Famous People from the UK

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30 Famous Englishmen

1. Henry VIII (1491-1547) - Henry was the second Tudor monarch. He broke with the Papacy in Rome and established the Church of England, initiating the English Reformation...

2. Sir Francis Drake (1540-1596) - Drake was an Elizabethan sailor and navigator, and the first Englishman to circumnavigate the globe. He also defeated the Spanish Armada. Hero...

3. William Shakespeare (1564-1616) - Shakespeare's reputation as dramatist and poet actor is unique and he is considered by many to be the greatest playwright of all time...

4. Guy Fawkes (1570-1606) - Fawkes tried to blow up the Houses of Parliament in the Gun Powder Plot, failed, got caught and executed. The 5th November is no known as Guy Fawkes night...

5. Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658) - English soldier and statesman who helped make England a republic and then ruled as lord protector from 1653 to 1658...

Oliver Cromwell

6. Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1727) - A mathematician and physicist, and one of the foremost scientific intellects of all time. Came up with the theory of gravity...

7. Captain James Cook (1728-1779) - An explorer and navigator whose achievements in mapping the Pacific, New Zealand and Australia radically changed western perceptions of world geography...

8. Horatio Nelson (1758-1805) - A British naval commander and national hero, famous for his naval victories against the French during the Napoleonic Wars...

9. Isambard Kingdom Brunel (1806-1859) - Brunel was one of the most versatile and audacious engineers of the 19th century, responsible for the design of tunnels, bridges, railway lines and ships...

10. Charles Darwin (1809-1882) - A British scientist who laid the foundations of the theory of evolution and transformed the way we think about the natural world...

Charles Darwin

11. Charles Dickens (1812-1870) - Was the most popular English novelist of the Victorian era and is responsible for some of English literature's most iconic characters...

12. Emily Bronte (1818-1848) - An English novelist and poet, now best remembered for her only novel, Wuthering Heights, a classic of English literature in a time dominated by male supremacy...

13. Florence Nightingale (1820-1910) - Famous for her work in the military hospitals of the Crimea, Nightingale established nursing as a respectable profession for women and inspired thousands...

14. Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965) - A British prime minister and statesman who led the country to victory against Nazi Germany. Was famous for his bulldog spirit...

15. Sir Charlie Chaplin (1889-1977) - The biggest silent actor of his generation who brought laughter to millions through his comic acting...

Charlie Chaplin ©Fr. Dougal McGuire

16. Jack the Ripper (late 19th century) - He / she is a really famous serial killer in London who murdered at least five victims and never got caught...

17. Sir David Attenborough (1926-) - Sir David Attenborough is Britain's best-known natural history film-maker. His career as a naturalist and broadcaster has spanned nearly five decades...

18. Queen Elizabeth II (1926-) - The Queen is Head of State of the UK and 15 other Commonwealth realms. She is a national symbol and a national treasure to all...

19. Sir Roger Banister (1929-) - The first known athlete to break the four-minute mile...

20. Sir Michael Caine (1933-) - If you want a cockney accent look no further than Michael Caine. He has been in dozens of major films such as Zulu, The Italian Job, The Man Who Would Be King, Batman...

21. Steven Hawkins (1942-) - Theoretical physicist and cosmologist, whose scientific books and public appearances have made him an academic celebrity...

22. Sir Mick Jagger (1943-) - The lead singer for The Rolling Stones and self-proclaimed womaniser. He did a little bit of acting and modelling on the side too...

23. Sir Elton John (1947-) - He is a singer/song-writer and composer, with a tonne of hits and number ones. He’s done a lot of work with charities too...

24. Sir Richard Branson (1950-) - One of Britain's most famous entrepreneurs, he is also a British adventurer who has risen from dyslexic high school dropout to self-made billionaire...

25. Simon Cowell (1959-) - A British music executive, television producer and entrepreneur. Re-invented reality TV with shows such as Pop Idol, The X Factor, Britain's Got Talent, and American Idol...

26. The Beatles (1960-1970) - British band from Liverpool. Probably the world’s biggest band. Ever...

27. Diana, Princess of Wales (1961-1997) - Known as the people’s Princess, she was loved by the nation. She married into the Royal family and was known for her work with charity. Utterly selfless...

28. JK Rowling (1965-) - She made Boys and girls, men and women all over the world want to be wizards and witches. She wrote the Harry Potter series, rivalling Lord of the Rings as the number one fantasy series...

29. Jamie Oliver (1975-) - Famous celebrity chef, restaurateur, and media personality, known for his food-focused television shows, cookbooks and changing the diet of Britain...

30. David Beckham (1975-) - The world’s most famous footballer, model and off-the-field celebrity. He looks good too...

David Beckham ©friskytuna

So there we have it, 30 very famous Englishmen. If you're heading to United Kingdom on your gap year then make sure you check out our info on how to get there, how to get around and things to see and do when you're there!