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How Wales Rules The World.

Byline: By Wales on Sunday

If you're sick of all the Euro 2004 St George flags, we've got some good news for you.

Little do they know but there's a subtle Taffia takeover going on right under our English neighbours' noses.

From the first news broadcast of the day, to putting on make-up, buying a CD, watching their favourite footie team, and putting on their pyjamas, chances are there's a Welsh person behind the lot...

oMICHAEL HOWARD, leader of the Conservative party, was born in 1941 in Gorseinon and grew up in Llanelli. His dad was a Jewish shopkeeper who fled Romania during World War II.

oPETER HAIN, born in Nairobi, Kenya, made his name as an anti-apartheid campaigner. Became MP for Neath in 1991, Secretary of State for Wales in 2002 and is now also Commons Leader. Seen as a Labour leader in waiting.

oGLENYS KINNOCK, Member of the European Parliament, was educated at Holyhead Comprehensive School and graduated from the University of Wales College Cardiff with a degree in education and history.

oNEIL KINNOCK, vice president of the European Commission, was born in Tredegar, South Wales, and completed a BA in industrial relations and history at Cardiff. He married Glenys in 1967. They have two adult children and two grandchildren.

oPAUL MURPHY, Northern Ireland Secretary, was born in Usk in 1948. He was educated at St Francis RC School, Abersychan, and West Monmouth School at Pontypool. He began his career as a management trainee and later became a lecturer in Government and History at Ebbw Vale College of Further Education.

oJOHN PRESCOTT, Deputy Prime Minister was born in Prestatyn, May 1938, but (luckily!) two Jags soon hopped over the border to go to school in Ellesmere Port.

oSIR HOWARD STRINGER, chairman and chief exec of Sony. Born in Cardiff, he helped launch the career of chat show host David Letterman and has won nine Emmy awards.

oLINDSAY OWEN-JONES, L'Oreal boss, was born in Wales and was this year listed in the top 100 most influential people in the world by Time magazine.

oSIR TERRY MATTHEWS, the Newbridge-born telecommunications and electronics tycoon, owns the very plush Celtic Manor resort, Newport.

oPAUL DUDDRIDGE, famous showbiz agent, from Cardiff, co-wrote the comedy series Director's Commentary with funnyman Rob Brydon.

oMIKE SLOCOMBE, Cardiff-born, made it into Internet Magazine's Top 50 Most Important People on the Web, made a fortune from his book on how to build websites.

oCLAIRE FOX, from Buckley, isn't afraid to speak her mind - she's the director of the Institute of Ideas, in London, a centre devoted to debate!

oSTEVE MORGAN, multi-millionaire building magnate who made a bid for Liverpool footie club earlier this year, showed a natural talent for business at Eirias High School, Colwyn Bay.

oIAN HISLOP, Private Eye editor and witty team captain on Have I Got News for You, was born in the Mumbles, Swansea, but doesn't like to shout about it.

oJOHN HUMPHRYS, the rottweiler newsreader on BBC Radio 4's Today programme, was born in Splott, Cardiff.

oMICHAEL BUERK, BBC newsreader, also came from Splott, and credits Humphrys with putting the area on the map.

oHUW EDWARDS, anchorman on BBC1's 10 O'Clock News, was born in Llangennech, near Llanelli, and first stumbled into journalism at Swansea Sound radio station.

oJEREMY BOWEN, who was born in Cardiff and went to Cardiff High School, has reported for the BBC from more than 70 different war-zones worldwide.

oDAVID GOWER, former international cricketer-turned-BBC commentator, comes from Castell Maelgwyn near Llechryd, Cardiganshire.

oSIAN LLOYD and HELEN WILLETTS, both national weathergirls, bring a piece of Welsh sunshine to their forecasts. Sian is from Neath and Helen comes from Colwyn Bay.

oGABBY LOGAN, daughter of former Wales manager Terry Yorath , was named Sports Presenter of the Year in 2001 and is currently presenting ITV's Euro 2004 coverage.

oLOWRI TURNER, GMTV fashion pundit, radio DJ, DIY SOS presenter and novelist...there's nothing this Welsh lass can't put her hands to.

oCAROL VORDERMAN, from Prestatyn, has branched out from being just the face of Countdown to being a fully-fledged celeb with a detox diet to promote.

oMARCO MARENGHI, an animator from Ystrad in the Rhondda, has weaved his magic on some of the biggest films around, including Lord of the Rings and Spiderman 2. He works with Sony Pictures Image Works, in California.

oJACI STEPHEN, outspoken TV critic and This Morning's Soap queen, hails from Cardiff.

oTERRY YORATH, former Wales boss from Cardiff, now puts his energies into Huddersfield football club, where he is assistant manager.

oCHRIS COLEMAN, ex-Swansea and Crystal Palace defender, is manager of Fulham FC.

oDEAN SAUNDERS, who was capped a record 75 times for Wales, is assistant manager Blackburn Rovers and hails from Swansea.

oDELIA SMITH, who has Welsh parents and a Welsh husband, taught us How to Cook for 30 years then swapped the kitchen for the pitch and now devotes her time to Norwich football club.

oJULIEN MACDONALD, from Merthyr Tydfil, has added his trademark glitz to a whole host of famous celebrities and models, including Kylie, Kelly Brook and Martine McCutcheon.

oDAVID EMMANUEL, from Bridgend, made his name by designing Princess Diana's wedding dress.

oJEFF BANKS, born in Ebbw Vale, has twice won British Designer of the Year, founded high street giant Warehouse and has an international chain of Jeff Banks stores.

oLAURA ASHLEY, was born in Mid Wales, and has cornered the market in traditional feminine clothes and floral furnishings.

oLAURENCE LLEWELYN-BOWEN, the Prince of Chintz, has worked his interior design magic on millions of homes.

oDR ROWAN WILLIAMS, the Archbishop of Canterbury is from Swansea. Dr Williams looks set to follow in Sir Anthony Hopkins' and Tom Jones' footsteps as a guest on The Simpsons.

oSOPHIE RHYS-JONES, Countess of Wessex, was born in Oxford, but that surname tells of Welsh descent.

oQUEEN NOOR OF JORDAN is international president of Atlantic College, Llantwit Major, near Cardiff.

oSTEVE MORGAN, from Maesteg, is chairman and director of public affairs for the Morgan Allen Moore consultancy, and helped Al Gore in his US election campaign in 2000. He's now hoping to get Democrat John Kerry to the White House.

oCATHERINE ZETA JONES has taken Hollywood by storm, bagged herself an Oscar, wrangled her way through the courts and acquired a stalker. A true celeb!

oSIR ANTHONY HOPKINS, aka Hannibal Lecter, from Port Talbot, has never forgotten his Welsh roots - he even donated pounds 1m to the National Trust's bid for Snowdonia.

oKYLIE MINOGUE has got her Maesteg roots to thank for her perfectly-formed posterior and her lasting singing career. At least, that's what we'd like to think.

oIOAN GRUFFUDD, sizzling Cardiff-born actor, is all set to take the film industry by storm this summer with the much-awaited release of King Arthur. If the very tasty piccies of him in his armour are anything to go by, this one's going to be a mega-hit.

oCHARLOTTE CHURCH, from Cardiff, made her millions when she was just 13, and since turning 18 and publicly dumping her 'bit of rough' boyfriend, this gorgeous girl has become a paparazzi favourite.

oTOM JONES, The Voice from Treforest, still knows how to work his mojo and will be playing Cardiff Castle this summer.

oNAOMI WATTS, Hollywood goddess who starred in Mulholland Drive, was brought up in Llangefni, on Anglesey.

oKATHERINE JENKINS, from Neath, made her name in the record books this year when she signed a pounds 1m record deal and topped the classical charts. But the gorgeous opera star still takes time out to teach in London. Bless!

oLOSTPROPHETS and FUNERAL FROM A FRIEND, both from Pontypridd, and Newport's wacky GOLDIE LOOKIN' CHAIN are flying the flag for Welsh music, building on success by the Manics and Stereophonics.

OUR PAST glories : Wimbledon stars may have the Welsh to thank. Lawn tennis is thought to have developed from the old Welsh game of Cerrig y Drudion.

A group of Welsh explorers may have landed on America's coast hundreds of years before the English. Madog ab Owain Gwynedd, a 12th century prince from Gwynedd, sailed westward and landed at Mobile Bay, Alabama in 1169.

Welshman John Evans helped map the north American continent.

The New York Times was founded by George Jones, the son of an immigrant from Montgomeryshire, Mid Wales.

In 1805, Oliver Evans invented a basic car, with steam powered wheels. He was born to a family of Welsh settlers in Delaware.

Yale University, in New Haven, Brown University in Rhode Island and Beijing University in China were all founded by Welshmen.

The world's first wireless radio transmission took place on May 13, 1897, between Lavernock, near Porthcawl, and the Island of Flatholm.

In March 1807, the Swansea to Mumbles railroad became the first route to accept paying rail passengers.

Composer Michael J. Lewis, from Aberystwyth, wrote the music which accompanied the 1998 Academy Awards in Hollywood.

The first ever mail-order shopping service was introduced in 1859, in Newtown, when astute businessman Pryce Pryce-Jones realised the needs of his rural customers.
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Copyright 2004 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Publication:Wales On Sunday (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Jun 27, 2004
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