Welsh developments

Ed George edgeorge at usuarios.retecal.es
Wed Dec 18 09:08:15 MST 2002


These three stories, read together, in fact amount to something
significant.


******


1. More back Welsh self-government

Peter Hetherington, regional affairs editor

Wednesday December 18, 2002

The Guardian

Support for self-government in Wales has risen since devolution was
approved by a wafer-thin majority, giving weight to calls for extra
powers to be transferred from Westminster, according to new research.

In detailed studies on public attitudes since the creation of an
Edinburgh parliament and a Cardiff assembly almost four years ago, the
electoral commission says that while the record of the devolved
administrations has fallen below expectations, particularly in Scotland,
they are still rated higher than Westminster.

[snip]

The commission says its survey data suggest that backing for devolution
has increased since 1997, with support for direct rule from London
falling from 40% to 23% in five years. Moreover, it finds "increasing
support" for the transfer of more powers to Wales, with the proportion
of the electorate in favour of a full-blown Welsh parliament - as
opposed to the current non-legislative assembly - doubling to 39% in
five years.

Full: <http://politics.guardian.co.uk/wales/story/0,9061,862037,00.html
>




2. Welsh standard of living falls behind UK

Dec 18 2002

Catrin Williams

The Western Mail

STANDARDS of living in Wales are falling further behind the rest of
Britain, new figures reveal today.

A study shows that we still earn almost 20% less than the rest of the UK
and that figure is set to slip further by 2004.

[snip]

The Plaid figures are in line with independent forecasts from Cardiff
Business School and 2002 figures which show Welsh workers take home an
average £339.70 a week compared to England's weekly pay packet of
£464.70.

Plaid Cymru's leader Ieuan Wyn Jones said, "If the gap between Wales and
England is widening that has serious implications for public spending in
Wales because we will be raising less taxes to meet that. Rather than
reducing our dependency on Westminster for public spending, we will be
increasing it."

Full:
<http://icwales.icnetwork.co.uk/0100news/0200wales/page.cfm?objectid=12463554&method=full&siteid=50082>




3. Surge in Welsh patriotism says survey

Dec 18 2002

The Western Mail

JUST like Cerys Matthews, more than two thirds of people in Wales wake
up and thank the Lord they are Welsh.

Up to 62% of us consider ourselves Welsh rather than British, according
to a new study by National Statistics.

In England only 57% of those surveyed consider themselves English rather
than British.

Full:
<http://icwales.icnetwork.co.uk/0100news/0200wales/page.cfm?objectid=12462836&method=full&siteid=50082>


*****


The Catatonia song refrerred to in the above, by the way, goes like this
(English translation follows):

Deffrwch Cymry cysgld gwlad y gan
Dwfn yw'r  gwendid
Bychan yw y fflam
Creulon yw'r cynhaeaf
Ond per yw'r don
'Da' alaw'r alarch unig yn fy mron

Every day when I wake up I thank the lord I'm Welsh

Gwledd o fedd gynhyrfodd Gymraes swil
Darganfyddais gwir baradwys Rhyl

Every day when I wake up I thank the lord I'm Welsh



Wake up sleepy Wales, land of song
Deep is the weakness, tiny is the flame
Cruel the harvest, but pure the note
With the melody of the lonely swan in my breast

Every day when I wake up I thank the lord I'm welsh

A feast of mead invigorated a shy Welsh woman
And I discovered the true paradise of Rhyl

Every day when I wake up I thank the lord I'm Welsh

~~~~~~~
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