The State of the Union

By Tim Le Couilliard, Newgate Public Affairs A Panelbase poll published today has confirmed what many Conservative ministers have been fearing: that the Union of the four nations in the United Kingdom is looking more and more fragile.  Early in the lockdown there was a suggestion, first mooted by Wales’ First Minister Mark Drakeford that…

Letter from … Cardiff

By Siân Jones, Associate Partner Wales’ long incarceration came to an end this week. Well, almost. After weeks of being confined to a five-mile radius of our homes, beauty spots such as Pembrokeshire, Snowdonia and the Brecon Beacons are now open to visitors. Cardiff Airport has finally reopened. The virus appears to be in retreat,…

Letter from… Cardiff

By Sian Jones, Associate Partner Temperatures are rising, spring flowers are in full bloom, the sun is sparkling on the sea, but Wales remains resolutely closed to all comers – with little prospect of that changing any time soon.  Opinion on Wales’ continuing strict lockdown is divided. With scientists raising concerns about a ‘second wave’…

Our choirs have been silenced – but we need them more than ever

By Siân Jones, Associate Partner “Thro’ all the tumult and the strifeI hear the music ringing;It finds an echo in my soul—How can I keep from singing?” For all those who love choral singing, the words of Robert Wadsworth Lowry’s hymn have felt particularly apt during this pandemic.  It was recently revealed that 45 members…

The Welsh Assembly is dead – long live ‘Senedd Cymru-Welsh Parliament’

By Siân Jones, Associate Partner The National Assembly for Wales is dead and buried. On 6 May, exactly a year before the next set of Welsh elections, its name officially became ‘Senedd Cymru-Welsh Parliament’. The throes of a global pandemic are not the best circumstances for making such an announcement, but it was unavoidable: the…

Letter from… Cardiff

By Siân Jones, Associate Partner Walking at sunset along the promenade of my little seaside town, just outside the Welsh capital, it almost feels like a normal spring evening. Almost. Strings of white lights cast a shimmering reflection on the sea. A new fish and chip shop, its tantalising scent wafting across the beach, draws…

Pressure on the UK Government as Wales and Scotland reveal lockdown easing plans

By Siân Jones, Associate Partner The Welsh and Scottish Governments have this week begun to set out their blueprints for easing coronavirus lockdown restrictions, continuing the trend of increased policy divergence in the devolved administrations and putting renewed pressure on the UK Government to reveal details of its coronavirus exit strategy.  This morning, Wales’ First…

Devolution confusion sets in as policies diverge

By Siân Jones We are starting to see increased policy divergence between the Welsh Government and the Westminster Government in their approaches to the coronavirus crisis. This week Wales’ First Minister, Mark Drakeford, announced a £1.1 bn package of support for the Welsh economy and public services, which included a £500m crisis fund for businesses,…

Welsh Independence: the sleeping dragon in Sturgeon’s shadow?

By Joshua Bell Welsh Independence. Not a misspelling, nor an accidental replacement of the word ‘Scottish’, and no longer a pipe dream for Welsh-nationalists. It is a movement building significant, yet quiet momentum. As the 2020’s begin, political analysts are consumed by Boris’ mandate, Brexit delivery and the Scottish National Party’s Independence argument. This decade…