From the archive: in search of the true British identity, 1967

What remained in the population at large of our Viking, Stone Age or Anglo-Saxon forefathers?

The Observer Magazine of 12 February 1967 asked: ‘Who are the British?’, detailing our history of conquerors with a short interview with an inhabitant with some connection, spurious or otherwise.

First we heard from Jim James, 75, representing the stone age, one of the last survivors of Plinlimmon, Cardiganshire, which was evacuated to make way for a hydroelectric scheme in 1961. ‘These hill shepherds and farmers, inbred for centuries, are believed to have retained features – broad faces, strong cheekbones and eyebrow-ridges – of their stone age ancestors.’ I’m sure Jim was chuffed with that.

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