Wednesday, June 22, 2011


"Congrats to you and the people of Wales!"

That is the message I received earlier this morning from Ana Martinez at the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, which has responsibility for the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

To be honest, I haven't been able to stop the smile off my face today, even when chairing a postgraduate research awards board at the Irish Research Council, which made many of the esteemed academics sitting around the table wonder why I was finding such pleasure in Ph.D applications on Irish History, management studies and humanities!

The BBC has already run the story and it is starting to go viral globally, which is good news as we still need to raise money for the star.

We are having a meeting next week to discuss our strategy but I have already been in touch with Welsh expats in LA who are hoping to do a fundraising dinner in the Autumn.

I hope we can also do one here in Wales and in London, as well as holding a film premiere (the Apollo in Port Talbot has already promised us a night for the Wild Geese). That should raise the rest of the money needed for the star as well as the extra we want to create scholarships at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.

When there seems to be a recent tendency to talk down everything that is good in Wales, the Star for Burton campaign will hopefully remind us of what a great nation we are and how we can produce the talent to compete with the best in the World.