Press release: Were Daniel Craig’s ancestors more deadly than Bond?

Download a PDF version of this release here.



We find out in the latest research by Discover Your Ancestors

  • Genealogist discovers Bond star descends from long line of action men and overseas adventurers
  • Ancestor Vice-Admiral Sir William Burnaby, a colourful 18th-century swash buckling dandy, destroyed privateer sloops in true James Bond style
  • Daniel Craig’s namesake Daniel Chamier, hailed as a Huguenot hero, was mortally wounded in 17th-century Siege of Montauban

New research published in the latest annual print edition of Discover Your Ancestors by leading genealogist Laura Berry, reveals that 007-star Daniel Craig’s 6-x-great-grandfather, was swashbuckling naval officer Sir William Burnaby (c1710–1776). The 18th-century dandy may well have been more deadly than Bond.[1]

In 1743 Burnaby captured two privateer sloops off the Puerto Rican coast, destroyed another two and burnt a sloop in Aguada Bay. Quickly promoted through the ranks, he went on to become Commander-in-Chief in the Gulf of Mexico.[2]

The news comes as Daniel Craig is pictured filming the forthcoming Bond film Spectre in Mexico City amidst celebrations of the Day of the Dead. Far from finding skeletons in Craig’s family tree, the research has unearthed plenty of ancestors for the actor to be proud of.

Celebrity genealogist Laura Berry made the astonishing discoveries using wills, parish records and biographical sources on “So many more historical records have been made available online in recent years that I was quickly able to dig a lot deeper into Daniel Craig’s roots.” said Berry.

French Huguenot roots

Digital copies of parish registers from the French Protestant Chapel ‘Les Grecs’ in Soho, London, revealed that Craig’s 6-x-great-grandmother Judith Chamier was the grandchild of a Huguenot émigré who fled France in the 17th century after Louis XIV revoked the Edict of Nantes.

Their ancestor Daniel Chamier was instrumental in drafting the Edict in the 16th century with Henry IV of France, which granted Calvinist Protestants (known as Huguenots) the right to worship freely in Catholic France following a succession of bloody religious wars. Tensions rose again in the 17th century, however, when Daniel Chamier was mortally wounded during the Siege of Montauban in 1621.[3]

Burnaby and the Chamiers are just some of Craig’s ancestors who saw action overseas, with several English predecessors serving for Crown and Country and various branches venturing to India.

Special offer

This year’s issue of Discover Your Ancestors (Issue 4) features a cover DVD with an amazing collection of resources and offers – including a FREE three-month subscription to – worth more than £130.



Discover Your Ancestors

Andrew Chapman                                                                      01534 610735

Nick Thorne                                         

Expert Genealogist                                        07838 156610

Laura Berry                                           


Discover Your Ancestors is an annual bookazine that was launched in 2011 by DMG Publishing and is available in branches of WHSmiths, Sainsburys, Morrisons, Easons and Martin McColl as well as larger groups in the USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. sponsors Discover Your Ancestors, which also has a digital edition, the Periodical, published online every month at

The 4th annual print edition of Discover Your Ancestors available from March 2015 is a unique collection of original articles, written by experts, on a wide range of family and social history themes. Inside readers will find a wealth of information and inspiration, helping them to trace ancestors back through time and understand what their lives were actually like. In addition to an exclusive cover story about Daniel Craig’s ancestry, Issue 4 is packed with almost 200 pages, with well over 30 features covering everything from medieval records to life in a Victorian asylum, from DNA research to the history of spa towns. is a family-run business that offers online access to a wealth of historical sources, including census returns, birth, marriage and death indexes, parish records, nonconformist registers, wills, military records and more. Sister company S&N Genealogy Supplies was founded in 1992 and was the first firm to publish UK census data to CD at a time when few homes owned a computer. offers popular talks and advice at the Who Do You Think You Are? Live event, which will take place this year at Birmingham NEC on 16th–18th April. To find out more go to

Laura Berry is a freelance family historian, archive researcher and writer best known for her contributions to television genealogy programs. Find out more about her work at


Kenneth Breen, ‘Burnaby, Sir William (c.1710–1776)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004; online edn, Jan 2008 [, accessed 27 March 2015]

[2] George Crabb, Universal Historical Dictionary, 1833 [, accessed 27 March 2015]

[3] M. Charles Read, 1564-1621, Daniel Chamier: Journal de son voyage à la cour de Henri IV en 1607 et sa biographie, 1858 [, accessed 27 March 2015]