1950 in the United Kingdom
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|1950 in the United Kingdom:|
|1948 | 1949 | 1950 | 1951 | 1952|
|Individual countries of the United Kingdom|
|England | Northern Ireland | Scotland | Wales|
|Sport, Television and music|
Events from the year 1950 in the United Kingdom.
- 16 January — The BBC Light Programme first broadcasts the daily children's radio feature Listen with Mother.
- 26 January
- 8 February — George Kelly is sentenced to hang for the murder of the Cameo cinema manager in the Liverpool suburb of Wavertree, a conviction which will be quashed as unsafe fifty-three years later.
- 20 February — Ealing Studios release the film The Blue Lamp, introducing the character PC George Dixon, played by Jack Warner (with Dirk Bogarde as a young criminal).
- 21 February — Cunard liner RMS Aquitania arrives at the scrapyard in Faslane at the end of a 36-year career.
- 23 February - The 1950 general election is held. Labour is defending a triple-figure parliamentary majority in government, but their popularity took a plunge last year following the devaluation of the pound, and the failure of the groundnuts scheme,with many recent opinion polls showing a comfortable Conservative lead. BBC Television broadcasts its first election results programme, however no footage survives due to it being broadcast live and thus, was never recorded in the first place.
- 24 February — Clement Attlee wins the general election, giving Labour a second term in government after their election triumph five years earlier, in 1945. However, he retains power with a majority of just five seats, a stark contrast to the 146-seat majority that he gained previously. Among the lost Labour seats is Bexley in Kent, which 33-year-old Conservative Party candidate Edward Heath seizes from Ashley Bramall. Both Communist Party MP's lose their seats. University constituencies have been abolished at the dissolution. Voter turnout is 83.9%, an all-time high for a UK general election under universal suffrage.
- 1 March — The German-born theoretical physicist Klaus Fuchs, working at Harwell Atomic Energy Research Establishment, is convicted following a confession of supplying secret information about the atomic bomb to the Soviet Union.
- 6 March–8 March — The World Figure Skating Championships are held in London.
- 8 March — Carmaker Rover tests a revolutionary new turbine-powered concept car.
- 12 March — Eighty of the eighty-three passengers on board an Avro Tudor V aircraft are killed when it crashes at Llandow in Glamorgan, making it the world's worst air disaster at the time.
- 16 March — The Gambols comic strip first appears in the Daily Express.
- 1 April — Corby, a village in Northamptonshire, is designated as the first new town in central England, providing homes for up to 40,000 people by the 1960s.
- 14 April — The Eagle comic first appears, featuring Dan Dare and Captain Pugwash.
- 29 April — Arsenal win the FA Cup with a 2–0 win over Liverpool at Wembley Stadium.
- 13 May — First Grand Prix held at Silverstone.
- 20 May — First package holiday air charter, by Vladimir Raitz of Horizon Holidays, from Gatwick Airport to Calvi, Corsica, for camping.
- 21 May — A tornado tracks across England from Wendover to Blakeney, Norfolk (68 miles (109 km)), the longest ever such track in Britain.
- 26 May — Motor fuel rationing comes to an end after eleven years, marking another stage in the phasing-out of rationing that was introduced in the wake of the Second World War.
- 6 June — The BBC Light Programme first broadcasts the popular radio comedy feature Educating Archie, with Max Bygraves.
- 7 June — Pilot episode of the series The Archers broadcast on BBC Radio. It will still be running sixty years later.
- 24 June — World Cup opens in Brazil with the England national football team competing for the first time.
- 28 June — In the World Cup, the England national football team is humiliated by losing 1–0 to the United States in Belo Horizonte.
- 29 June — The England cricket team loses the Test Match by 326 runs to the West Indies at Lord's, an event commemorated in Lord Beginner's calypso Victory Test Match.
- 11 July — First broadcast of the popular BBC Television pre-school children's programme Andy Pandy.
- 19 July — Release of the film Treasure Island made in England with Robert Newton as Long John Silver.
- 31 July
- Sainsbury's opens the first purpose-built supermarket, at Croydon.
- Warwickshire’s Eric Hollies beats Nobby Clark’s record of 65 innings without reaching double figures when dismissed for 7 against Worcestershire. Hollies will eventually make it 71 before scoring 14 against Nottinghamshire on 16 August.
- 15 August — The Princess Elizabeth gives birth to her and her husband, The Duke of Edinburgh's second child and only daughter. 
- 19 August — The Football League season begins with four new members, taking membership from 88 to 92 across the four divisions. The new members are Colchester United, Gillingham (who lost their league status in 1938), Scunthorpe & Lindsey United and Shrewsbury Town.
- 24 August — Vale Park football stadium opens in Stoke-on-Trent, to serve Port Vale F.C. It has an initial capacity of more than 30,000; it had been billed as the "Wembley of the North" when first proposed, but high costs mean that the new stadium is much more basic than had been planned.
- 27 August — The BBC makes its first television broadcast from the European continent.
- 29 August
- 8 September — 116 miners are trapped underground in a landslide at Knockshinnoch Castle colliery at New Cumnock in Ayrshire, Scotland.
- 9 September
- 11 September — The rescue operation from Knockshinnoch Castle colliery is completed, with all 116 miners saved.
- 1 October — Full-time military service by conscripted National Servicemen is extended to two years.
- 25 October — The Festival Ballet, later to become the English National Ballet, founded by Alicia Markova and Anton Dolin, makes its debut performance.
- 26 October — The rebuilt House of Commons, following its destruction by bombing in World War II, is used for the first time.
- October — Alan Turing's paper Computing machinery and intelligence, proposing the Turing test, is published in Mind.
- October — A group of Conservative politicians publishes the tract One Nation: a Tory approach to social policy.
- November — Attempt to hold the Second World Peace Congress at Sheffield City Hall is thwarted by the British authorities preventing many international delegates from entering the country and it is relocated to Warsaw.
- 10 December
- Bertrand Russell wins the Nobel Prize in Literature "in recognition of his varied and significant writings in which he champions humanitarian ideals and freedom of thought".
- Cecil Frank Powell wins the Nobel Prize in Physics "for his development of the photographic method of studying nuclear processes and his discoveries regarding mesons made with this method".
- 25 December — The Stone of Scone, the traditional coronation stone of Scottish monarchs, English monarchs and more recently British monarchs, is stolen from London's Westminster Abbey by a group of four Scottish students with nationalist beliefs. It turns up in Scotland on 11 April 1951.
- 28 December — An order to designate the Peak District as the first of the National parks of England and Wales is submitted to the Minister of Town and Country Planning for approval.
- North of Scotland Hydro-Electric Board begins work on Sloy-Awe Hydro-Electric Power Scheme.
- The best-selling Kenwood Chef food mixer is first introduced.
- Agatha Christie's Miss Marple novel A Murder is Announced.
- Catherine Cookson's first novel Kate Hannigan.
- William Cooper's novel Scenes from Provincial Life.
- Marion Crawford's royal biography The Little Princesses: the Story of the Queen's Childhood by her Nanny.
- Elizabeth David's book Mediterranean Cooking.
- C. S. Forester's novel Mr. Midshipman Hornblower.
- Doris Lessing's novel The Grass is Singing.
- C. S. Lewis's novel The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, first of The Chronicles of Narnia series (16 October).
- Mervyn Peake's novel Gormenghast, second of the eponymous series.
- Barbara Pym's novel Some Tame Gazelle.
- Evelyn Waugh's novel Helena.
- 1 January — Chris Black, Scottish hammer thrower
- 19 January — David Tredinnick, politician
- 4 February — Pamela Franklin, actress
- 13 February — Peter Gabriel, musician
- 16 February — Peter Hain, politician
- 19 February — Andy Powell, musician (Wishbone Ash)
- 22 February — Julie Walters, actress
- 27 March — Terry Yorath, footballer and football manager
- 30 March — Robbie Coltrane, actor and comedian
- 3 April — Sally Thomsett, actress
- 20 April — Robert Mair, engineer and academic
- 22 April — Peter Frampton, musician
- 1 May — Danny McGrain, footballer
- 3 May — Mary Hopkin, singer
- 11 May — Jeremy Paxman, television presenter and author
- 12 May — Jenni Murray, radio presenter
- 15 May — Keith Mills, businessman
- 17 May — Alan Johnson, politician
- 22 May — Bernie Taupin, songwriter
- 22 May — Mary Tamm, actress (died 2012)
- 23 May — Martin McGuinness, Irish republican politician and soldier (died 2017)
- 1 June — Tom Robinson, singer and musician
- 13 June — Nick Brown, politician
- 14 June — Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury
- 30 June — Olly Flynn, race walker
- 6 July — Jonathon Porritt, English environmentalist and academic
- 8 July — Sarah Kennedy, television presenter
- 14 July — Bruce Oldfield, fashion designer
- 18 July — Richard Branson, entrepreneur
- 19 July — Simon Cadell, actor
- 23 July — Len McCluskey, trade unionist
- 26 July — Susan George, actress
- 27 July — Simon Jones, actor
- 30 July — Harriet Harman, politician
- 15 August — Anne, Princess Royal
- 11 September — Barry Sheene, motorcycle racer (died 2003 in Australia)
- 14 September — Paul Kossoff, guitarist (Free) (died 1976)
- 21 September — Charles Clarke, politician
- 25 October — Steve Barry, race walker
- 14 November — Sarah Radclyffe, production manager and producer
- 6 December — Helen Liddell, politician
- 10 December — Nicky Henderson, horse trainer
- 21 December — David Thacker, director and screenwriter
- 28 December — Clifford Cocks, cryptographer
- 21 January — George Orwell, author (born 1903)
- 9 March — Timothy Evans hanged by Albert Pierrepoint for the murder of his baby daughter (pardoned in 1960s) (born 1924)
- 19 March — Walter Haworth, chemist, Nobel Prize laureate (born 1883)
- 24 March — Harold Laski, political theorist and economist (born 1893)
- 30 March — Joe Yule, Scottish-born comedian (born 1894)
- 6 September — Olaf Stapledon, author and philosopher (born 1886)
- 21 September — Arthur Milne, physicist (born 1896)
- 2 November — George Bernard Shaw, playwright (born 1856)
- 12 November — Julia Marlowe, English-American actress (born 1865)
- 23 November — Percival Mackey, pianist, composer and bandleader (born 1894)
- 28 November — James Corbitt hanged for murder by Albert Pierrepoint (born c. 1913)
- Kynaston, David (2007). Austerity Britain 1945–1951. London: Bloomsbury. ISBN 978-0-7475-7985-4.
- "India becomes a republic". BBC News. 26 January 1950. Archived from the original on 17 January 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-29.
- The Blue Lamp at the Internet Movie Database
- "Labour wins slim majority". BBC News. 24 February 1950. Archived from the original on 7 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-29.
- Representation of the People Act 1948.
- "Communist spy jailed for 14 years". BBC News. 1 March 1950. Archived from the original on 13 January 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-29.
- "Gas turbine car gets road test". BBC News. 8 March 1950. Retrieved 2008-01-06.
- "The Lost Decade Timeline, BBC". Archived from the original on 16 October 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-29.
- Calder, Simon (10 January 2004). "Heroes & Villains: Vladimir Raitz". The Independent.
- Simons, Paul (2008). Since Records Began. London: Collins. pp. 35–6. ISBN 978-0-00-728463-4.
- "UK drivers cheer end of fuel rations". BBC News. 26 May 1950. Archived from the original on 7 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-29.
- Penguin Pocket On This Day. Penguin Reference Library. 2006. ISBN 0-14-102715-0.
- Konstam, Angus (2008). Piracy: The Complete History. Oxford: Osprey Publishing. p. 313. Retrieved 2011-10-11.
- Palmer, Alan; Veronica (1992). The Chronology of British History. London: Century Ltd. pp. 401–402. ISBN 0-7126-5616-2.
- BBC On this Day — 15 August
- "Results : Saturday 19th August 1950". statto.com. Retrieved 2013-05-13.
- "The Fall and Rise of Gillingham Football Club - from non-league wilderness to league status". 2009-09-22. Retrieved 2013-05-13.
- "1950-51 Football League". F.C.H.D. Retrieved 2013-05-13.
- "History". Port Vale F.C. Retrieved 2013-05-13.
- "British troops arrive in Korea". BBC News. 29 August 1950. Archived from the original on 7 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-29.
- "Miners trapped underground by landslide". BBC News. 8 September 1950. Archived from the original on 7 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-29.
- The Hutchinson Factfinder. Helicon. 1999. ISBN 1-85986-000-1.
- Meisner, Nadine (3 December 2004). "Dame Alicia Markova". The Independent. Retrieved 2010-06-10.
- Roche, T.W.E. (1969). The Key in the Lock. London: Murray. pp. 176–7. ISBN 0-7195-1907-1.
- "The Nobel Prize in Literature 1950". Retrieved 2008-01-29.
- "The Nobel Prize in Physics 1950". Retrieved 2008-01-29.
- "National Park In The Peak". The Times (51885). London. 1950-12-29. p. 3.
- Robertson, Patrick (1974). The Shell Book of Firsts. London: Ebury Press. p. 242. ISBN 0-7181-1279-2.
- "Lucy Barfield: The Real Lucy of Narnia". Into the Wardrobe. 27 May 2006. Retrieved 2010-10-04.