Welsh stars – and Damian Lewis – welcome Barack Obama to Wales

The Welsh Government has released a video to commemorate the President's first visit, featuring stars including Matthew Rhys, Katherine Jenkins, Bryn Terfyl and Colin Jackson



Today’s the day that the international NATO summit of world leaders kicks off in Wales, and it’s safe to say everyone’s a bit starstruck.

It’s the first time that a sitting President of the United States has visited the country, and to commemorate the occasion the Welsh Government has released a video in which celebrities offer him a warm welcome (and some nice aerial shots of the green bits).

While opera singer Bryn Terfel might be a new face to Obama, the President is bound to recognise Damian Lewis, the former star of his self-professed favourite show Homeland, who explained his own connection to Wales (through his paternal grandparents) despite his English origins.

“You might be wondering what a man with my accent is doing welcoming you to Wales. I am a London welshman, there are many of us, and I’m very proud to be so,” said Lewis.

“My family has always had a farmhouse in West Wales. It is, I have to say, my favourite place on earth.”

Actress Helen McCrory, singer Katherine Jenkins, former athlete Colin Jackson and Matthew Rhys, who appears in US cold war drama The Americans, also took part in the video.

Rhys, who also played Mr Darcy in Pride and Prejudice sequel Death Comes to Pemberley last year, had some sage advice for the visiting dignitaries. “I encourage you all to buy a castle while you are here,” he said. “They are cheap as chips and two-a-penny.”

He also found time to give the President a crash course in the Welsh language.”Croeso i Gymru; no I didn’t just cough. It means welcome to Wales.”


Clearly it’s only a matter of time until Obama rechristens his home y Tŷ Gwyn.