May 2 – May 8 Friday May 2 1969 The QE2 set sail on her maiden voyage. 1996 Glenn Hoddle became England soccer manager. 1997 John Major resigned as leader of the Conservative Party. 1998 The Euro was launched at a summit in Brussels. Births: Benjamin Spo

May 2 - May 8

Friday May 2

1969 The QE2 set sail on her maiden voyage.

1996 Glenn Hoddle became England soccer manager.

1997 John Major resigned as leader of the Conservative Party.

1998 The Euro was launched at a summit in Brussels.

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Births: Benjamin Spock, psychologist, 1903.

Today's birthdays: Engelbert Humperdinck, singer, 72; David Suchet, actor, 62; Alan Titchmarsh, gardener and broadcaster, 59; Jimmy White, snooker player, 46; Brian Lara, West Indies Test cricket batsman, 39; David Beckham, soccer superstar, 33; Lily Allen, singer-songwriter, 23.

Deaths: Leonardo Da Vinci, artist, 1519; Joseph McCarthy, US senator and ringleader of the notorious Communist witch hunts in the 1950s, 1957; J Edgar Hoover, director of the FBI, 1972; Sir Michael Horden, actor, 1995; Oliver Reed, actor, 1999; Ted Rogers, comedian, 2001.

Saturday May 3

1951 The Festival Hall opened on London's South Bank at the beginning of the Festival of Britain.

1997 Britain won the Eurovision Song Contest with the entry Love Shine a Light by Katrina and the Waves.

1999 A tornado in Oklahoma City registered a speed of 318mph.

Births: Niccolo Machiavelli, Italian politician and author, 1469; Bing Crosby, singer-actor, 1903; Sugar Ray Robinson, world boxing champion, 1921.

Today's birthdays: Henry Cooper, British heavyweight boxing champion, 74; Frankie Valli, singer-songwriter with The Four Seasons, 71; Ken Hom, celebrity chef, 59; Jo Brand, comedienne, 51; Sandi Toksvig, broadcaster, 50; Ben Elton, comedian, 59; Rob Brydon, comedian, 43.

Deaths: Hughie Green, television presenter of Opportunity Knocks and Double Your Money, 1997; Godfrey Evans, England and Kent cricket wicket-keeper, 1999.

Sunday May 4

1896 First edition of the Daily Mail published.

1904 Work began on the Panama Canal.

1979 Margaret Thatcher became Prime Minister.

1990 Latvia declared its independence from the Soviet Union.

2006 Steve McClaren was appointed England soccer manager.

Births: Audrey Hepburn, actress, 1929.

Today's birthdays: Eric Sykes, comedian, 85; Kate Garraway, GMTV presenter, 40.

Deaths: Diana Dors, actress, 1984; Bernie Winters, comedian, 1991.

Monday May 5

1821 First edition of the Manchester Guardian published.

1912 First edition of the Russian newspaper Pravda published.

1998 Alec Stewart became England Test cricket captain.

2000 Ken Livingstone became Mayor of London.

Births: Karl Marx, German philosopher, 1818; Sylvia Pankhurst, suffragette, 1882; Tyrone Power, Hollywood star, 1913; Tammy Wynette, country singer, 1942.

Today's birthdays: Michael Palin, comedian and traveller, 65; Richard E Grant, actor, 51; James Cracknell, British Olympic rowing champion, 36; Craig David, singer, 27.

Deaths: Napoleon Bonaparte, French emperor, 1821.

Tuesday May 6

1910 George V became king after the death of Edward VII.

1937 The German airship Hindenburg caught fire over New Jersey, killing 36 passengers.

1954 Roger Bannister ran a mile in under 4 min.

1961 Spurs completed the Football League and FA Cup double.

1966 Moors murderers Ian Brady and Myra Hindley were jailed for life.

1974 West German chancellor Willy Brandt resigned.

1994 The Channel Tunnel opened.

Births: Rudolph Valentino, silent movie star, 1895; Stewart Granger, actor, 1913; Orson Welles, director of Citizen Kane, 1915.

Today's birthdays: Tony Blair, Prime Minister, 55; George Clooney, actor, 47.

Deaths: Edward VII, 1910; Marlene Dietrich, actress and singer, 1992; Johnny Morris, presenter of Tales of the Riverbank and Animal Magic, 1999; Bernard Weatherill, Speaker of the House of Commons, 2007.

Wednesday May 7

1765 HMS Victory was launched.

1915 The liner Lusitana was sunk by a German submarine.

1960 Leonid Brezhnev became President of the Soviet Union.

1995 Jacques Chirac was elected President of France.

Births: Johannes Brahms, German composer, 1833; Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky, Russian composer, 1840; Gary Copper, star of High Noon, 1901; Eva Peron, Argentinian leader, 1919.

Today's birthdays: Nicholas Hynter, stage director, 52.

Deaths: Douglas Fairbanks Jr, actor, 2000.

Thursday May 8

1429 Joan of Arc defeated the English Army at Orleans.

1945 Britain celebrated VE Day.

1970 The Beatles last album, Let It Be, was released.

1984 The Soviet Union decided to boycott the Olympic Games in Los Angeles.

Births: Harry Truman, US President, 1884; Sid James, Carry On actor, 1932.

Today's birthdays: Sir David Attenborough, naturalist and broadcaster, 82; Jack Charlton, England World Cup 1966 hero, 73; Peter Benchley, author of Jaws, 68; Norman Lamont, ex-Chancellor of the Exchequer, 66; Pat Barker, author of Regeneration and The Ghost Road, 65; Enrique Iglesias, singer, 33.

Deaths: John Stuart Mill, philosopher, 1873; Paul Gauguin, French painter, 1903; Henry Gordon Selfridge, store owner, 1947; George Peppard, actor, 1994; Dirk Bogarde, actor, 1999.