The year on the coin you receive will be the specific year of the listing
1940 - Information from 1940Monarch - King George VI
Prime Minister - Neville Chamberlain, national coalition (until 10 May), Winston Churchill, coalition
Events8 January - Food rationing introduced.
18 January - Explosion at Waltham Abbey Royal Gunpowder Mills (five killed).
26–30 January - Severe ice storm across the UK.
3 February - A Heinkel He 111 bomber is the first German plane shot down over England.
16 February - Royal Navy destroyer HMS Cossack pursues German freighter Altmark into Jossingfjord in southwestern Norway, resulting in freedom for 290 British sailors and seamen held as prisoners.
26 January - British battleship HMS Barham is torpedoed by a U-boat but suffers only minor damage.
3–9 March - RMS Queen Elizabeth makes her maiden voyage on delivery from Clydebank to New York.
16 March - First civilian casualty of bombing in the UK, on Orkney.
29 March - Metal security threads added to £1 notes to prevent forgeries.
31 March - 33 fascist sympathisers, including Oswald Mosley, are interned.
9 April - The British campaign in Norway commences following the German invasion of Denmark and Norway.
12 April - British troop occupy the Faroe Islands, following the invasion of Denmark, to avert a possible German occupation of the islands.
9 May - Guy Lloyd wins the East Renfrewshire by-election.
10 May - Neville Chamberlain resigns as Prime Minister, and is replaced by Winston Churchill.
13 May - Winston Churchill, makes his famous "I have nothing to offer you but blood, toil, tears, and sweat" speech to the House of Commons.
Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands and her government arrive in London following the German invasion of France and the Low Countries.
Recruitment begins for a home defence force - the Local Defence Volunteers, renamed as the Home Guard from 23 July.
22 May - Parliament passes the Emergency Powers Act giving the government full control over all persons and property.
24 May - Anglo-French Supreme War Council decides to withdraw all forces from Norway.
26 May to 4 June - The Dunkirk evacuation of British Expeditionary Force takes place. 300,000 troops are evacuated from France to England.
A Supermarine Spitfire, used by the RAF during the Battle of Britain.
4 June - Churchill makes his We shall fight on the beaches speech to the House of Commons.
9 June - The Commandos are created.
10 June - Italy declares war on France and the United Kingdom.
17 June - HMT Lancastria is bombed and sunk while evacuating British troops and nationals from St. Nazaire with the loss of 4,000 lives, the largest single UK loss in any World War II event.
Churchill makes his Battle of Britain speech to the House of Commons, "...the Battle of France is over. The Battle of Britain is about to begin... This was their finest hour."
Appeal of 18 June: General Charles de Gaulle, de facto leader of the Free French Forces, makes his first broadcast appeal over Radio Londres from London, rallying French Resistance.
23 June - BBC Forces Programme begins broadcasting Music While You Work.
30 June - German forces land in Guernsey marking the start of the 5-year Occupation of the Channel Islands.
2 July - British-owned SS Arandora Star, carrying civilian internees and POWs of Italian and German origin from Liverpool to Canada, is torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U-47 off northwest Ireland with the loss of around 865 lives.
British naval units sink or seize ships of the French fleet anchored in the Algerian ports of Oran and Mers-el-Kebir. The following day, Vichy France breaks off diplomatic relations with Britain.
Cardiff bombed for the first time.
9 July - The Battle of Britain begins.
19 July - Adolf Hitler makes a peace appeal to the UK in an address to the Reichstag. Lord Halifax, British foreign minister, flatly rejects peace terms in a broadcast reply on 22 July.
9 August - Birmingham Blitz: Heavy bombing of Birmingham begins.
18 August - HRH The Prince Edward, Duke of Windsor, installed as Governor of the Bahamas.
20 August - Churchill pays tribute to the Royal Air Force: "Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few."
First aid raid on London takes place.
Howard Florey and a team including Ernst Chain, Arthur Duncan Gardner, Norman Heatley, M. Jennings, J. Orr-Ewing and G. Sanders at the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, University of Oxford, publish their laboratory results showing the in vivo bactericidal action of penicillin. They have also purified the drug.
26 August - The RAF bomb Berlin for the first time.
7 September - The Blitz begins. This will be the first of 57 consecutive nights of strategic bombing on London.
15 September - RAF command claims victory over the Luftwaffe in the Battle of the Britain; this day is thereafter known as "Battle of Britain Day".
17–18 September - SS City of Benares is torpedoed by German submarine U-48 in the Atlantic with the loss of 248 of the 406 on board, including child evacuees bound for Canada. The sinking results in cancellation of the Children's Overseas Reception Board's plan to relocate British children abroad.
23 September - King George VI announces the creation of the George Cross decoration during a radio broadcast.
31 October - The Battle of Britain ends.
11 November - Battle of Taranto - The Royal Navy launches the first aircraft carrier strike in history, on the Italian fleet at Taranto.
14 November - Coventry Blitz: The centre of Coventry is destroyed by 500 German Luftwaffe bombers: 150,000 fire bombs, 503 tons of high explosives and 130 parachute mines level 60,000 of the city's 75,000 buildings; 568 people are killed.
19 November - Heavy air raids take place in central England, with Birmingham,West Bromwich,and Dudley all being hit. Hundreds of people are killed and many more injured - there are 53 deaths at the Birmingham Small Arms Factory in Small Heath alone.
23 November - Southampton Blitz: Southampton is bombed.
24 November - Bristol Blitz: beginning of the bombing of Bristol.
27 November–1 December - Oil storage depot fire at Turnchapel, Plymouth, caused by bombing.
12–15 December - Sheffield Blitz: the city of Sheffield is heavily bombed.
20 December - Liverpool Blitz: Liverpool is heavily bombed.
22 December - Manchester Blitz: Manchester is heavily bombed.
29 December - Heavy bombing in London causes the Second Great Fire of London.
1940-Videos from 1940