March 14

1953: Expenditure of nearly £7m was approved by the Ministry of Health for the Oxford Regional Hospital Board, which included approval for a new operating theatre at the Victoria Hospital, Swindon, and extensions to the X-Ray Department at the Great Western Hospital. The board were particularly interested in improving mental hospitals and levelling standards in other hospitals.

1953: Sir Harold W Jackson, former Lord Mayor of Sheffield, opened the first of three new primary schools, on the Moredon Estate in Swindon. The school stood on a 25-acre site that was shared with the junior and secondary modern school. The primary school was aimed at serving the area in Moredon where 764 houses had been built.

1963: More than 800 competitors signed up, and were rehearsing to take part in 100 different classes, at the Swindon Festival, to be held at the Town Hall and the Arts Centre, Devizes Road, said a spokesman for the Civic Offices, Swindon. A new innovation was to be included in the arts festival, he said. It was classical dancing, which would take place at the Town Hall. The festival was under the auspices of the Swindon Corporation's Libraries, Museums and Arts Committee.

1963: A Swindon man, Corporal Alan Diamond, whose home was in Ferndale Road, was among the 1st Green Jackets (43rd and 52nd) serving in the North Brunei Revolt. He was a member of the MT Platoon at Headquarters Company stationed in Kota Belud, 53 miles from the colony's capital. He had served half of his six years. Before joining he was an apprentice in a Swindon electrical firm. He got married just before he left for the Far East.

1973: It was reported that Mr Swindon, the then chief executive Mr David Murray John, would be made an honorary freeman of the borough. Mr Murray had been appointed as town clerk on May 1, 1938 and at 29-years-old was said to be the youngest in England. He had been deputy chief clerk for 10 months. In 1942 he was awarded the OBE for his services as town clerk and as chief air raid precautions controller. He was the 13th man to be awarded the freedom of the borough.

1973: The new chairman of London Stock Exchange was Mr George Loveday of Bushton Manor, near Wootton Bassett. Mr Loveday, 63, a stockbroker in the London firm had worked in the stock exchange since 1938. He was deputy chairman of the stock exchange since 1971. He was educated at Winchester.

The World

1804: Johann Strauss the Elder, composer of waltzes, was born in Vienna.

1879: Albert Einstein, physicist and mathematician, was born in Ulm, Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany.

1883: Death of German philosopher and father of Communism Karl Marx.

1885: First production of The Mikado, by Gilbert and Sullivan, at the Savoy Theatre, London.

1939: The 'Timeless' Test between South Africa and England in Durban ended - it started on March 3 - because the England players had to rejoin their ship.

1961: The New English Bible was published.

1964: Jack Ruby was found guilty in Dallas of killing Lee Harvey Oswald, alleged assassin of President John F Kennedy, and was sentenced to death. He died of a blood clot in the lung in 1967.

1984: Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams was shot and seriously injured by Loyalist gunmen.

1991: The Birmingham Six - six Irishmen jailed in 1975 for their alleged part in the IRA Birmingham pub bombings and the murder of 21 people - were freed after the court of appeal quashed their convictions.

2018: Comedian and former Bullseye presenter Jim Bowen died aged 80, following a battle with ill health.


Sir Michael Caine, actor/author, 86; Quincy Jones, producer/composer, 86; Wolfgang Petersen, film director, 78; Rita Tushingham, actress, 77; Jasper Carrott, actor/comedian, 74; Pam Ayres, poet, 72; Billy Crystal, actor/comedian/director, 71; Tessa Sanderson, former athlete, 63; Prince Albert of Monaco, 61; Nicolas Anelka, football manager and former player, 40; Jamie Bell, actor, 33.