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Last Updated: Sunday, 18 June 2006, 05:25 GMT 06:25 UK
Beckham praised for father skills
Dr Rowan Williams
Dr Williams said fathers should receive more support
England football captain David Beckham is just as dependable and creative as a father as he is a footballer, according to the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Dr Rowan Williams singled out Beckham's parenting skills along with those of Conservative leader David Cameron.

Dr Williams, in an interview marking Father's Day, said both Davids took fatherhood seriously.

Meanwhile Mr Cameron wrote in the Sunday Times that his family was more important than becoming prime minister.

Robust role models

The archbishop told BBC One's Heaven and Earth programme that too often in modern life children were looked on as little more than commodities.

Nothing is tougher, or will give me greater satisfaction, than raising my children properly
David Cameron

He said there was "quite a history of not having good, robust role models".

But he said it was "rather good that at the moment, from David Cameron through to David Beckham, we've got quite a lot of good public images of fathers taking their fathering seriously".

He said that fathers should receive more support, arguing that fatherhood was "the biggest task that could be laid in front of anybody".

Dependability was the key factor in parenthood, Dr Williams said.

'Greater satisfaction'

Mr Cameron, writing in the Sunday Times, said he loved his job, but "nothing matters as much as my family".

"Nothing is tougher, or will give me greater satisfaction, than raising my children properly," he wrote.

"And it goes without saying that my children couldn't care less whether I become prime minister or not."

Mr Cameron's wife, Samantha, recently gave birth to their third child.

David Beckham and his wife Victoria also have three children, all boys.

The Heaven and Earth Show is on BBC One on Sunday at 1000 BST.

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