Epsom Derby

The Derby Stakes the Investec Derby, popularly known as the Derby is a Group 1 flat horse race in England open to three-year-old colts and fillies. It is run at Epsom Downs Racecourse in Surrey over a distance of one mile, four furlongs and 6 yards, on the first Saturday of June each year, it is Britain's richest horse race, the most prestigious of the five Classics. It is sometimes referred to as the "Blue Riband" of the turf; the race serves as the middle leg of the Triple Crown, preceded by the 2000 Guineas and followed by the St Leger. Owners try to have their horses win all three races any more, as it is hard on the horses; the name "Derby" has become synonymous with great races all over the world, as such has been borrowed many times, notably by the Kentucky Derby in the United States. The Derby run at Epsom is the original and in Great Britain is invariably referred to as "the Derby", it has a large worldwide TV audience. The Stanley family, Earls of Derby, had a long history of horse-racing, James Stanley, 7th Earl of Derby, who gained the Lordship of Mann in 1627, instituted horse-racing on the Langness Peninsula on the Isle of Man, donating a cup for what became known as the "Manx Derby".

The Derby originated at a celebration following the first running of the Oaks Stakes in 1779. A new race was planned, it was decided that it should be named after either the host of the party, the 12th Earl of Derby, or one of his guests, Sir Charles Bunbury. According to legend the decision was made by the toss of a coin, but it is probable that Bunbury, the Steward of the Jockey Club, deferred to his host; the inaugural running of the Derby was held on Thursday 4 May 1780. It was won by a colt owned by Sir Charles Bunbury, who collected prize money of £ 1,065 15s; the first four runnings were contested over 1 mile, but this was amended to the current distance of 1½ miles in 1784. Lord Derby achieved his first success with a horse called Sir Peter Teazle; the starting point of the race was moved twice during the 19th century. The first move, suggested by Lord George Bentinck, was in 1848, the second was in 1872, it was discovered in 1991 that the exact length of the race was one mile, four furlongs and 10 yards.

The Derby was run on a Thursday in late May or early June, depending on when Easter occurred. In 1838 the race was moved to a Wednesday to fit in with the railways' timetables, but still followed the moveable feast of Easter. In the 20th century, the race was run on the first Wednesday in June from 1900 until 1995, not including 1915 to 1918, when it was on a Tuesday. During the Second World War, from 1942 until 1945 the race was run on a Saturday, as it was in the post-war years of 1947 to 1950 and again in 1953. In 1995 the day was changed from the first Wednesday in June to the first Saturday, since all the races have taken place on that day; the Derby has been run at Epsom in all years except during the world wars. From 1915 to 1918 and from 1940 to 1945, the Derby was run at Newmarket; these races are known as the'New Derby'. The Derby has inspired many similar events around the world. European variations include the Derby Italiano, the Deutsches Derby, the Irish Derby and the Prix du Jockey Club.

Several races in the United States include the "Derby" name, including the oldest, the Kentucky Derby. Other national equivalents include the Australian Derby, the New Zealand Derby, the Tokyo Yūshun. For many years the Derby was run on a Wednesday or a Thursday and on the day huge crowds would come from London, not only to see the race but to enjoy other entertainment. By the time that Charles Dickens visited Epsom Downs to view the race in the 1850s, entertainers such as musicians and conjurers plied their trades and entertained the crowds; the crowded meeting was the subject of a painting by William Powell Frith painted in the 1858 and titled The Derby Day. In the 1870s, the steam-driven rides were introduced, they were located at the Tattenham Corner end of the grounds and the fair was on for ten days and entertained hundreds of thousands. During the latter half of the 20th century, Derby Day became less popular and the race was moved from Wednesday to Saturday in 1995 the hope of reviving high attendance.

As the number of people attending the fair dwindled in the face of competition for attention and changing tastes, its length was reduced from 10 days to three or four. Investec became the sponsor of the Derby in 2009, the current sponsorship deal runs until 2022; the race was backed by Ever Ready and Vodafone. The 1952 drama film Derby Day, directed by Herbert Wilcox and starring Michael Wilding and Anna Neagle, is set around The Derby. Epsom Derby is referenced in the recent popular BBC television series Peaky Blinders, set in the 20th century. A Winning distances are shown in lengths or shorter. 1805: One of the horses was brought down by a spectator. 1825: Middleton never raced before or after winning the Derby. 1838: Amato never raced before or after winning the Derby. 1844: The original winner Running Rein was disqualified as he was an ineligible four-year-old horse named Maccabeus. 1881: Iroquois became the first

State of Burma

The State of Burma was a puppet state of the Empire of Japan, created in 1943 during the Japanese occupation of Burma in World War II. During the early stages of World War II, the Empire of Japan invaded British Burma to obtain raw materials, to close off the Burma Road, a primary link for aid and munitions to the Chinese Nationalist forces of Chiang Kai-shek, fighting the Japanese for several years in the Second Sino-Japanese War; the Japanese Fifteenth Army under Lieutenant General Shojiro Iida overran Burma from January – May 1942. The Japanese had assisted the formation of the Burma Independence Army, which aided the Japanese during their invasion; the BIA formed a provisional government in some areas of the country in the spring of 1942, but there were differences within the Japanese leadership over the future of Burma. While Colonel Suzuki encouraged the BIA to form a provisional government, the Japanese military leadership had never formally accepted such a plan and the Japanese government held out only vague promises of independence after the end of the war.

However, a Burmese Executive Administration was established in Rangoon on 1 August 1942 with the aim of creating a civil administration to manage day-to-day administrative activities subordinate to the Japanese military administration. The head of the provisional administration was Dr. Ba Maw, a noted lawyer and political prisoner under the British; as the war situation turned against the Japanese, the Japanese government decided that Burma and the Philippines would become independent as part of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere, contrary to the original plan that independence only be granted after the completion of the war. Japanese Prime Minister Hideki Tōjō promised that independence for Burma would be granted within a year from 28 January 1943, with the condition that Burma declare war on the United Kingdom and the United States; the Japanese government felt that this would give the Burmese a real stake in an Axis victory in the Second World War, creating resistance against possible re-colonization by the western powers, increased military and economic support from Burma for the Japanese war effort.

A Burma Independence Preparatory Committee chaired by Ba Maw was formed 8 May 1943 with a wide variety of respected members. On 1 August 1943, Burma was proclaimed the independent State of Burma and the Japanese military government for Burma was dissolved; the new state declared war on the United Kingdom and the United States and concluded a Treaty of Alliance with Japan. Ba Maw became "Naingandaw Adipadi" of Burma with wide powers; the first cabinet of the State of Burma consisted of: Ba Maw, Prime Minister Thakin Mya, Deputy Prime Minister Ba Win, Minister of Home Affairs Thakin Nu, Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr. Thein Maung, Minister of Finance General Aung San, Minister of Defence Thein Maung, Minister of Justice Hla Min, Minister of Education and Health Thakin Than Tun, Minister of Agriculture U Mya, Minister of Commerce and Industry Thakin Lay Maung, Minister of Communications and Irrigation Bandula U Sein, Minister of Welfare and Publicity Tun Aung, Minister of Co-Operation with Japan Thakin Lun Baw, Public Works Recovery MinisterOn 25 September 1943, as promised, Japan ceded all of the Shan states to Burma except for the part east of the Salween River i.e. Kengtung and Mongpan, given to Thailand.

Ba Maw attended the Greater East Asia Conference in Tokyo from 5–6 November 1943. Though now nominally independent, the power of the State of Burma to exercise its sovereignty was circumscribed by wartime agreements with Japan; the Imperial Japanese Army maintained a large presence and continued to act arbitrarily, despite Japan no longer having official control over Burma. During 1943 and 1944, the Burma National Army made contacts with other political groups inside Burma, including the Communist Party of Burma, operating underground. A popular front organization called the Anti-Fascist Organisation was formed with Thakin Soe as the leader. Through the communists and the Japanese-sponsored Arakan Defence Army, the Burmese were able to make contact with the British Force 136 in India; the initial contacts were always indirect. Force 136 was able to make contacts with members of the BNA's Karen unit in Rangoon. In December 1944, the AFO contacted the Allies, indicating their readiness to defect to the Allied cause by launching a national uprising which would include the forces of BNA.

However, this was opposed by the British, who considering the timing to be unfavorable, who had considerable reservations about supporting the BNA. The first BNA-led uprising against the Japanese occurred early in 1945 in central Burma. On 27 March 1945, the remainder of the BNA paraded in Rangoon and marched out ostensibly to assist the Japanese army in the battles raging in Central Burma against invading Allied forces. Instead, the BNA declared war on the Japanese. Aung San and others subsequently began negotiations with Lord Mountbatten and joined the Allies as the Patriotic Burmese Forces. Without the support of the BNA, the government of the State of Burma collapsed, Ba Maw fled via Thailand to Japan, where he was captured that year and was held in Sugamo Prison, until 1946. Japanese occupation of Burma Saharat Thai Doem Burma Independence Army Allen, Louis. Burma: the Longest War 1941-45. J. M

Great Academy Ashton

Great Academy Ashton is a coeducational secondary school with academy status in Ashton-under-Lyne, Greater Manchester, England. The school was formed on 1 September 2008 as a result of a merger Hartshead Sports College and Stamford High School. New Charter Academy was based over the two former school sites, but moved to a new £40 million sole campus in September 2011. Great Academy Ashton is formally part of the Great Academies Education Trust which includes Copley Academy and Silver Springs Primary Academy, both in Stalybridge. Great Academy Ashton is sometimes informally known as GAA and used to be called New Charter Academy up until September 2017; the school was placed in special measures in January 2017 and as a result the former headteacher left. The current headteacher has been working at the school since April 2017. David Potts, CEO, Morrisons Official website Great Academies Education Trust