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On this day: January 8

Today’s birthdays

Dame Shirley Bassey (pictured), singer, 82

John McTiernan, film director, 68

Rachel Nichols, actress, 39

Kim Jong-un, North Korean leader, 35

David Silva, footballer, 33

Paolo Nutini, singer/songwriter, 32

Tom Watson, deputy leader of the Labour Party, 52

It happened today…

1800: The first soup kitchens for the poor of London began.

1815: The British, led by General Sir Edward Pakenham, were defeated at New Orleans in the last battle Britain fought against the US.

1824:Wilkie Collins, English pioneer of the detective and suspense story, was born in London. He wrote The Woman In White (1860) and The Moonstone (1868).

1832:Bell’s New Weekly Messenger published the first cartoon to appear in an English newspaper.

1889:Dr Herman Hollerith of New York patented an electrically operated computer to process data. The company he formed to market his invention evolved into the giant IBM.

1921:David Lloyd George became the first British prime minister to occupy Chequers, a country mansion in Buckinghamshire, presented to the nation as a gift by Lord Lee of Fareham.

1935:Elvis Presley (above) was born in Tupelo, Mississippi, the survivor of twin boys.

1940:Sugar, bacon and butter were rationed in Britain.

1982:Spain ended its siege of Gibraltar and reopened the frontier. In return, Britain ended its opposition to Spain joining the EEC.

1989: A British Midland 737 crashed into an embankment alongside the M1 near Kegworth, Leicestershire, killing 47 people.

1997:Kevin Keegan quit as manager of Newcastle United after five years in the post.

Quote of the day

‘He’s a con artist. He’s a huckster. He’s a scam artist. And what bothers me is that people don’t see that’ — Actor Robert De Niro (pictured) on president Donald Trump

Thought for the day

‘When I have to cry, I think about my love life. When I have to laugh, I think about my love life’ — Actress Glenda Jackson