Decades

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1950

January 01 - Radio Beijing announces that Tibet will shortly be "liberated". 03 - Wafd Party wins Egyptian elections. 04 - Britain asks the US for a stockpile of atomic bombs. 05 - President Truman rules out military aid...

1951

January 01 - Chinese and North Korean forces advance across the 38th Parallel and through UN lines. 01 - First episode of The Archers is broadcast nationally on the BBC Light Programme. 01 - Bill Byford (Saxon) born. 04 -...

1952

January 05 - Winston Churchill arrives in Washington for talks with Truman. 07 - General Dwight D Eisenhower says he will run for US President. 12 - The prototype Vickers Valiant, Britain's only long-range jet for carrying the atomic bomb, crashes. 13 - The Iranian...

1953

January 01 - The Maldive Islands become a republic. 01 - Arthur 'Bomber' Harris is knighted in the New Year Honours list. 01 - Hank Williams dies. 02 - The RAFs first supersonic fighters, 400 US-designed Sabres, arrive at...

1954

January 01 - Flashing indicator lights become legal on motor vehicles in Britain. 10 - A BOAC Comet jet airliner on its way from Singapore to London comes down into the Mediterranean about 20 minutes after taking...

1955

January 01 - The US gives $216 million in aid to South Vietnam. 01 - The 1955 Cotton Bowl Classic American football game is won by the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. 02 - President José Antonio Remón Cantera...

1956

January 01 - Sudan becomes an independent Republic. 03 - USSR gives technical aid to China. 03 - Movie star Mel Gibson is born in New York. 05 - Prince Rainier III of Monaco announces his engagement to actress...

1957

January 01 - Grandmaster Flash (Joseph Saddler) born. 04 - A London man upset with the shape of his nose is jailed for ten years for threatening a plastic surgeon with a gun. 07 - Chinese Premier Chou...

1958

January 01 - Albanian fighters shoot down a British freight plane that allegedly strayed into Albanian airspace. 01 - The European Economic Community (the "common market") comes into being. The UK is not included. 01 - West German...

1959

January 01 - The dictator of Cuba, Fulgencio Batista, is overthrown by Fidel Castro's guerrillas and flees to the Dominican Republic. 02 - Fidel Castro proclaims a new government in Cuba. 02 - The USSR launches lunar rocket...

1960

January 01 - French Cameroon becomes the Republic of Cameroon with Ahmadun Ahidjo as its first president. 01 - Johnny Cash performs a New Year Concert for the prisoners at San Quentin penitentiary in California. One particularly...

1960 Olympic Games (Rome)

Though the Rome games were held at the height of the Mediterranean summer (against medical advice) they were a spectacular success. Making the most of the country’s rich history, the wrestling competition was held in the...

1961

January 01 - In Britain, the Farthing (¼ of a penny) is withdrawn from circulation and ceases to be legal tender. 02 - Oral contraceptives for women go on sale in Australia. 03 - US severs diplomatic relations...

1962

January 01 - Western Samoa becomes independent. 01 - The Beatles are turned down by Decca Records, whose A&R man Dick Rowe enters the history books when he advises them that "groups with guitars are out". 03 -...

1963

January 01 - In Australia, the Bogle/Chandler case mystifies police who believe poison may have been used to kill the couple. 02 - UPI reports that 30 Americans have died in Vietnam combat to date. 10 - Premier...

1964

January 01 - In Britain, the first edition of Top of the Pops screens on the BBC. Host Jimmy Savile introduces The Rolling Stones, Dusty Springfield, The Hollies, The Swinging Blue Jeans and The Dave Clark...

1964 Olympic Games (Tokyo)

The first-ever Olympic Games to be held in Asia took place in Tokyo in 1964, 24 years after the Japanese wartime government had forced their Olympic Committee to resign as hosts after they had last...

1965

January 01 - Stanley Matthews is the first-ever professional footballer to be knighted. 01 - The first hydrofoil service begins in Sydney Harbour in Australia. 02 - Indonesia withdraws from the United Nations. 04 - Poet and author T...

1966

January 01 - Pope Paul VI appeals for peace in Vietnam. 01 - In Central African Republic, Colonel Jean-Bedel Bokassa seizes power. 05 - Pentridge Prison escapees Ronald Ryan and Peter Walker are captured in Concord, Sydney. The...

1966 World Cup Final

In 1966 England hosted the World Cup, in a climate of football fever generated in-part by the much-loved mascot World Cup Willie. The cartoon lion appeared on everything from beer to breakfast cereals. Of the 16 nations...

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1950

January 01 - Radio Beijing announces that Tibet will shortly be "liberated". 03 - Wafd Party wins Egyptian elections. 04 - Britain asks the US for a stockpile of atomic bombs. 05 - President Truman rules out military aid...

1951

January 01 - Chinese and North Korean forces advance across the 38th Parallel and through UN lines. 01 - First episode of The Archers is broadcast nationally on the BBC Light Programme. 01 - Bill Byford (Saxon) born. 04 -...

1952

January 05 - Winston Churchill arrives in Washington for talks with Truman. 07 - General Dwight D Eisenhower says he will run for US President. 12 - The prototype Vickers Valiant, Britain's only long-range jet for carrying the atomic bomb, crashes. 13 - The Iranian...

1953

January 01 - The Maldive Islands become a republic. 01 - Arthur 'Bomber' Harris is knighted in the New Year Honours list. 01 - Hank Williams dies. 02 - The RAFs first supersonic fighters, 400 US-designed Sabres, arrive at...

1954

January 01 - Flashing indicator lights become legal on motor vehicles in Britain. 10 - A BOAC Comet jet airliner on its way from Singapore to London comes down into the Mediterranean about 20 minutes after taking...

1955

January 01 - The US gives $216 million in aid to South Vietnam. 01 - The 1955 Cotton Bowl Classic American football game is won by the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. 02 - President José Antonio Remón Cantera...

1956

January 01 - Sudan becomes an independent Republic. 03 - USSR gives technical aid to China. 03 - Movie star Mel Gibson is born in New York. 05 - Prince Rainier III of Monaco announces his engagement to actress...