21st Century Britain timeline

21st century timeline, Britain, Brexit

Here is a timeline for 21st century Britain - the story so far...

2000
UK forces intervene in the civil war in Sierra Leone.
Parliament passes the Freedom of Information Act, granting public right of access to information held by public authorities, with certain limitations.
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2001
Foot and mouth crisis hits farmers.
The Eden Project opens in Cornwall.
Libyan intelligence agent, Abdelbaset al-Megrahi is found guilty of the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103.
9/11.  On 11th September, Islamic al-Qaeda terrorists hijacked four aircraft and flew them at targets in the USA. Two are flown into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York, a third into the Pentagon and a fourth crashes after passengers tackle the hijackers.  Almost 3,000 people are killed (67 of them British) and thousands more injured.
Prime Minister Tony Blair offers US President Bush British support for a campaign against international terrorism. The RAF joins in strikes against targets in Afghanistan. British troops are deployed as part of a NATO force.
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2002
Queen Elizabeth II celebrates her Golden Jubilee.
The last coal mine in Scotland closes.
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2003
The UK joins a US-led military invasion of Iraq, ostensibly to end the country’s support for terrorism and because it is alleged to have ‘weapons of mass destruction’.
England wins the Rugby World Cup, narrowly defeating Australia 20-17 in the final.
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2004
The Hutton Report, the result of an investigation into the suicide of government scientist David Kelly, clears the government of any wrongdoing.
Ten new states join the European Union - Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia.
Facebook is launched in the USA.
The Indian Ocean tsunami kills in excess of 200,000 people.
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2005
London bombings of 7/7 - 52 people are killed and about 700 injured in four Islamist suicide bomb attacks on London's transport network.
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2006
Russian defector Alexander Litvinenko is murdered in London having ingested radioactive polonium.  Suspicion later falls on ex-KGB agent Andrei Lugovoi, sparking a diplomatic row with Russia.
Daniel Craig stars as the latest James Bond in Casino Royale.
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2007
Gordon Brown replaces Tony Blair as Prime Minister and leader of the Labour Party.
Bulgaria and Romania join the European Union.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the 7th and final book in the series, is published.
The surviving members of Led Zeppelin perform their first full-length concert in 27 years at London’s O2 Arena.
Meanwhile – Apple launch the iPhone.
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2008
Global financial crisis plunges the UK into recession.
Meanwhile - Barack Obama becomes the first black, and the 44th, President of the United States.
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2009
Britain withdraws most of its troops from southern Iraq.
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2010
The general election in May leaves the Conservative Party as winners but without an overall majority in the House of Commons.  Conservative leader David Cameron forms the first coalition since the Second World War, with the Liberal Democrats led by Nick Clegg.
The coalition government announces large-scale public spending cuts aimed at reducing UK's budget deficit.
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2011
In a wider context – the Arab Spring - revolutions and protests in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and several other Arab countries.  The Syrian civil war begins.
Britain plays a prominent part in the international intervention in the conflict in Libya.
Prince William marries Kate Middleton.
The government announces a public inquiry, the Leveson Inquiry, into phone hacking and police bribery by now defunct the News of the World newspaper, and the culture and ethics of the British newspaper industry in general.
The killing of 29-year old Mark Duggan by police is a catalyst for widespread rioting and looting in many poorer areas of London, and in several other English cities.
In a wider context - Osama bin Laden is killed during a US raid.
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2012
HM the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
Britain hosts the hugely successful Summer Olympics and Paralympics.
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2013
British Army 
Drummer Lee Rigby is hacked to death in south London by two Islamic extremists.
The Duchess of Cambridge gives birth to a son George – heir to the throne after his grandfather, Charles, and father, William.
The House of Commons votes against UK military involvement in Syria.
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2014
Support surges for the UK Independence Party (UKIP) in local and European elections.
Thousands of yellow bikes appear in Yorkshire to celebrate the start of the 101st Tour de France.
In September, a referendum in Scotland rejects independence (cessation from the UK), with 55% opting to remain within the United Kingdom and 45% favouring departure.
Same-sex marriage becomes legal in England, Wales and Scotland.
The UK ends combat operations in Afghanistan.
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2015
At the general election in May, the Conservative Party win a majority – against the predictions of pollsters.  Its coalition partners, the Liberal Democrats, lose all except 8 seats.  UKIP wins nearly 4 million votes, but just 1 seat; and the Scottish National Party wins all but 3 seats in Scotland, becoming third largest party in parliament.
Queen Elizabeth II became the longest-reigning UK monarch ever.
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2016
Outsiders Leicester City Football Club win the Premier League.
In a national referendum in June, the UK narrowly voted to leave the European Union.  Prime Minister David Cameron resigns, and is succeeded by former home secretary, Theresa May.
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2017
Queen Elizabeth II celebrated her Sapphire Jubilee – 65 years.
On 29 March, the Prime Minister invoked Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union, beginning the UK’s withdrawal (nicknamed ‘Brexit’), from the European Union (EU).
Islamist Khalid Masood kills five people, including a police officer, and injured 45, driving a car along the pavement on Westminster Bridge and attempting to break into Parliament.
In May, a homemade bomb packed with shrapnel killed 23 people and injured more than 500 at Manchester Arena after a concert by the American singer Ariana Grande.
In June, three Islamic terrorists drove a van at people on London Bridge and subsequently rampaged through the area with knives. 8 were killed and 48 injured.  The terrorists were shot dead by police.
A disastrous fire at Grenfell Tower, a block of flats in North Kensington, London, in which 71 people died, highlights inadequate safety measures in tower blocks.
The June general election called by Prime Minister Theresa May, in the hope of increasing her majority, resulted in a narrow Conservative victory and a minority government supported by the Northern Irish Democratic Unionists.
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2018
In January, US President Trump abandons a visit to the UK, claiming he was upset about the sale of the former US embassy in Grosvenor Square and the cost of the new one in Vauxhall.
The UK’s second-largest construction company, Carillion, collapses with enormous debts and unfinished public sector contracts.
In February, the UK is battered by some of the worst weather in decades, nicknamed ‘the Beast from the East’.  17 people died.
Ex-Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia are poisoned with a nerve agent, novichok, in the historic city of Salisbury.  Britain blames Russia for the attack, sparking a diplomatic crisis. 153 Russian diplomats are expelled from 29 countries.
Political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica is exposed in March for gathering data from more than 50 million Facebook profiles without people's consent.
In April, Home Secretary Amber Rudd resigns in the wake of the Windrush scandal, in which people, mostly of Caribbean heritage, were illegally denied rights, or even deported from the UK.
On 19 May, Prince Henry Charles Albert David of Wales married US actress Rachel Meghan Markle in St George’s Chapel, Windsor.  They take the titles the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
Two Amesbury residents, Charlie Rowley and Dawn Sturgess, fell ill having been contaminated with the same nerve agent as the Skripals in March, from a discarded fake perfume bottle. Dawn Sturgess died on 8 July.
England somehow reached the semi-finals of the World Football Cup in Russia, but was defeated 2-1 by Croatia. France beat Croatia 4-2 in the final.
During the ongoing heat-wave, the Meteorological Office urges people to stay out of the sun.
A Trump baby blimp flies over London during the US President’s visit to Britain.
Several cabinet ministers resign in protest at the Prime Minister’s Brexit negotiations. Further resignations follow in November.
In December, Primer Minister Theresa May survived a vote of no confidence in her leadership, but her Brexit plan had still not been agreed by Parliament.

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