Not just a passing Krays resemblence
Brothers names echo London’s notorious twins
LEGEND – the film released last week about the Kray twins – will be a must see for one Uxbridge family.
Prison officer James Whelan has 14-year-old twin sons who he named after the brothers, who were infamous for terrorising the East End during the 1960s.
He said he decided to do it because he was so close to his own brother growing up that the pair were nicknamed the Krays.
James, who works at Feltham Young Offenders Institute, named his sons James Kray Whelan and Kai Paul Kray Whelan.
He said: “I had a brother who’s 18 months younger than me. We were always getting in trouble and looked alike.
“My dad died when I was 14 and we were brought up very tight as brothers. We always quickly jumped to the other’s defence and defended each other’s honour.
“We were nicknamed the Kray twins within our football fanzines and we were fascinated with the Krays, so when the opportunity came for me to call my sons the Krays I thought I’d give it a go. Some of my family weren’t too impressed though!
“If I’d have got away with it I would have called them Ronnie and Reggie but my wife just let me give them the middle name Kray.”
Their father says the identical pair, who attend Douay Martyrs School in Hillingdon, have their fair share of similarity to the Krays.
“They’re quite popular and mischievous as twins tend to be and they’re quite a pair of monkeys. They’ve got a serious likeness in their looks to the Krays, so it makes more of an impact.
“They’re very similar as ones a stronger character than the other, they’re both good at maths, both very competitive at football. One’s very cheeky when it comes to the girls, but the other holds back.”
The twins, who are keen footballers and enjoy thinking up moneymaking schemes, says it’s “weird” being named after twins that were so o famous.
They said: “We e know a little bit t about the Krayy twins - that they were famous for being good at boxing.
We love to spar with our Dad but he won’t let us spar with each other and I know they were very close to their mum. They were in prison for a long time, not sure what for but obviously could not of been good.
“People say we look like them - but we definitely will not be going to prison!”
Mr Whelen, Feltham prison officer, says it’s “quite funny” that he started the job 18 months after they were born, and tells prisoners and staff he’s related to the Krays as a joke.
He added: “I try not to promote the (negative side) of the Krays with the twins.
“I try to promote how loyal they were to their mum. I don’t know if they know a hell of a lot about the crime side of it, but they like the razzmatazz and the showbiz side of it.
“They were the real-life movie stars, but they did do bad things. You’re going to have the good and bad with the Krays. So I’m just hopefully promoting the better side of them and avoiding that part, especially with my job. We all know they were not angels!”
Legend, directed by Brian Helgeland, stars actor Tom Hardy as Ronnie and Reggie Kray.
n TWIN THING: Connor James Kray Whelan and Kai Paul Kray Whelan and (below) the poster for Legend, the new Krays film