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IN THE NEWS
TOUR OF THE MONTH
ON THIS DAY IN LONDON
23rd April 1959 1st heliport in Britain opens in London
23rd April 1925 1st London performance of operetta Fasquita staged
23rd April 1881 Gilbert and Sullivan's opera Patience produced in London
23rd April 1775 Artist J.M.W. Turner was born in Covent Garden, London.
23rd April 1705 Richard Steele's Tender Husband, premieres in London
23rd April 1702 The Coronation of Anne I in Westminster Abbey.
23rd April 1685 The Coronation of James II (and VII of Scotland) in Westminster Abbey.
23rd April 1661 English king Charles II crowned in London
23rd April 1661 The Coronation of Charles II in Westminster Abbey.
Buster Edwards died here
The site of the death of one of the key great train robbers.
Location: Greet Street, Southwark
Description: This is where great train robber Buster (Ronald) Edwards died from hanging himself from a girder. This was his garage for his flower stall he operated near Waterloo Station.
Buster was one of more than a dozen accomplices involved in the robbery, and he was played by Phil Collins in the 1988 movie, Buster.
By tampering with signal lights, the robbers halted a night mail train at an isolated spot in Buckinghamshire in southern England. Buster clubbed the engineer and made off with bags containing 1,500,000 in used British banknotes. Most of the robbers were captured but only a quarter of the money was recovered.
Afterwards, he took his share of the loot and made his way, with his family, to Mexico. But the money dwindled, and they grew homesick and in 1966, they returned to London. Buster surrendered to police and was charged with participation in the robbery.
Later that year he was called a master criminal at his trial, convicted and sentenced to 15 years in prison. He was the 14th person to be convicted in the case. In 1964, 13 men received prison sentences of up to 30 years for various roles in the robbery. The prosecution was aided by the discovery of fingerprints at a farm the gang had used.
Mr. Edwards was released from jail early, in 1975, and had a flower stall at Waterloo Station until his death.