1947 in the United Kingdom
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Events from the year 1947 in the United Kingdom.
- January – One of the most severe winters on record in the UK.
- 1 January – The government nationalises the coal industry in the UK and Cable & Wireless Ltd.
- 2 January – British coins cease to include any silver content.
- 5 February – The Minister of Food, John Strachey, announces the £25 million Tanganyika groundnut scheme.
- 10 February – Major cuts in power supply due to shortage of fuel under severe winter conditions are imposed in England and Wales.
- 20 February – Earl Mountbatten of Burma is appointed as the last Viceroy of India.
- February – Ealing Studios release the film Hue and Cry, regarded as the first of the Ealing Comedies.
- 4 March – Treaty of Dunkirk (coming into effect 8 September) signed with France providing for mutual assistance in the event of attack.
- 14 March – Thames flood and other widespread flooding as the exceptionally harsh winter ends in a thaw.
- March – Postwar boom in births reaches peak.
- 1 April – Raising of school leaving age to 15.
- 3 April – The private healthcare firm BUPA founded.
- 9 April – How Does Your Garden Grow? first broadcast on BBC Radio. As Gardeners' Question Time it will still be running more than sixty-five years later.
- 18 April – In the largest non-nuclear single explosive detonation in history, the Royal Navy sets off 6,800 tonnes of surplus ammunition in an attempt to destroy Heligoland, Germany.
- 23 April – Mumbles Watson-class lifeboat RNLB Edward, Prince of Wales (ON 678) capsizes on service to Liberty ship SS Samtampa off South Wales: all 8 lifeboat and 39 steamship crew are lost.
- 26 April – Charlton Athletic, who lost the FA Cup final last year, win this year's final 1–0 against Burnley.
- May – The Conservative Party publishes its Industrial Charter.
- 6 May – East Kilbride designated as the first New Town in Scotland under powers of the New Towns Act 1946.
- 11–15 June – First Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod is held.
- 15 June – Restrictions on foreign travel imposed during World War II lifted.
- June – Retail Prices Index begins.
- 10 July – The Princess Elizabeth (now Elizabeth II) announces her engagement to Lt Philip Mountbatten (now The Duke of Edinburgh).
- 15 July–20 August – "Convertibility Crisis": Pound sterling fully convertible into United States Dollars, leading to loss of currency reserves.
- 27–28 July – English endurance swimmer Tom Blower becomes the first person to swim the North Channel, from Donaghadee in Northern Ireland to Portpatrick in Scotland.
- 31 July – Fire Services Act returns fire services in the United Kingdom from the National Fire Service to control of local authorities (from 1948) and provides the legislative basis for their organisation for more than fifty years.
- First few days of August – Anti-Jewish riots, primarily in North West England, following 'the Sergeants affair' in Mandatory Palestine.
- 5 August – Release of Holiday Camp, first of the popular Huggetts Trilogy of comedy films.
- 13 August – A mining accident at William Pit, Whitehaven, in the Cumberland Coalfield, kills 104.
- 14 August and 15 August – Pakistan and India gain independence from the UK, remaining Dominions with the Commonwealth of Nations under King George VI.
- 15 August – 'GLEEP' (the Graphite Low Energy Experimental Pile) experimental nuclear reactor runs for the first time at the Atomic Energy Research Establishment, Harwell, Oxfordshire, the first reactor to operate in Western Europe.
- 24 August – First Edinburgh Festival of the Arts opens. On 31 August the first Edinburgh International Film Festival opens as part of the overall festival; it will become the world's oldest continually running film festival.
- September – The University of Cambridge votes to allow women to become full students.
- 29 September – Harold Wilson is appointed President of the Board of Trade at 31, the youngest member of the Cabinet this century.
- October – Snoek is imported as a food fish from South Africa.
- 16 November – The British Army begins to withdraw troops from Palestine.
- 18 November – Tommy Lawton, 28-year-old centre-forward, becomes Britain's first £20,000 footballer in a move from Chelsea to Notts County.
- 19 November – Philip Mountbatten created Duke of Edinburgh, Earl of Merioneth, and Baron Greenwich, with the style His Royal Highness.
- 20 November – The Princess Elizabeth (now Elizabeth II), daughter of George VI marries The Duke of Edinburgh at Westminster Abbey, London.
- 25 November – New Zealand ratifies the Statute of Westminster and thus becomes independent of legislative control by the United Kingdom.
- 29 November – The United Nations approves the Partition Plan for Palestine thus ending the British Mandate of Palestine.
- 6 December – Women are admitted to full membership of the University of Cambridge.
- Edward Victor Appleton wins the Nobel Prize in Physics "for his investigations of the physics of the upper atmosphere especially for the discovery of the so-called Appleton layer".
- Robert Robinson wins the Nobel Prize in Chemistry "for his investigations on plant products of biological importance, especially the alkaloids"
- The Friends Service Council wins the Nobel Peace Prize.
- First permanent Oxfam charity shop begins trading, in Broad Street, Oxford.
- Discovery of the pion, a subatomic particle, by Cecil Frank Powell at the University of Bristol.
- Discovery of the kaon, a subatomic particle, by George Rochester and C. C. Butler.
- Poliomyelitis epidemic in the U.K. begins.
- Royal Military Academy Sandhurst established by merger of the Royal Military College, Sandhurst, and the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich.
- Robert Wiseman Dairies founded by Robert Wiseman with a horse and cart used for doorstep deliveries in East Kilbride.
- The avocet resumes breeding in England, at Havergate Island and Minsmere RSPB reserve.
- Malcolm Lowry's novel Under the Volcano.
- Compton Mackenzie's novel Whisky Galore.
- Stephen Potter's book The Theory and Practice of Gamesmanship: Or, The Art of Winning Games Without Actually Cheating.
- 6 January – Sandy Denny, singer (died 1978)
- 8 January – David Bowie, singer
- 8 January – Jenny Boyd, model
- 30 January – Les Barker, poet
- 30 January – Steve Marriott, singer and musician (Small Faces, Humble Pie) (died 1991)
- 20 February – Peter Osgood, footballer (died 2006)
- 7 March – Matthew Fisher, singer-songwriter and producer
- 25 February – Elton John, musician
- 24 March – Alan Sugar, businessman
- 16 April – Gerry Rafferty, singer-songwriter (died 2011)
- 23 April – Bernadette Devlin McAliskey, Member of Parliament
- 8 May – John Reid, Labour politician, Home Secretary
- 2 July – Ann Taylor, Labour politician
- 6 June – David Blunkett, Labour politician, Home Secretary
- 6 July – Richard Beckinsale, actor (died 1979)
- 7 July – Rob Townsend, rock drummer (Family)
- 17 July – Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall (née Shand), 2nd wife of Charles, Prince of Wales
- 19 July – Brian May, guitarist (Queen)
- 23 July – David Essex, actor and singer
- 31 July – Richard Griffiths, actor (Withnail and I, Harry Potter) (died 2013)
- 23 August – Willy Russell, playwright
- 28 August – Emlyn Hughes, footballer (died 2004)
- 16 September – Roger Millward, English rugby league footballer and coach
- 17 September – Tessa Jowell, Tessa Jowell, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport
- 30 September – Marc Bolan, musician (died 1977)
- 5 October – Brian Johnson, singer
- 21 November – Nickolas Grace, actor
- 1 December – Bob Fulton, English-Australian rugby league footballer and coach
- 6 February – Ellen Wilkinson, English socialist (born 1891)
- 6 March – Sir Halford Mackinder, geographer (born 1861)
- 16 May – Frederick Hopkins, biochemist, recipient of the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine (born 1861)
- 24 July – Ernest Austin, composer (born 1874)
- 1 December
- 14 December
- Penguin Pocket On This Day. Penguin Reference Library. 2006. ISBN 0-14-102715-0.
- Glover, Bill (2010). "Cable & Wireless Ltd". History of the Atlantic Cable & Undersea Communications. Retrieved 2011-01-03.
- Wood, Alan (1950). The Groundnut Affair. London: Bodley Head. OCLC 1841364.
- "Drastic Cuts In Power Essential". The Times (50682) (London). 1947-02-11. p. 4.
- "Hue and Cry". screenonline. BFI. Retrieved 2010-07-09.
- Palmer, Alan; Veronica (1992). The Chronology of British History. London: Century Ltd. pp. 396–397. ISBN 0-7126-5616-2.
- Cullingham, G. G. (November 2012). "The Floods of 1947". Histories of Windsor. The Royal Windsor Web Site. Retrieved 2013-03-01.
- Kynaston, David (2007). Austerity Britain 1945–51. London: Bloomsbury. ISBN 978-0-7475-7985-4.
- "Education leaving age". Politics.co.uk. 12 June 2007. Archived from the original on 23 December 2007. Retrieved 2010-08-25.
- "About The Programme". Gardeners' Question Time. BBC. Retrieved 2011-03-30.
- Smith, Carl (1977). The Men of the Mumbles Head: the Story of the Mumbles Life-boat from 1832. Llandysul: Gomer Press. ISBN 0-85088-384-9.
- The Edinburgh Gazette: . 9 May 1947. Retrieved 2007-10-30.
- "Llangollen International Eisteddfod - How it Started". Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod. Retrieved 2012-05-08.
- The Lost Decade Timeline, BBC
- "Finding RPI Data". Office for National Statistics. 2010. Retrieved 2011-01-06.
- Trilling, Daniel (23 May 2012). "Britain's last anti-Jewish riots". New Statesman. Retrieved 29 May 2012.
- "60th anniversary of William Pit disaster". BBC. 2008. Retrieved 2010-10-14.
- Pakistan entry at The World Factbook
- India entry at The World Factbook
- "Scotland Hosts the World's Longest Running Film Festival". Scotland.com. Retrieved 2014-07-18.
- Marr, Andrew (2007). A History of Modern Britain. London: Macmillan. p. 83. ISBN 978-1-4050-0538-8.
- "Tommy Lawton". Retrieved 2011-09-22.
- "Fact sheet: Women at Cambridge: A Chronology". University of Cambridge. 2010. Retrieved 2010-09-13.
- The Nobel Prize in Physics 1947
- The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 1947
- The Nobel Peace Prize 1947
- Lattes, C. M. G.; Muirhead, H.; Occhialini, G. P. S.; Powell, C. F. (1947). "Processes involving charged mesons". Nature 159 (4047): 694–697. Bibcode:1947Natur.159..694L. doi:10.1038/159694a0.
- Smallman-Raynor, M. R.; Cliff, A. D. (2006). Poliomyelitis : a world geography: emergence to eradication. Oxford University Press. pp. 317–18. ISBN 019924474X.
- "Company history". Robert Wiseman Dairies. Retrieved 2011-01-23.
- Lowrey, Burling (Autumn 1993). "The Timelessness of Stephen Potter's Gamesmanship". Virginia Quarterly Review: 718–26.
- 4 The Guardian, June 2006