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Events from the year 1994 in the United Kingdom.




  • 14 January - The Duchess of Kent joins the Roman Catholic Church, the first member of the Royal Family to convert to Catholicism for more than 300 years.[1]
  • 20 January - Despite the continuing economic recovery and falling unemployment, the Tory government is now 20 points behind Labour (who score at 48%) in the latest MORI poll. [1]
  • 31 January - British Aerospace sells its 80% stake in Rover to BMW, leaving Britain without an independent volume carmaker.[2] It is envisaged that the new Rover Group will produce more than 1million cars per year worldwide, and will be Europe's seventh largest carmaker.
  • 1 February - Labour Party leader John Smith blasts the sale of the Rover Group, saying that it only satisfied British Aerospace's short-term need for cash. In contrast, Prime Minister John Major backs the takeover as giving the Rover Group excellent prospects for export markets and investment.
  • 7 February - Stephen Milligan, Conservative MP for Eastleigh in Hampshire, is found dead at his home in Chiswick, West London. Police describe his death as "suspicious"[3]
  • 11 February - Forensic tests reveal that MP Stephen Milligan died of asphyxiation and that his death was probably the result of an auto-erotic sex practice. [2]
  • 12 February–27 February - Great Britain and Northern Ireland compete at the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, and win 2 bronze medals.
  • 21 February - Honda sells its 20% stake of the Rover Group, allowing BMW to take full control. This marks the end of the 13-year venture between the two carmakers, although the Honda-based Rover 400 will still go into production next year, becoming the seventh and final product of the venture.
  • 24 February - Police in Gloucester begin excavations at 25 Cromwell Street -the home of 52-year-old builder Fred West.
  • 1 March - Fred West is charged with the murders of three women who remains were found buried at his house. One of the bodies is believed to be that of his daughter Heather, who was last seen alive in 1987 at the age of 16.[4]
  • 8 March, 10 and 13 - The IRA launch 3 successive mortar attacks on Heathrow Airport.[5]
  • 10 March - Following the recovery of further bodies at 25 Cromwell Street, Fred West is charged on eight counts of murder.
  • 12 March - The Church of England ordains its first female priests.[5]
  • 20 April - Unemployment has fallen to just over 2,500,000 - the lowest level in two years - as the economy continues to make a good recovery from the recession that ended a year ago.
  • 1 May - Manchester United retain the Premier League football title with a 2-1 away win over Ipswich Town putting them beyond the reach of their last remaining challengers Blackburn Rovers.
  • 6 May - The Channel Tunnel, a 51 km (31 mile) long rail tunnel beneath the English Channel at the Strait of Dover, officially opened.[5]
  • 12 May - John Smith, Leader of the Opposition dies suddenly and unexpectedly of a heart attack.
  • 14 May - Manchester United become only the sixth English football club (and the fourth this century) to have won the league title and FA Cup double as they triumph 4-0 over Chelsea in the FA Cup final.
  • 25 May - The Camelot Group consortium wins the contract to run the UK's first National Lottery.[6]
  • 31 May - Tony Blair and Gordon Brown have dinner at the Granita restaurant in Islington and allegedly make a deal on who will become the leader of the Labour Party, and ultimately, the next Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.
  • 2 June - Chinook crash on Mull of Kintyre: A Royal Air Force Chinook helicopter carrying more than 20 top intelligence experts crashes on the Mull of Kintyre, killing everyone on board.[7]
  • 13 July - Chris Sutton, 21-year-old Norwich City striker, becomes Britain's most expensive footballer in a £5million move to Blackburn Rovers. [3]
  • 21 July - Tony Blair wins the Labour Party leadership election defeating John Prescott and Margaret Beckett.[8]
  • 26 July - A bomb explodes outside the Israeli Embassy, injuring 14 people.[9]
  • 1 August - Norwich Central Library is destroyed in a fire.[10]
  • 18 August - The first MORI poll since Tony Blair became Labour Party leader gives him a massive boost in his ambition to become prime minister as his party scores at 56% and has a 33-point lead over the Tories, who are now just five points ahead of the Liberal Democrats. [4]
  • 26 August - Papworth Hospital in Cambridgeshire carries out a pioneering operation to give a man a battery-operated heart.[11]
  • 28 August - Sunday trading becomes legal in England and Wales for the first time.[12]
  • 31 August - The Provisional Irish Republican Army declares a ceasefire.[13]
  • September - Andrew Wiles announces the proof of Fermat's Last Theorem.
  • 2 September - Television entertainer Roy Castle dies of lung cancer two days after his 62nd birthday.
  • October - Rover Group launches the Rover 100 - a facelifted version of the Metro.
  • 10 October - With the economic recovery continuing at a strong rate, unemployment is now falling at twice the rate in Tory constituencies than in Labour constituencies, giving the Tories hope that they could win the next general election (which has to be held by May 1997) despite Labour having led the way in the opinion polls for virtually all of the two-and-a-half years since the last election.
  • 20 October - Cash-for-questions affair: The Guardian newspaper reports that two Conservative MPs, Neil Hamilton and Tim Smith, took bribes from Harrods chief Mohamed Al-Fayed to ask questions in the House of Commons.[14]
  • 31 October - The Duke of Edinburgh attends a ceremony in Israel where his late mother, Princess Alice of Battenberg is honoured as "Righteous among the Nations" for sheltering Jewish families from the Nazis in Athens, during World War II.
  • 16 November - Unemployment has fallen to under 2,500,000 for the first time since the end of 1991.
  • 19 November - The National Lottery is launched in Britain.[5]
  • December - Rover Group ends production of its long-running Maestro and Montego ranges, which were strong sellers during the 1980s but in recent years had been produced in lower volumes due to the success of models like the Rover 200.
  • 9 December - First meeting between the British government and Sinn Féin in more than 70 years.[5]
  • 13 December - Fred West is charged with the murders of 12 people who are believed to died between 1967 and 1987, including his daughter Heather. His wife Rose is charged with 10 of the murders, including that of Heather and her stepdaughter Charmaine, who is believed to have died in June 1971 at the age of eight.
  • 14 December - Moors Murderer Myra Hindley receives a letter from the Home Office that informs her of former Home Secretary David Waddington's decision (taken four years earlier) that she will spend the rest of her life in prison. Hindley, 52, was involving in the torture and murder of five children during the 1960s with her lover Ian Brady. She was convicted of murdering two children at her 1966 trial as well as being an accessory to the murder of a third, but admitted two more murders in 1986 and subsequently helped police uncover the body of her fourth victim. On the same day, Brady is also informed that he will remain incarcerated for the rest of his natural life.
  • 15 December - Tony Blair continues to enjoy dominance in the opinion polls as the latest MORI poll shows Labour support at an unprecedented 61%, putting them a massive 39 points ahead of the Tories. The Liberal Democrats have suffered a slump in popularity, gained just 13% of the vote in this poll compared to 20% a year ago. [5]
  • 28 December - Labour Party leader Tony Blair claims that 40% of the workforce have been unemployed at some time since 1989, although there has never been more than 10.6% of the workforce out of work at the same time since then.





  1. ^ ""Duchess of Kent joins Catholic church", BBC On This Day". 1994-01-14. Retrieved 2008-01-28.  
  2. ^ ""MPs condemn sale of Rover", BBC On This Day". 1994-02-01. Retrieved 2008-01-28.  
  3. ^ ""Police probe MP's suspicious death", BBC On This Day". 1994-02-08. Retrieved 2008-01-28.  
  4. ^ ""West charged as death toll mounts", BBC On This Day". 1994-03-01. Retrieved 2008-01-28.  
  5. ^ a b c d e Penguin Pocket On This Day. Penguin Reference Library. 2006. ISBN 0-141-02715-0.  
  6. ^ ""Camelot wins UK lottery race", BBC On This Day". 1994-05-25. Retrieved 2008-01-28.  
  7. ^ ""MI5 officers killed in helicopter crash", BBC On This Day". 1994-06-02. Retrieved 2008-01-28.  
  8. ^ ""Labour chooses Blair", BBC On This Day". 1994-07-21. Retrieved 2008-01-28.  
  9. ^ ""Israel's London embassy bombed", BBC On This Day". 1994-07-26. Retrieved 2008-01-28.  
  10. ^ ""Library fire wipes out historic records", BBC On This Day". 1994-08-01. Retrieved 2008-01-28.  
  11. ^ ""1994: Man gets 'bionic' heart", BBC On This Day". 1994-08-26. Retrieved 2008-03-01.  
  12. ^ ""Sunday trading legalised", BBC On This Day". 1994-08-28. Retrieved 2008-01-28.  
  13. ^ ""IRA declares 'complete' ceasefire", BBC On This Day". 1994-08-31. Retrieved 2008-01-28.  
  14. ^ "Tory MPs were paid to plant questions says Harrods chief The Guardian". October 20, 1994.,,536101,00.html. Retrieved 2008-01-28.  

See also



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