LATEST MAGAZINE ARTICLES

Wales votes 'Yes' on Devolution referendum

The National Assembly for Wales will have primary legislative powers as 63.5% voters say 'Yes' in the 3 March 2011 Referendum.

The National Assembly for Wales will have primary legislative powers as 63.5% voters say 'Yes' in the 3 March 2011 Referendum.

With a turnout of just 35.2%, 517,132 Welsh voters (63.5%) said 'Yes' in the referendum on direct law-making powers for the Welsh Assembly. 297,380 voters (36.5%) voted against.

The new Devolution settlement approved by the 2011 Referendum does not actually bring further policy areas for which the Assembly is already responsible, but simplifies and streamlines the law-making process in Wales.

As a result of the previous Welsh Devolution Referendum of 1997 and the Government of Wales Act of 1998, the Welsh Assembly had only limited powers to make laws on 20 policy fields such as agriculture, education, the environment, health, housing and transport.

Before the Welsh laws could be enacted, the Welsh Assembly had first to ask the UK Parliament in London for its agreement on a case-by-case basis.

Following the result of the 3 March 2011 Referendum, laws affecting Wales in the 20 devolved policy fields will now be made and enacted in Wales, and the Welsh Assembly will no longer need to obtain the agreement from London for law-making powers on a case-by-case basis.

The new devolution settlement is expected to save money and make government more efficient as Welsh laws are now enacted directly by the Welsh institutions and no longer have to be sent to England to be signed off.

Welsh political leaders gathered in the Senedd in Cardiff Bay, the National Assembly's debating chamber, to celebrate the Referendum result.

First Minister of Wales Carwyn Jones said "This is a historic day for Wales... Today an old nation came of age."

Search the Magazine

POPULAR IN THE SOCIAL MEDIA

Celtic Countries is the online magazine for people who enjoy the Celtic nations, their natural splendour, culture, and lifestyles.

Subscribe to the Newsletter

Sign up for our monthy Celtic Countries Magazine email newsletter for the latest stories from our website.