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1981 News Headlines

Our collection of 1981 newspaper articles feature some of the most captivating headlines of the year. Such memorable 1981 headlines include Ronald Reagan succeeding Jimmy Carter to become the 40th President of the United States, and Bob Marley’s death. These are covered in authentic newspapers chronicling the events as they happened. It was during this year that Rupert Murdoch expanded his media empire by buying The Times and The Sunday Times, Reagan was shot in the chest in an attempted assassination, and the first ever London Marathon attracted 7,500 participants. One of the most memorable events of this year was the marriage of Lady Diana Spencer to Prince Charles, where the whole world tuned in to watch the young couple wed. An authentic 1981 newspaper is a wonderful gift idea for anyone interested in history, or with a particular affinity with the year 1981.

DateEvent
20th January 1981Ronald Reagan succeeds Jimmy Carter as the 40th President of the United States. Minutes later, Iran releases the fifty-two Americans who had been held captive for 444 days, ending the Iran hostage crisis.
13th February 1981Rupert Murdoch buys The Times and The Sunday Times for £12 million.
10th March 1981Sir Geoffrey Howe announces the British budget, which raises taxes in the middle of a recession.
29th March 1981The first London Marathon is held with 7,500 runners.
30th March 1981U.S. President Ronald Reagan is shot in the chest outside a Washington D.C. hotel by John Hinckley Junior. Two police officers and Press Secretary James Brady are also wounded.
4th April 1981 Bucks Fizz wins the 1981 Eurovision Song Contest with the song, “Making Your Mind Up“.
11th April 1981Rioters in Brixton throw petrol bombs, attack police and loot shops.
5th May 1981Bobby Sands, Provisional Irish Republican Army volunteer and elected member of the House of Commons, dies aged twenty-seven while on hunger strike in HM Prison Maze.
11th May 1981Bob Marley, Jamaican singer and musician (b. 1945) dies.
13th May 1981Pope John Paul II is shot and nearly killed by Mehmet Ali Agca, a Turkish gunman, as he enters St. Peter's Square in Rome to address a general audience.
22nd May 1981Peter Sutcliffe is found guilty of being the Yorkshire Ripper. He is sentenced to life imprisonment on thirteen counts of murder and seven counts of attempted murder.
27th May 1981Liverpool FC wins the European Cup, beating Real Madrid 1-0 in Paris.
13th June 1981 At the Trooping the Colour ceremony in London, Marcus Sarjeant fires six blank shots at the Queen.
3rd July 1981The Toxteth riots begin in Liverpool after a mob saves a youth from being arrested. Shortly afterward, the Chapeltown riots start in Leeds after increased racial tension.
29th July 1981Lady Diana Spencer marries Charles, Prince of Wales.
24th August 1981Mark David Chapman is sentenced to twenty years to life in prison, after being convicted of murdering John Lennon in Manhattan eight months earlier.
14th September 1981 Margaret Thatcher appoints Cecil Parkinson as Chairman of the Conservative Party.
29th September 1981Bill Shankly, former Liverpool football manager (b. 1914) dies.
15th October 1981The heavy metal band Metallica forms.
1st November 1981Antigua and Barbuda gain independence from the United Kingdom.
8th December 1981 Arthur Scargill becomes President-elect of the National Union of Mineworkers.
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A Newspaper From

Shown as an example of papers printed at this time (click to enlarge).