 06 Mar 2009, Proleofengland wrote:

    I'm a bit dissappointed in Dan Snow for thinking that 1066 doesnt even come in his top five!

    The Magna Carta that followed 1066, the loss of Saxon names within that one generation, the Castles built all over the Island...

    How can this event in British History be seen as less an event than Dan's top five?

    The other four important British events:
    Invention of Rugby at Rugby School 1823
    (best sport ever invented)
    Formation of the Parachute Regiment 1941
    (my regiment, up the Reg)
    Baptist Union of Great Britain formed 1837
    (my Church)
    The birth of Chris Prole 1983

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  • 73. At 9:59pm on 06 Mar 2009, Bluedaisy5001 wrote:

    I know that the series on the days that changed British history has now finished and I really enjoyed it. It was good that it covered a diversity of subjects and was well presented by Dan. To be honest you could go on forever about the days that have shaped and moulded the nation in which we live. If you wanted to view a more extensive list you could check out the list of The Fifty Things You Need to Know About British History. Well done to Dan and the team.

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