Polling Jones: Welsh surname smashes world record

MORE than 1,000 Joneses proved last night that there is no keeping up with them when they broke the world record for the biggest get-together of people with the same surname.

A record breaking 1,224 Joneses gathered at the Wales Millennium Centre, in Cardiff, smashing the previous record held by Sweden where 583 Norbergs gathered in one place.

Joneses from across Wales and as far away as Australia descended on the capital city to make up the audience for the “Jones Jones Jones” variety show.

One American tour company even organised a special trip to Wales so that Joneses living in the States could play a part in the show.

Those named Jones were given priority in attending the event and audience members had to bring proof of identity with them. Hyphenated surnames or maiden names did not count.

Guinness World Record officials were in attendance to validate the attempt and a programme based on the bid is being produced for S4C by Caernarfon-based Cwmni Da, to be broadcast after the event.

Former Bond girl and 80s pop star Grace Jones headed a host of famous Joneses performing at tonight’s event, in her first visit to Wales.

Opera singers Dame Gwyneth Jones and Gwyn Hughes Jones and West End star John Owen-Jones, all added to the numbers helping to break the record. Blue Peter presenter Gethin Jones and former S4C presenter Gwenllian Jones co-hosted the evening.

There are 431,558 Joneses in Britain and it is the second most popular surname there after Smith. Blaenau Ffestiniog, in north Wales, has a higher proportion of Joneses than any other town in Britain.

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