Wales in 2012 - the year of ...



First, some firsts:

The first Act passed by the Assembly, the first visit by the Welsh government and the Assembly to the Supreme Court in London, the first woman elected to lead Plaid, the first tranche of the Silk Commission's work done and - they hope - not left on a shelf to be dusted in years to come.

Labour flew through the local elections. only to land slightly awkwardly when the very first Police Commissioners were elected.

Definitely not firsts? Floods again, more dire economic predictions, the row over child abuse in North Wales rekindled and Awema, the 19th report in a row from the Wales Audit Office criticising the way the Welsh government deals with grant management.

2012 gave rise to a new double act in Westminster - Smith and Jones. Owen and David will take up the cudgels again come 2013. In Cardiff, the rumoured first shake up of Carwyn Jones' cabinet never came. Will there be one after Christmas, he was asked last week? "There is nothing planned" he said, "though after Christmas is pretty open ended ..."

Differences borne from devolution grew in 2012 - what it is to learn, qualify, teach in Wales and England will diverge all the more in 2013. What it is to fall ill, prevent, treat and care in Wales and England looked increasingly distinctive too.

2013? Feel free to predict what it'll bring.

Until then, a very merry Christmas to you all, with a special mention and an extra glass or two for the cheery lot who've kept the comments flowing all year long.

Nadolig llawen i chi un ag oll a blwyddyn newydd dda!

Betsan Powys Article written by Betsan Powys Betsan Powys Former political editor, Wales

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  • rate this

    Comment number 77.

    #75 'Boxer it is the Law of the land '
    We also have the Children's Commissioner for Wales. I don't recall him drafting a 50 item report which he then passed to the elected representatives with a peromptary timetable to turn the action points into legislation. MH's mandate is perceived to be onwards and upwards for ever. Not equality: not choice but total immersion.

  • rate this

    Comment number 76.

    Hi John. Glad you are with us. Have you read Merri Huws' report? And do you think I am being paranoid in finding her tone profoundly undemocratic ?
    There seems little long-term future in Wales for the Anglophon. And in the still longer term, little prospect of investment by either English or overseas financiers.
    It might be wiser to look at Scottish outcomes before burning too many bridges.

  • rate this

    Comment number 75.

    Humm Boxer it is the Law of the land decided by a Westminster Government and the Law Lords.. So Schools are legally bound to teach it as a core subject. So 'Commissar Huws' is only stating the facts as the law stands. learning another language is always useful. If nothing else it helps you to understand and learn about the culture it belongs to. It is not just about getting jobs

  • rate this

    Comment number 74.

    #49 'you do not have the right to stop others from being taught their birthright.'
    Nor would I seek such a right. But why does Commisar Huws decide that she has the right to decide to over-ride the views of the parents who decide rationally that learning Welsh is neither useful nor the birthright of their child ?? Welsh provision for the parents that want it? Yes ! Welsh-medium for all ? No!!

  • rate this

    Comment number 73.

    ... "the hardship of the Valleys", MG is ill-informed, was directly related to size, the size of the coal seams and the decision not to follow the continental dram size (much larger), the consequences for the South Wales mines was to become uneconomic. This many decades before coal from Australia and SA destroyed British coal, with the help of Arthur Scargill.


Comments 5 of 77


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