A Year To Remember

Cliff Michelmore captures the essence of some memorable years.



The year that Nazi war criminals went on trial in Nuremberg and Britain staged a Victory Parade. Rationing and shortages continued, and 50,000 GI brides headed for a better life in America. A new Labour government launched the National Health Service and nationalised the coal and steel industries.


The year in which Britain's first Labour government lasted only nine months, Eric Liddell triumphed at the Paris Olympics, and British archaeologists discovered the fabulous golden effigy of Tutankhamun.


The year in which the Titanic sank, Captain Scott and his companions died in the Antarctic, and Britain suffered an outbreak of foot and mouth disease. And Ragtime, a shocking new music form from America, was all the rage.


The year in which the Queen celebrated her Silver Jubilee, Elvis died aged 42, Virginia Wade won Wimbledon, and the Sex Pistols caused mayhem with their version of `God Save the Queen'.


The year in which soldiers returning from the Great War found widespread unemployment, Nancy Astor became the first female MP, Alcock and Brown flew the Atlantic, and Suzanne Lenglen shocked Wimbledon with her short tennis dress.

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The year in which the parking meter was invented, Malcolm Campbell topped 254 miles per hour at Daytona, Amelia Earhart flew the Atlantic solo and the Lindbergh baby was kidnapped. Also Broadcasting House opened its doors, and King George V delivered the first live Christmas message to the Empire.


The year that world peace was shattered by the outbreak of the Korean War, and Britain ushered in the jet age as the Comet took to the skies.


The year in which Harold Macmillan identified a wind of change blowing across the African continent, Princess Margaret got married, Kennedy was elected president, and `Lady Chatterley' was put on trial.


The year in Neville Chamberlain returned from Germany to proclaim `peace in our time', Orson Welles caused a nationwide panic in America with his broadcast of `War of the Worlds', and Disney's `Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs' dominated the silver screen.


The year of the Suez Crisis, the Hungarian Uprising and Grace Kelly's marriage to Prince Rainier, and the year Britain rocked around the clock.


The year in which strikes paralysed Britain, Harold Wilson lost the election, the Beatles split up and American women burned their bras.


The year in which the war finally came to an end and the radio programme `Family Favourites' was born.


An eight-part series in which Cliff Michelmore catches the essence of memorable years gone by. 7: 1968. The year in which Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King were assassinated.

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the year in which the Mini was launched and the M1 opened. The Cold War continued, and Britain's cod war began.


The year in which wartime rationing finally came to an end, America exploded a hydrogen bomb and Roger Bannister broke the four-minute mile.


The year in which the Boer War raged, Victoria reigned, and women abandoned their bustles and got on their bikes.


Sir Winston Churchill died, the Beatles got their MBEs, Mary Whitehouse started her clean-up-TV TV' campaign, and the BBC's decision to move `The Magic Roundabout' to a pre-5.00pm slot was met by adult opposition.


The year in which the General Strike paralysed Britain, inventor John Logie Baird pioneered television, and screen idol Rudolph Valentino died.


the year of the drought, the Cod War, Harold Wilson's resignation honour's list, and a new title for Mrs Thatcher.


Churchill warns of `evil and dangerous storm clouds' as Hitler rises to power; England wins the Ashes during the controversial bodyline tour; `King Kong' hits cinema screens; and British scientists isolate the virus responsible for flu.


Short skirts scandalised Wimbledon; Americans looked for ways around Prohibition; Ireland exploded over home rule; and Charlie Chaplin was divorced by his wife.


The year of the Cuban Missile Crisis thalidomide, `That Was the Week That Was', and the twist.


The year which saw the outbreak of war was also noteworthy for the first parachute jump, militant action by suffragettes, and George Bernard Shaw's `Pygmalion'.

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He ends the series by recalling 1948, when as a 28-tear-old squadron leader he took part in the Berlin Airlift, when the railways were nationalised, the NHS was born, and Princess Elizabeth gave birth to a son.


He begins with one of the most dramatic years of the century - 1940.


This year saw Hitler's Olympic Games and the launch of the Queen Mary.


In this year, Britain fought off the hardships of the war years, said farewell to the London trams and entered the modern era of jet travel and cinema.


This year saw the three-day week, `bath with a friend', streaking at Twickenham and the death of Rutland.


Churchill resigns the premiership, 15,000 West Indians arrive in Britain, and Mickey Mouse becomes flesh and blood at Disneyland.


Cliff Richard took a `Summer Holiday', Cathy McGowan said `Ready, Steady, Go!' and John Profumo nearly brought down the Conservative government.


Rubbish piled up and strike-hit hospitals during a winter of discontent. In the summer nude, bathing became de rigeur in Brighton, and Britain had a new - female - prime minister.


Britain was swinging, the Gemini IX space mission was in trouble, Chi Chi the panda was sent on a blind date to Russia, Mohammed Ali refused to fight in Vietnam, and the World Cup took place.


D-Day and the liberation of much of Europe spelled victory, the first prefab was constructed, street lights lit up Nottingham's market place and the Home Guard hung up their guns.

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The year of the first Antarctic crossing, the first motorway, the arrival of teenagers and the last appearance of debutantes.