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Welsh Lives: New series launches on ITV Cymru Wales

New series Welsh Lives launches this week on ITV Cymru Wales, celebrating the lives of ordinary people with extraordinary stories.

The first episode, which airs on Thursday 28th March at 8.30pm, features two war heroes with remarkable tales of courage and survival.

Wrexham soldier Shaun Stocker suffered horrific injuries whilst serving in Afghanistan. Credit: ITV Cymru Wales

Afghanistan veteran Shaun Stocker, from Wrexham, was left with life-changing injuries after stepping on a landmine. He shares his inspirational story of how it hasn't stopped him from living life to the fullest.

We also hear from 101-year-old Ron Jones from Newport, a World War Two veteran who survived the horrors of Auschwitz concentration camp and a death march across Europe.

War veteran Ron Jones shares his harrowing account of life in a concentration camp. Credit: ITV Cymru Wales

The series has been produced by ITV's Carwyn Jones.

We often come across people whose stories stop us in our tracks. Welsh Lives is a chance to fully hear those stories, in the detail they deserve.

These are people whom many of us will never have heard of. Men and women from across Wales, whose lives have taken some truly remarkable twists and turns.

Each story is unique, but there's a common thread: no matter what life throws at us, there is always hope.

– Carwyn Jones, Welsh Lives producer

The new series explores the stories of people like David Wilson, the celebrated photographer seriously injured in a motorbike accident, who is now navigating the Pembrokeshire landscape to produce extraordinary images.

Also featured is Professor Meena Upadhyaya, who has overcome prejudice and the sudden death of her husband, to produce ground-breaking research into genetic diseases.

There’s a race against time to find a bone marrow match for young Marley Nicholls, surrounded by a family and supporters who have gone the extra mile to encourage us all to become donors.

And we hear the incredible story of university student and burns survivor Catrin Pugh, who is changing the face of fashion and beauty in the ongoing battle to represent difference.

Presenter Adeola Dewis said hearing the contributors' stories moved her to tears. Credit: ITV Cymru Wales

Following the success of the series Dock of The Bay, also for ITV Cymru Wales, Welsh Lives is a new venture for presenter, Adeola Dewis.

This series has been an emotional journey for me. I feel truly humbled to be a part of the process, re-living every step on these life-changing journeys.

I have been moved to tears listening to people recount their extraordinary lives. I have seen glimpses of pain behind their eyes, as well as the strength and hope that makes every day, every breath, a positive one.

– Adeola Dewis

Watch a preview of Welsh Lives below:

Welsh Lives is broadcast on ITV Cymru Wales on Thursdays at 8.30pm, starting on Thursday 28th March. The programme will also be available online at itv.com/walesprogrammes and as a podcast.

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