Cymru DNA Wales project set to rewrite Welsh history

26th September 2014

At a time when national identity is emphatically on the agenda in the nations of Britain and Ireland, Green Bay Media is undertaking a thrilling new project that will define what it is to be Welsh - Cymru DNA Wales.

For the first time, ancestral DNA will systematically profile the genome of Wales.

Every Welshman and Welshwoman is descended from an immigrant, from the prehistoric pioneers who first saw the valleys and mountains emerge from the last ice age 11,000 years ago to more modern arrivals. And every Welshman and Welshwoman carries ancestral DNA inside them, which could answer many as yet unanswered questions to reveal a hidden history of Wales never before told.

• Across the millennia of prehistory and over 2,000 years of recorded history, where did the people who would come to be the Welsh originate?
• Who were the first farmers in the hills and valleys?
• What influence did the Romans and their legions have?
• Or the Vikings?
• Can the bloodlines of Dark Ages Welsh kings be found?
• And what happened to the Tudors?

Green Bay Media will tackle these and many other fascinating questions as the genome of Wales emerges and a new people's history is discovered.

Celebrities contributing to the genome profiling include Michael Sheen, Bryn Terfel, Sian Lloyd, Max Boyce, Rhod Gilbert and Gareth Edwards.

Green Bay Media's Creative Director, John Geraint says:

"Green Bay has been privileged to produce many prestigious history series in the UK and further afield, including the BBC's ‘official' history of the nation, ‘The Story of Wales'. But this project promises to be the most ground-breaking of them all - in the way it will combine history and science; in the participation of thousands of people in Wales; and in its potential to deliver an authoritative answer to the question ‘Who are the Welsh?'"

This ambitious multi-media project is a collaboration between partners S4C, the Western Mail and the Daily Post, Green Bay Media and the newly formed Cymru DNA Wales.

Over the two- to three-year project, Green Bay will create a major series of programmes on S4C, starting in April 2015. The work will also result in a lasting educational legacy for future generations.

The aim is to provide a new way of doing television history, via genetics and an unprecedented mass survey of Welsh DNA, in tandem with academic disciplines.

The new Cymru DNA Wales venture is the brainchild of S4C Chief Executive, Ian Jones who discussed the idea with the research company responsible for ScotlandsDNA. That scheme had brought together historical analysis and genetic information from ancestral DNA testing to look at Scotland's history.

According to S4C Chief Executive, Ian Jones,

"S4C is proud to be a principal partner in a ground-breaking project which will literally rewrite the history of Wales and the British Isles. This project is an integral part of our dynamic multi-platform strategy and by working with a range of forward-looking organisations, we are helping to create a legacy that will last as long as our nation and culture live and thrive."

The Western Mail and the Daily Post, will provide editorial content in their newspapers and on-line websites.

Media Wales Editor in Chief Alan Edmunds says:

"As media organisations, Western Mail and Daily Post spend every day trying to get under the skin of Wales and are hugely excited to be playing a key part in project which will do just that in a way we haven't seen before.
"For the past five years we have been trying to shed new light on the whole story of the Welsh people through our Welsh History Month series of books and Hay Festival debates and this project takes that journey to a whole new level."

Follow the link below for the Cymru DNA promo



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