Gavin & Stacey star discovers family's role in founding NHS on Who Do You Think You Are

Amy West
·2-min read
Photo credit: BBC
Photo credit: BBC

From Digital Spy

Gavin & Stacey star Ruth Jones was moved to tears while taking part in Who Do You Think You Are recently, when she discovered that one of her family member's helped shaped the NHS.

In tonight's episode of the BBC genealogy show (October 26), which sees famous types look into their heritage, the writer-actress learned that her grandfather Henry Richard Jones was a prominent figure in the Medical Aid Societies of South Wales.

The organisation, she went on to find out, wound up being a "precursor" to today's publicly-funded institution.

Photo credit: BBC
Photo credit: BBC

Related: Gavin & Stacey star Ruth Jones shares disappointing update on next reunion

The investigation into her past revealed that Henry's work in the sector led him to regularly contact the then Minister of Health, fellow Welshman Aneurin Bevan, about how beneficial a nationwide healthcare service would be. Bevan, interestingly enough, went on to become the founder of the NHS.

"The fact that my grandfather was so involved was quite an achievement really," she said, while perusing Henry's letters to the Tredegar MP.

"What I do feel excited about, in a slightly shallow way, is that my grandfather knew Aneurin Bevan," Jones added. "Such an influential figure in our history. Good on you, grandfather. You gave back to life and you helped a lot of people. And that's pretty good going, I think."

Photo credit: BBC
Photo credit: BBC

Related: Who Do You Think You Are viewers left heartbroken as Daniel Radcliffe discovers tragic ancestry

Later, Jones became emotional after stumbling across a letter Henry had sent to NHS officials, as well as his CV, following its conception in 1948, in which he asked about the possibility of finding employment within the system.

Despite having nearly 40 years experience in relevant fields though, his enquiry proved less than fruitful.

Who Do You Think You Are continues next Monday (November 2), with an episode centred on Silent Witness star Liz Carr, at 9pm on BBC One.

Digital Spy has launched its first-ever digital magazine with exclusive features, interviews, and videos. Access the latest edition with a 1-month free trial, only on Apple News+.

Interested in Digital Spy's weekly newsletter? Sign up to get it sent straight to your inbox – and don't forget to join our Watch This Facebook Group for daily TV recommendations and discussions with other readers.

You Might Also Like