Author J.K. Rowling signs autographs for fans during the global premiere of Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows: Part 2, the last film of the series, at Trafalgar Square in London, Britain, July 7, 2011. (Xinhua/Yang Xiaohan)
LONDON, May 13 (Xinhua) -- Britain's self-made billionaires and millionaires make up more than 90 percent of the country's 2018 rich list published Sunday.
The 94 percent of the 1,000 people on the list is made up of self-made entrepreneurs, the highest level ever. It compares with just 43 percent of self-made people who were included in the first list in 1989 when inherited wealth dominated the list.
Businessman Jim Ratcliffe, brought up in a social housing scheme in Manchester, tops the list published in the Sunday Times (ST), with a personal fortune of 21.05 billion pounds (28.5 billion U.S. dollars).
The ST said the tycoon behind the chemical giant,Ineos, epitomises the march of the new wave of self-made entrepreneurs, made of them from humble backgrounds. He has become the first industrialist to head the rich list.
Ratcliffe was fired after just three days from his first job and did not start a business until he was aged almost 40.
Actor Daniel Craig, famed as the movie character James Bond, Secret Agent 007, makes his debut on the list. He and his wife Rachel Welsz have amassed a fortune of 170 million U.S. dollars, becoming the fourth and richest 007 to make the list.
The highest ranked female on the list, Charlene de Carvalho-Heineken, who runs the famous Heineken brewery, has seen her wealth rocket by almost 2.5 billion U.S. dollars in the last year to more than 15 billion U.S. dollars.
Potter magic continues to cast its lucky spell with J.K. Rowling, the writer of the famous Harry Potter series seeing her wealth increase in 2018 by 68 million dollars to 948 million U.S. dollars. Potter's female sidekick, Hermione Granger, played by Emma Watson saw her wealth in the Young Rich list rise by almost 15 million U.S. dollars to 68 million U.S. dollars.
Philip Beresford, who compiled the first 28 rich lists for the Sunday Times credited former Conservative prime minister Margaret Thatcher as the person responsible for encouraging the era of the self-made man and woman.
"Thatcher's children, the new generation of entrepreneurs, were getting going in 1989. She poured the concrete for the foundations of entrepreneurial wealth on which the modern Rich List is built," said Beresford.
Queen Elizabeth II topped the first five Rich Lists, but a decision was taken to exclude the value of the Royal Art Collection. She is now 344th on the list, with a wealth of 60 1 million U.S. dollars.
The new list puts the combined wealth of the richest 1,000 people in Britain at more than 960 billion U.S. dollars. The number of billionaires has gone up by 11 in the past year to 145.
Second on the list are brothers Sri and Gopi Hinduja, based in London where they head a trading empire started by their father in Mumbai in 1914. The brothers, aged 82 and 78 respectively, have a wealth of 28 billion U.S. dollars, up more than 6 billion U.S.dollars over 2017 when they topped the list.