Home Today's Reason to Drink August 8: 56th Anniversary of the Great Train Robbery.

August 8: 56th Anniversary of the Great Train Robbery.

Today is the 56th anniversary of the Great Train Robbery. On this day in 1963, 15 South London professional criminals held up a mail train in England and made off with 2.6 million pounds. In today’s dollars, that’s about 70 million bucks. The plan was largely conceived and put together in London pubs, after hours, while knocking back pints of beer and drams of whiskey. That’s how the South London criminals rolled back then. They almost got away with it, but you know how it is when 15 people try to keep a large secret. Especially if they don’t mind a drink or two. Of alcohol’s many benefits, keeping someone close-mouthed and cagey isn’t one of them. Still, some of the robbers were never caught, or even identified, and two of those who were caught successfully escaped. One was in prison all of three minutes before escaping, which has got to be some kind of record. The robbery has had a considerable pop culture impact over the years, inspiring many books, movies and songs. True story: One of the robbers, Ronnie Briggs, provided vocals on two Sex Pistols’ songs.

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