herald

Thursday 17 August 2017

Over one third have redhead DNA

IRELAND may be the island of saints and scholars, but Scotland takes the honour as the undisputed home of redheads.

A new genetic study of the 'ginger' gene has shown that, contrary to popular mythology, there are more people with redheaded DNA in Scotland than in Ireland. Incredibly, there are now more people carrying red-headed DNA in Wales than in some parts of Ireland.

RESEARCH

THE REVELATION CAME AS A RESEARCH FIRM, SCOTLANDDNA, RELEASED THE RESULTS OF A MAJOR SURVEY TO COINCIDE WITH A CORK VILLAGE'S 'RED HEAD FESTIVAL'.

Crosshaven stages an annual festival to honour all things ginger or carrot-topped.

The survey found that:

* The most red-headed part of Britain and Ireland is the south-east of Scotland.

* In Edinburgh, 40pc of people carry one of three common red hair genes.

* Scotland has an overall rate of red-headed DNA of 36.5pc.

* Ireland, in contrast, is marginally lower with a national rate of 34.7pc.

* Wales surprised the experts by having a red-headed DNA rate of 38pc.

* Yorkshire, despite its image for blonde Danish and Anglo-Saxon ancestry, has a red-headed DNA rate of 34.4pc.

* England's red-headed DNA rate is 32.4pc.

* The lowest rate of red-headed DNA across Britain and Ireland was in East Anglia with a rate of just 21pc.

* The study estimated that, across Britain and Ireland, a staggering 20.4 million people carry some form of red-headed DNA meaning that 'gingers' can crop up every couple of generations.

hnews@herald.ie

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