Tuesday, 30 October 2007

Michael Ball's Granny

Most reporters in Wales devote themselves to a fearless pursuit of the Welsh angle in an attempt to engage our audiences.

Sometimes it is obvious - a story happens in Wales or involves someone whose fame is inextricably linked to their roots.

Other links are slightly more tenuous. There are celebrities with Welsh names who are strangers to the land of their fathers, even if the naming process has done their career no harm west (virtually) of Offa's Dyke.

There are others who probably didn't know they were Welsh until some enterprising reporter from Wales on Sunday alerted them to a distant relative. This website is particularly useful for reporters in search of a celebrity who once spent a windy weekend in Rhyl.

In politics, Conservative politicians sometimes found themselves tipped for the Welsh Office due to accidents of birth. Michael Howard and Tristan Garel-Jones are two members of the club of ex-future Welsh Secretaries.

Sometimes newspapers throw in Welsh links in apparent near desperation. I have never seen the evidence myself but I've been told that one newspaper allegedly reported The Beatles with the suffix "who once played in Aberdare".

So hats off to today's Western Mail. Michael Ball has had a hugely successful career in music and entertainment. But he has probably never before been definded by the fact that his grandmother came from Mountain Ash.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Michael's mother's side of his family are from Mountain Ash. :)

Valleys Mam said...

its not just personalities there are lots of politicians, scientists,authors,musicians business people,engineers etc
At one time there was anattempt to bring these lists together in an organisation called Bedd Cymru,Elfed Roberts was the chair and eleri Carrog started it I think