That Was the Year That Was - 2001

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    11 September 2001 - it was the day that changed everything 11 September – Viewers around the world witness a terrorist attack on the United States, and the collapse of the Twin Towers in New York City, live on television. Most broadcasters abandon regular programming to provide up to date coverage of unfolding events. It was, it is, the biggest story of our times, the greatest hatred of our times: as the commentators said then, in words that turned out, unusually, to be far from hyperbolic, it was the day that changed everything. The north tower of the World Trade Center was hit at 8.48am Eastern Standard Time by American Airlines Flight 11, a Boeing 767 with 92 passengers on board, hijacked from Boston. The south tower was hit 15 minutes later by United Airlines Flight 175, also hijacked from Boston. At 10.05, the south tower collapsed. At 10.29, the north tower joined it. By this time AA Flight 77 had been flown into the Pentagon, crashing at 9.40. At 10.03, just before the south tower's collapse, United Airlines Flight 93, bound from Newark to San Francisco, crashed in Pennsylvania: four passengers are understood to have overcome the hijackers and forced it down. In Nablus, they danced. Latest figures have 2,508 confirmed dead in New York, and 484 missing, 77 of the total being UK nationals. In Washington, 125 have been confirmed dead. The slaughter was carried out by 19 hijackers, led by Mohamed Atta. On 10 January, an Egyptian flying from Madrid to Miami was questioned for an hour by immigration officials, their suspicions raised by the fact he wanted to take flying lessons, even though he was entering on a tourist, not a student, visa. After being interviewed by a second agent, according to the Miami Herald, he was released. His name was Mohamed Atta. The first week was one of simple shock at so many dead, and the manner of their death. Hardly a voice was raised, then, against American foreign policy; even those used to assailing the superpower for the damage it had thoughtlessly wrought elsewhere - the sanctions destroying the lives of so many children in Iraq, the thousands of civilians killed by Israel - grew sombre and silent while they tried to grasp the scale of what had happened. Here, Tony Blair postponed his TUC speech, and William Hague postponed the Tory leadership announcement (Iain Duncan Smith won, by the way). Parliament was recalled within days. Attacks began on Muslims in Britain. Tony Blair flew to Berlin, Paris, Washington, New York and Brussels, and spoke to more than two dozen heads of state, winning support for a broad coalition backing what George Bush had called a 'war against terror', and trying to offer reassurances, along the way, that the West did not want a war against Islam, simply against terror. As eyes focused on Osama bin Laden , al-Qaeda and the Taliban, Bill Clinton admitted he had ordered bin Laden's assassination five years earlier but US intelligence - now being shown to be hopelessly flawed - hadn't been able to find him. America suffered, hugely. A 'new patriotism' began, with flags being worn throughout the nation: some retreated even further into insularity but others began wondering just what it had done to the world to deserve 11 September. In Britain, and elsewhere in Europe, there awoke fresh interest in what Islam was about, and what had been going on in the Middle East all that time (on the other channel, while we were watching Big Brother 2). There was talk of attacks on London. 'I'll nuke Britain, says evil Bin Laden,' shouted a Daily Express headline, prompting Alastair Campbell to wonder whether the real news we were getting just wasn't exciting enough. Resilient New York began, slowly, to recover. People went out. Couples renewed their vows, divorce rates fell and firemen became the most desired sexual partners in the city. Some humour returned. As the satirical magazine The Onion had it: 'A shattered nation longs to care about stupid bullshit once more.' But New Yorkers were still wandering past, and smelling, the grimmest piece of earth on the planet, Ground Zero. On 20 December, 100 days on, they were still pulling out the dead. At the Labour Party conference Tony Blair spoke of healing the world but also told the Taliban to 'surrender the terrorists or surrender power'. The speech was hailed in some quarters as Churchillian; it sounded, for once, truly and wholeheartedly meant. UK News Early on the morning of 1 January, as blizzards scoured our fields and coasts, they closed and bolted the doors on the wretched Dome for the last time, but in vain; like Quatermass's Pit, its curse had one more to claim... Prince Charles fell off a horse, broke his shoulder and called himself a 'plonker'. Princess Margaret was rumoured to have had another stroke. James Bulger's killers, Robert Thomson and Jon Venables, due for imminent release, won court protection to have their new identities concealed - to predictable outrage. The Post Office changed its name to Consignia; the ridicule died a little when it was remembered that daft, expensive rebrandings almost always herald massive lay-offs: see December. Outside the FA's headquarters in London, a man called Ray Egan protested in full John Bull outfit, insisting that the appointment of Sven-Goran Eriksson would mean the death of English football. Streakers were introduced to Subbuteo. The year began badly, again, for the NHS, when piles of bodies were shown being stored 'temporarily' in a chapel of rest in Bedford. In Cuba, sweetly enough, an excited Fidel Castro slipped backstage to ask for the autographs of the Manic Street Preachers. In England, Eminem was banned from rapping at Sheffield University. Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, Hollywood's goldenest couple, announced they were to split, and Naomi Campbell announced she was to launch a campaign for better rights for celebrities. Edward and Sophie Wessex began their own annus horribilis by being pictured drinking chummily with Jorge Haider, leader of Austria's Freedom Party. Tony Blair went to Washington and, apparently, bonded with George Bush: asked what they had in common, Bush replied: 'We both use Colgate toothpaste.' The Royal Mail, or whatever it was called by then, refused to deliver letters to a 'disgusting' estate in Portsmouth. Hear'Say, the fabricated band which had enthralled Popstars viewers since the turn of the year, burst on to Top of the Pops with a winning number entitled 'You Really Don't Need This Information, Trust Me, And It's Going To Take A Minute Of My Life Which I Won't Get Back To Look It Up', and the increasingly extraordinary Lynda Lee-Potter described pretty singer Kym as 'undeniably too big around the middle'. The Government reluctantly ordered the indiscriminate slaughter of all pigs, sheep and goats around any outbreak of foot and mouth in Dumfries and Galloway and in Cumbria. The Army was put on alert, but warned it might not have enough bullets to kill all the sheep. By the end of the month, a vast grave had been dug in Cumbria, containing 500,000 slaughtered beasts; the chief scientific adviser was warning that unless diseased victims were killed within 24 hours half the animals in Britain might die; Tony Blair had authorised instant slaughter of any livestock, sick or healthy, within three miles of an outbreak; and vaccination was explored, despite being called the last resort only four weeks earlier. Blair also decided to postpone the election, despite the fact that 3 May had been the expected date for two years. As the pandemic grew ever worse, France, Germany and Spain branded Britain the 'sick island' of Europe. The Wall Street Journal joined in, telling us: 'One in five adults in the land of Shakespeare is functionally illiterate. The public services on which the country depends for its long-term economic health are in a state of extreme decay. The healthcare system belongs on life support.' The Real IRA detonated a bomb at the BBC's news centre in White City. Ten people died in the Selby rail crash when a Land-Rover, its driver asleep at the wheel, slipped on to the line. Perry Wacker, the driver of a lorry in which 58 Chinese illegal immigrants died, was jailed for 14 years. A man died in a swimming pool belonging to Michael Barrymore. Nights of violence in Bradford followed a Hindu wedding. In Oldham, gangs of young Asians were accused of indiscriminate racial attacks on whites, particularly after Walter Chamberlain, 76, was found with broken cheekbones. Tony Blair attempted to fight 'yob culture' by offering free CDs to kids who didn't mug people. John Prescott threw a punch... but that was the only impact the general election seemed to have on much of the nation. A survey found that 12 per cent of Scots had never washed their bedlinen. As the number of slaughtered livestock passed three million, Britain voted. Just. Labour won another landslide - 413 seats to the Tories' 166 - but the turnout was the lowest since 1918. Only three in five voted, and only one in four people voted Labour. Blair congratulated himself by taking a pay rise, from £116,000 to £163,000, consigning Robin Cook to effective oblivion as Leader of the House, and writing a Queen's Speech which promised greater private involvement in public services. Lord Cullen's report on the Paddington rail crash blamed Railtrack for 'lamentable failure' and 'institutional paralysis'. James Bulger's killers were released , to vows of revenge from Liverpool if ever their identities are discovered. Four boys were charged with the murder of Damilola Taylor. Oh, I forgot. Hague resigned. Liverpool Airport was renamed John Lennon Airport, and a £3m fountain was announced for Hyde Park to commemorate Diana. There were 10 hours of riots in Bradford, after tensions erupted following an Anti-Nazi League demonstration. More than 100 people were injured and the Asian and white communities were pronounced 'dangerously fragmented'. Goran Ivanisevic, only in the competition on a wild card, beat Pat Rafter in the most thrilling Wimbledon men's final of recent years. He made Croatia's day, and ruined that of Australia, who were in the process that weekend of beating England in the first Ashes Test and hammering the Lions in Melbourne. 'The one thing you have to say about modern England cricket teams,' said the Melbourne Age, 'is that they know how to lose.' Jeffrey Archer was jailed for four years after seven fraught weeks of trial for perjury. He was taken to Belmarsh, after being allowed a few hours' freedom to attend his mother's funeral. Paramount Pictures, about to make a 'prequel' to Star Trek, was advised by British colleagues to drop plans to call Kirk's predecessor Captain Jeffrey Archer. Charles fell off his horse again and went to hospital. The Queen Mother celebrated her 101st birthday, after receiving a full blood transfusion. Princess Margaret appeared paralysed down one side and almost wholly blind. Sophie and Edward, apparently perturbed by criticism that they weren't doing enough public duties to merit their official £141,000, went 'on strike' . A helicopter crashed near Paddington after picking up a man injured by a train after walking on the line after he'd crashed his car on a railway bridge. Concorde flew again, carrying Tony Blair to Washington where he was hailed once more, famously revered and respected now by statesmen everywhere: he seemed almost as popular as Harry Potter, whose first film opened to universal delight. Revered except in Downing Street, where Gordon Brown had apparently started swearing at him as the relationship hit a new low, partly over contradictory hints on the Euro. George Harrison died of lung cancer; the world paid tribute, particularly in Liverpool, where thousands lined the streets - even though half of them weren't even in the Beatles. The jailing of Roy Whiting, found guilty of killing Sarah Payne in 2000, led to renewed calls for the so-called 'Sarah's Law', giving the public access to lists of local sex offenders; the News of the World named and shamed once more. And the Mirror took it upon itself to lead the charge against Lee Bowyer and Jonathan Woodgate, the Leeds players involved in the attack on Sarfraz Najeib, who walked free of all but the most minor charges, to general and extended disgust. Consignia, unsurprisingly, announced 30,000 lay-offs. Yachtsman Peter Blake was murdered by pirates in the Amazon. David Blunkett suggested immigrants should make more of an effort to learn English. The Bank of Ireland gave away a quarter of a million punts to one customer when it mistook euros for pesetas. As the year ended, and we braced for the next round of war, or terrorism, eyes looked back to America. In the end, the death toll from the Twin Towers was less than was first feared; there were 20,000 people working there when the planes hit, and it is remarkable how many did survive. But that's not, really, the point. We all watched those about to die begin jumping from windows; we all remain haunted by the shape of their last thoughts. That, truly, was terror, never to be forgotten: the terror inspired by the knowledge that one of the most powerful things a human being can do is rid himself of his humanity. Long after bin Laden is gone, long after the rest of this grim year is forgotten, that will remain. 2001 Timeline 5 January – A report by the Department of Health suggests that Dr Harold Shipman, convicted of 15 murders a year ago, may have killed more than 300 patients since the 1970s. 8 January - The High Court rules that the identities and whereabouts of the two killers of James Bulger are to be kept secret for the rest of their lives. Robert Thompson and Jon Venables, both now aged 19, are expected to be released from custody later this year. Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 2000 comes into effect, reducing the age of consent for male homosexual sexual acts to that for heterosexual and lesbian acts, sixteen (seventeen in Northern Ireland). 9 January – Sven-Göran Eriksson begins his job as manager of the England football team six months ahead of schedule, having resigned from his previous job as Lazio manager. He had signed a five-year contract with The Football Association on 30 October 2000 to succeed Kevin Keegan. 12 January – Marie Therese Kouao and Carl Manning are sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of Kouao's niece Victoria Climbié, who died in 2000 after suffering horrific abuse and neglect at the hands of the couple in their London home. Victoria (aged eight) had been living with the pair since her parents sent her to England to receive a good education. 24 January – Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Peter Mandelson resigns from the cabinet for the second time. 25 January – After briefly slipping behind the Conservatives in an opinion poll four months ago, Labour are looking all set for victory in the forthcoming general election as they score 49% in the latest MORI poll and open up a 20-point lead over their rivals. 31 January – The Scottish Court in the Netherlands convicts a Libyan and acquits another for their part in the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 which crashed in Lockerbie in 1988. Al Amin Khalifah Fhimah (aged 44) is cleared, but Abdelbaset Ali Mohamed Al Megrahi is found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonment with a recommended minimum term of 20 years. 19 February – Foot and mouth crisis begins. 25 February – Liverpool beat Birmingham City on penalties after a 1–1 draw in the Football League Cup final – the first cup final to be played at Millennium Stadium, Cardiff, since Wembley closed for redevelopment. 28 February – A rail crash near Selby kills 10 people. 8 March – The wreckage of Donald Campbell's speedboat Bluebird K7 is raised from the bottom of Coniston Water in Cumbria, 34 years after Campbell was killed in an attempt to break the world water speed record. 15 March – Donald Campbell's body is recovered from Lake Coniston, 34 years after he died in an attempt to break the land water speed record. 17 March – Eden Project opens to the public near St Austell, Cornwall; conceived by Tim Smit with design by Nicholas Grimshaw & Partners. 18 March – Claire Marsh (aged 18) becomes the youngest woman in Britain to be convicted of rape after pinning down a woman who was raped by a pair of teenagers in west London. She is sentenced to seven years in prison, while her accomplices (aged 15 and 18) are jailed for five years. 5 April – Perry Wacker, a Dutch lorry driver, is jailed for 14 years for the manslaughter of 58 Chinese illegal immigrants who were found suffocated in his lorry at Dover ferry port in June last year. 15 April – Manchester United win the FA Premier League title for the third season in succession, and the seventh time in nine seasons. 23 April - Jane Andrews, a former personal assistant to Sarah, Duchess of York, goes on trial accused of murdering her fiancé Thomas Cressman. Manchester United pay a British record fee of £19million for Ruud van Nistelrooy, the 24-year-old PSV Eindhoven and Netherlands national football team striker who had been due to join the club last year until the transfer was put on hold by injury. 29 April – Census of population in the United Kingdom. 1 May – An anti-capitalist demonstration in London, part of worldwide protests, turns violent. 4 May – The government relaxes its sanctions designed to tackle the foot and mouth crisis after more than two months. 12 May – Liverpool win the FA Cup Final when two Michael Owen goals in the final minutes of the game give them a 2–1 win over Arsenal in the final at the Millennium Stadium. 15 May – Medication prices fall as a result of a court ruling which puts an end to the drug industry's price-fixing policies. 16 May – Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott punches a protester who threw an egg at him in Rhyl. Jane Andrews is sentenced to life imprisonment after being found guilty of murdering Thomas Cressman. Liverpool win the UEFA Cup – their first European trophy for 17 years – with a 5–4 win over Spanish side Deportivo Alavés. 1 June – Official opening of Cardiff Bay Barrage. 7 June – General Election: Labour Party attains a second successive General Election landslide victory. Among the new entrants to parliament is 34-year-old Tory David Cameron who retains the Witney seat in Oxfordshire for the party. Among the retirements is Edward Heath, the former Conservative prime minister, who at 84 was the oldest member of the last parliament and also its longest serving member having first being elected to parliament in 1950. 8 June – William Hague announces his resignation as Conservative Party leader after four 17 June – Cardinal Winning, head of the Roman Catholic church in Scotland, dies of a heart attack aged 76. 22 June – Home Secretary David Blunkett announces that Robert Thompson and Jon Venables, convicted at the age of 11 of murdering toddler James Bulger on Merseyside, are to be released on life licence later this year after the Parole Board recommended their release after eight years in custody. 25 June – A race riot breaks out in Burnley, with more than 200 white and Asian youths being involved in brawling, vandalism and arson. 29 June – The government announces plans to build a £3million fountain in memory of Diana, Princess of Wales at Hyde Park, London. July – MG Rover launches a new range of MG-badged performance variants of its Rover family cars. 2 July – Barry George is sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of the television presenter Jill Dando, who was killed in Fulham, London, on 26 April 1999. George is acquitted at a retrial in 2008. 7 July – Two people are stabbed in race riots in Bradford, West Yorkshire. 9 July – First episode of television sitcom The Office shown on BBC Two. 12 July – The British transfer record in broken for the third time in eight months when Manchester United pay Italian club Lazio £28.1million for Argentine midfielder Juan Sebastian Veron. 16 July – The Labour government suffers its first parliamentary defeat over the sacking of Gwyneth Dunwoody and Donald Anderson as chairs of select committees on transport and foreign affairs. 18 July – Philip John Smith is sentenced to life imprisonment after pleading guilty to the murders of three women in Birmingham in November last year. 19 July – Politician and novelist Jeffrey Archer is sentenced to four years in prison for perjury and perverting the course of justice. 20 July – Rioting breaks out in Brixton, London, following the fatal shooting Derek Bennett, a 29-year-old black man, by armed police in the area. 27 people are arrested and three police officers are injured. 29 July – A victim support group condemns a reported £11,000 payout by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority to the parents of murdered Sarah Payne as "derisory". 4 August – Oxford United move into their new 12,500-seat Kassam Stadium near the city's Blackbird Leys estate. Work on the stadium had started in 1996 but halted the following year due to the club's financial problems. The stadium will initially have three stands but a fourth stand could be built in the future to take the capacity to 15,000. 7 August – The government takes an unprecedented step with the £27million nationalisation of a private hospital near Harley Street in London. 10 August – Former Conservative Party MP Neil Hamilton and his wife Christine are arrested on suspicion of sexual assault. 11 August – Southampton F.C. move into their new 32,000-seat St Mary's Stadium. 16 August – Former royal butler Paul Burrell charged with the theft of items belonging to the late Diana, Princess of Wales; the prosecution subsequently collapses. 31 August – Neil and Christine Hamilton are cleared in connection with the sexual assault allegations. 5 September – Peter Bray completes the first crossing of the Atlantic Ocean in a kayak. 7 September – One million children in over 3,000 schools participate in an experiment to discover if it is possible to create earthquakes by all jumping off chairs. 10 September – The Bank of Scotland and the Halifax merge to form HBOS plc. 11 September - 11 September terrorist attacks: by al-Qaeda upon the United States of America. 67 UK nationals perish in the attacks, the largest loss of life from any nation other than the United States where the attacks take place. One Canada Square, the UK's tallest building, and the London Stock Exchange are evacuated following the attacks in the United States. Prime Minister Tony Blair cancels a speech he was due to give to the TUC, and pledges to "stand shoulder to shoulder" with the United States. 13 September - The Queen orders the Changing of the Guard ceremony to be paused for a two-minute silence, followed by the playing of the American national anthem, in tribute to the victims of the terrorist attacks two days earlier. Iain Duncan Smith becomes leader of the Conservative Party after winning the leadership election. 14 September – National memorial service held at St Paul's Cathedral for the victims of the terrorist attacks. 17 September – Gateshead Millennium Bridge opens to the public. 21 September – Teenager Ross Parker murdered in racially motivated attack by Muslim Asian gang in Peterborough. 6 October – The England national football team achieves automatic qualification for next summer's World Cup in Japan and South Korea with a 2–2 draw against Greece at Old Trafford, thanks to an injury time equaliser by captain David Beckham. 7 October – The United States of America's Armed-forces invade Afghanistan. Submarines of the British Royal Navy participate using Tomahawk cruise missiles. 23 October – Provisional Irish Republican Army announces that it has begun to decommission its weapons. 25 October – The British Crime Survey reveals that crime rates are at their lowest levels since 1981. 9 November – Debut of the film Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone in London. 12 November – Greek authorities hold 12 British plane-spotters on charges of spying. 22 November – The Labour government's upturn in popularity continues as the latest MORI poll puts them 31 points ahead of the Conservatives on 56%. 24 November – The 2001 Kangaroo tour concludes with the Australia national rugby league team defeating Great Britain in the 3rd and deciding test match of the Ashes series. December – The unsuccessful Nissan Primera P12 goes into production with Nissan Motor Manufacturing UK. 10 December - V. S. Naipaul wins the Nobel Prize in Literature "for having united perceptive narrative and incorruptible scrutiny in works that compel us to see the presence of suppressed histories". Timothy Hunt and Paul Nurse win the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine jointly with Leland H. Hartwell "for their discoveries of key regulators of the cell cycle". 11 December – The Post Office announces that up to 30,000 postal workers could be made redundant over the next 18 months as part of a £1.2billion cost-cutting package. 12 December – Roy Whiting is found guilty at Lewes Crown Court of the murder of Sarah Payne, who was found dead near Pulborough, West Sussex, in July last year. It is then revealed that Whiting already had a conviction for abducting and molesting an eight-year-old girl in 1995. The trial judge sentences Whiting, a 42-year-old former mechanic, to life imprisonment and says that it is a rare case in which he would recommend to the appropriate authorities that life should mean life. It is only the 24th time that such a recommendation has been made in British legal history. 13 December – Lynette Lithgow, 51-year-old former BBC newsreader, is found murdered with her mother and brother at the family home in Trinidad. 21 December – The Metropolitan Police storm a cargo ship in the English Channel fearing that it may contain terrorist material. 22 December – British-born terrorist, Richard Reid, attempts to blow up American Airlines Flight 63 from Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris to Miami International Airport, using explosives hidden in his shoes. Conservatoire for Dance and Drama, a national higher education institution, is established, the founding affiliates being the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and the London Contemporary Dance School. The Red-billed Chough recolonises Cornwall after an absence of 50 years. First osprey breed in England in recent times. The proportion of people living in owner-occupied homes in England reaches an all-time peak of 72.5%. A record of nearly 2.5 million new cars are sold in Britain this year, with the Ford Focus being Britain's best selling car for the third year in a row. Vauxhall maintains its second place behind Ford for sales, while the likes of Citroen, Peugeot, Renault and Volkswagen also enjoy strong sales. MG Rover sales, however, fall to a disappointing total of below 100,000. Television BBC One 9 January – Judge John Deed (2001–2007) 26 March – So What Now? (2001) 22 September – The Saturday Show (2001–2005) 2 November – Friday Night with Jonathan Ross (2001–2010) BBC Two 9 July – The Office (2001–2003) 5 October – Band of Brothers (2001) 26 October – Robot Wars Extreme sequel to Robot Wars (2001–2003) 12 November – The Kumars (2001–2006 BBC, 2014–present Sky) 29 November – What Not to Wear (2001–2007) ITV 21 May – Survivor (2001–2002) 6 June – Real Crime (2001–present) 18 August - The Goal Rush (2001–2003) The Premiership (2001–2004) 6 October – Pop Idol (2001–2003) 14 October – 2DTV (2001–2004) Channel 4 20 January – Popworld (2001–2007) 22 January – As If (2001–2004) 9 March – Celebrity Big Brother (2001–present) September – Model Behaviour (2001–2002) 26 November – Richard & Judy (2001–2008) BRIT Awards The 2001 BRIT Awards winners were: Best soundtrack: "American Beauty" British album: Coldplay – "Parachutes" British breakthrough act: a1 British dance act: Fatboy Slim British female solo artist: Sonique British group: Coldplay British male solo artist: Robbie Williams British single: Robbie Williams – "Rock DJ" British video: Robbie Williams – "Rock DJ" International breakthrough act: Kelis International female: Madonna International group: U2 International male: Eminem Outstanding contribution: U2 Pop act: Westlife
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    Resource type: Image
    Added by: Peter Smith
    Last modified: 6 years, 3 months ago
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    Picture Taken: 2015-06-02T09:23:42
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