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Scots Guards during the siege
Scots Guards during the siege

The Siege of Sidney Street of January 1911 was a gunfight in the East End of London. During an attempted jewellery robbery at Houndsditch by a gang of immigrant Latvians, their leader George Gardstein was mortally wounded. Two weeks later, the last two unapprehended suspects were tracked down at 100 Sidney Street in Stepney. Local residents were evacuated, and a gunfight broke out with the police. After a six-hour siege, a fire consumed the building, and the bodies of the two suspects were found within. One of the firemen, Superintendent Charles Pearson, was killed when the building collapsed. The siege marked the first time the police had requested army assistance in London to deal with an armed stand-off. It was also the first siege in Britain to be filmed, by Pathé News. Winston Churchill, the Home Secretary, who was present at the siege, said that he gave no instructions to the police, but a Metropolitan police history of the event contradicted this. One of those arrested for the robbery had his conviction overturned on appeal; the rest were acquitted. The events were fictionalised in novels and in the films The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934) and The Siege of Sidney Street (1960). (Full article...)

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Ecuadorian cacique
Ecuadorian cacique

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Yavuz Sultan Selim Bridge under construction in 2015
Yavuz Sultan Selim Bridge under construction

On this day...

August 30: Constitution Day in Kazakhstan (1995); St. Rose of Lima's Day in Peru

Erwin Rommel
Erwin Rommel
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Kampoeng Rawa

Kampoeng Rawa is a tourist attraction in Ambarawa, Central Java, located within the green belt around Lake Rawa Pening. Opened in August 2012, it is owned and operated by twelve groups of farmers and fishermen who were funded by the Artha Prima Credit Union. It is intended to improve the welfare of local farmers and fishermen while promoting an understanding of the lake's ecology. Facilities include a floating restaurant, pendopo, crafts centre, fishing area, and docks. It has been challenged for its lack of permission to build in the green belt and the possible ecological impact.

Photograph: Chris Woodrich

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