1852 in the United Kingdom
- Monarch – Victoria
- Prime Minister –
- Parliament – 15th (until 1 July), 16th (until 11 November)
- 17 January – United Kingdom recognises the independence of the Transvaal.
- 3 February – the new chamber of the House of Commons of the United Kingdom in the Palace of Westminster, designed by Charles Barry and Augustus Pugin, is opened.
- 5 February – Holmfirth Flood caused by collapse of the embankment at Bilberry reservoir in the West Riding of Yorkshire: 81 killed.
- 11 February – the first British public toilet for women opens in Bedford Street, London.
- 14 February – Great Ormond Street Hospital in London admits its first patient.
- 21 February – Earl Russell resigns as Prime Minister after his Militia Bill is amended.
- 23 February – the Earl of Derby forms a minority Protectionist Conservative government.
- 27 February – Lord Derby appoints Benjamin Disraeli as Chancellor of the Exchequer.
- 1 March – Archibald William Montgomerie, 13th Earl of Eglinton is appointed Lord Lieutenant of Ireland.
- April – Samuel Orchart Beeton begins publication of The Englishwoman's Domestic Magazine, the first for women.
- 1 April – start of the Second Burmese War.
- 21 April – St George's Cathedral, Southwark, St Chad's Cathedral, Birmingham, Nottingham Cathedral and Salford Cathedral are raised to the dignity of cathedrals of the Roman Catholic church by decree of the Sacred Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith.
- May – the Museum of Manufactures, predecessor of the Victoria and Albert Museum, is opened in London, initially at Marlborough House.
- 21 June – trial of Cardinal John Henry Newman for the defamation of Giacinto Achilli opens in London. Newman is convicted on 25 June.
- 29 June – Protestant-Catholic riots in Stockport.
- 30 June – colony of New Zealand granted its first representative government.
- July – first Synod of the newly created Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Westminster is held at St Mary's College, Oscott, Birmingham.
- 7–31 July – general election: Lord Derby retains power.
- 2 September – the public library in Campfield, Manchester, is the first to offer free lending under the Public Libraries Act 1850.
- 1 October – Patent Law Amendment Act comes into effect, merging the English, Scottish and Irish patent systems.
- 14 October – Great Northern Railway opens London King's Cross station, the largest in Europe at this time.
- 19 October – The last fatal duel on English soil takes place on Priest Hill, between Englefield Green and Old Windsor, between two French political exiles Emmanuel Barthélemy and Frederic Cournet. Cournet is killed; Barthélemy is tried for murder but convicted only of manslaughter and serves a few months in prison. He is hanged two years later after another killing.
- 1–30 November – The second-wettest month in the EWP series (wettest until 1903) with an average of 202.5 millimetres (7.97 in). It beats November 1772 with 200.8 millimetres (7.91 in).
- 17 December – Earl of Derby resigns as Prime Minister, following the defeat of his budget.
- 28 December – Earl of Aberdeen becomes Prime Minister, leading a Whig-Peelite coalition.
- End of the Great Famine (Ireland). In the period it has lasted since 1845, one million people have emigrated from Ireland. The Irish now make up a quarter of the population of Liverpool, and the same is true of cities on the east coast of North America.
- The House of Mercy Anglican sisterhood (which becomes the Community of St John Baptist) is established at Clewer, near Windsor, to minister to reformed prostitutes and other marginalised women.
- New Model Union the Amalgamated Society of Engineers, Machinists, Smiths, Millwrights and Patternmakers involved in a lockout.
- Nailmakers' Strike in the West Midlands.
- Serialisation of Charles Dickens' novel Bleak House.
- Roget's Thesaurus (1st edition).
- William Makepeace Thackeray's novel The History of Henry Esmond.
- 4 May – Alice Liddell, inspiration for Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (died 1934)
- 18 April – George Clausen, artist (died 1944)
- 23 August – Arnold Toynbee, economic historian (died 1883)
- 12 September – Herbert Henry Asquith, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (died 1928)
- 28 September – John French, World War I field marshal (died 1925)
- 2 October – William Ramsay, chemist, Nobel Prize laureate (died 1916)
- Kate Vaughan, born Catherine Alice Candelin or Candelon, dancer and actress (died 1903)
- 10 February – Samuel Prout, painter (born 1783)
- 4 September – William MacGillivray, naturalist and ornithologist (born 1796)
- 14 September
- 9 November – John Talbot, 16th Earl of Shrewsbury, peer and lay Roman Catholic leader (born 1791)
- 21 November – Mary Berry, writer (born 1763)
- 27 November – Ada Lovelace, early computer pioneer and the daughter of Lord Byron (born 1815)
- "Holmfirth – Is there more to it than Last of the Summer Wine?". BBC.
- Penguin Pocket On This Day. Penguin Reference Library. 2006. ISBN 0-14-102715-0.
- Palmer, Alan; Veronica (1992). The Chronology of British History. London: Century Ltd. pp. 272–273. ISBN 0-7126-5616-2.
- Beetham, Margaret (2004). "Beeton, Samuel Orchart (1831–1877)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 2010-10-04.
- Decreta Quatuor Conciliorum Provincialium Westmonasteriensium, 2nd edn, London: Burns & Oates, p.56; translation in: Robert Guy OSB, The Synods in English, Stratford-on-Avon: St Gregory Press, 1886 p.101.
- Physick, John (1982). The Victoria and Albert Museum: the History of its Building. Oxford: Phaidon. p. 16.
- Ward, W. (1912). "10: The Achilli Trial". Life of John Henry Cardinal Newman. London: Longmans, Green and Co. p. 291.
- "Lord Derby looses bigotry on the streets". The Manchester Guardian. 3 July 1852. Retrieved 2012-07-12.
- "Anniversary of first public library". BBC News. 5 September 2002. Retrieved 14 April 2010.
- Jackson, Alan A. (1985). London's Termini. Newton Abbot: David & Charles. ISBN 0-7153-8634-4.
- "The common is steeped in history". Keep Englefield Green – The Heritage. Keepenglefieldgreen.org. Retrieved 2010-05-30.
- Hadley Center Ranked EWP.
- Kinealy, Christine (1994). This Great Calamity: The Irish Famine 1845–1852. Dublin: Gill & Macmillan. pp. xvi–ii. ISBN 0-7171-4011-3.
- Mumm, Susan (1999). Stolen Daughters, Virgin Mothers: Anglican Sisterhoods in Victorian Britain. Leicester University Press. p. 8. ISBN 0-7185-0151-9.
- Fletcher, M.H.W. (1969). Netherton: Edward I to Edward VIII. Dudley Public Libraries. ISBN 0-900911-05-0.
- "Icons, a portrait of England 1840–1860". Archived from the original on 17 August 2007. Retrieved 2007-09-13.
- "Samuel Prout (1783-1852)". artuk.org. Retrieved 3 January 2017.