Independence Index

Your in-depth guide to Welsh independence.


The big news from the National Assembly of Wales.


Politics and developments from Bridgend County.


Coverage of proposed Welsh Bills and laws.

Committee Inquiries

All the major inquiry reports from the National Assembly's committees.

Election 2015

Coverage and analysis of the 2015 House of Commons election.

Monday, 20 April 2015

Westminster 2015 : The Manifestos Part II

Following yesterday's look at the party manifestos (linked above), today it's the turn of the Lib Dems, Plaid Cymru and UKIP.

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Westminster 2015 : The Manifestos Part I

The following two posts are the most important of the lot this election campaign : What are we voting for in May? Or, more accurately, what might be on the table during negotiations in the event of a hung parliament?

Friday, 17 April 2015

Westminster 2015 : The BBC Challengers Debate

(Pic : The Mirror)

The second of the main TV debates of Election 2015 was held last night, this time consisting of the opposition party leaders – so no David Cameron bwark-bwark-bwark-bwaaaark or Nick Clegg, which damaged the legitimacy a little bit.

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

I Lost My Vote to a Hardship Trooper

Up and down the country, activists are joining up to fight for the future – "I'm doing my part!" Are you? Join up and save Wales from a whole host of threats splashed over the front page of the local rag. Serving The Party guarantees suzerainship!

Saturday, 11 April 2015

More details on Bridgend "Cultural Trust" revealed

Further details are set to be provided to Bridgend councillors regarding proposals for a charitable
not-for-profit trust to run cultural services - like Bryngarw House (above) - in Bridgend county.
(Pic :

As you can probably tell, the election's the only game in town at the moment. I'm sure many of you are as bored with that as I am but it means it'll probably be quiet on here for a few weeks.

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Dear Vaughan....

(Pic : Wales Online)
Although AMs are still on recess for another fortnight or so, and attentions are firmly-focused on the Westminster campaign, it's worth briefly returning to the National Assembly – though a bit later than I otherwise would have – and what's become a thorn in Labour's side : Welsh ambulance services.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Westminster 2015 : The Key Issues in Wales

What are likely to be the main issues for Welsh voters?
(Pic : Click on Wales)

The first debate's out of the way, I've given my verdict on the Coalition and the manifestos are going to be released over the next few weeks (I'll look at them in more detail once their all out, though UKIP are dragging their heels by the looks of it) - which means it's time to focus on some of the issues that might be fought over in Wales.

Friday, 3 April 2015

Westminster 2015 : The ITV Leaders Debate

The big debate has been held, and here's a run down of how the leaders did.
(Pic : ITV)

I'll only count this and the BBC opposition debate on on 16th April as "debates" because they're....actual debates. I'm not going to count the Question Time and Daily Politics specials or the interviews. I don't know if there are Wales-only debates planned over the next few weeks (as 2010), but if there are I'll cover them too.

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Whatever happened to the Natural Law Party?

They promised us "bubbling bliss", so where are our yogic flying heroes today?
When I were t'lad, whenever party political/election broadcast season came around, there was one I would always look forward to.

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

WAG/Election Watch - March 2015

  • Welsh Secretary, Stephen Crabb, described the Welsh Government's rejection of a referendum on income tax powers as “bizarre”, saying he “moved mountains” to secure the St David's Day agreement on extra powers for Wales.
    • The First Minister told the National Assembly the deal was “rushed, incoherent and unsatisfactory” and was “no more than a staging post” to a better devolution settlement. Labour also denied that Shadow Welsh Secretary, Owen Smith, was blocking further devolution.
  • A new GP contract was agreed between the Welsh Government and General Medical Council, meaning more repeat prescriptions and appointments could be offered online, while GPs will be given more treatment time with vulnerable patients. Health Minister, Mark Drakeford (Lab, Cardiff West), said the new contract, “places more trust and reliance on the professionalism of GPs”.

Monday, 30 March 2015

Putting Bridgend Up On Bricks

Bridgend Council's Children's Committee have raised concerns
about the latest proposals for changes to home-school/college transport.
(Pic : Wales Online)

Once again, it's time to look at some of the key items on the agenda of Bridgend Council's (BCBC) latest cabinet meeting, which is due to be held tomorrow. They all have a "wheel" theme.

Saturday, 28 March 2015

Westminster 2015 : How have the Coalition performed?

As of Monday, every MP will be unemployed and scrounging for votes. So it's fitting
to kick them when they're down, as the Cameron administration know all about that.
(Pic :

With the formal dissolution of the UK parliament coming on Monday, the time's come to kick-start my coverage of the 2015 House of Commons election.

Friday, 27 March 2015

Rust in Peace....Trident?

What should the UK spend a potential £80billion+ on?
(Pic : Greenpeace)

Back to back coverage from the Assembly. Yes, I do regret it. If yesterday was a little dry, this one was more lively.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Assembly takes a ride on Heavy Metal

Heavy metal? Or no metal at all?
(Pic : Paul Webb via
The last plenary session before Easter recess was held yesterday, and I've picked out two debates to cover. Today, I'll look at a members debate on the steel industry, while the Assembly also went south of heaven - I'll (hopefully) return to that tomorrow.

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Gissa Job : Assisting Young People Into Work

An Assembly committee has investigated the barriers facing young people as they enter the
world of work, as well as assessing Welsh Government actions to reduce youth unemployment.
(Pic : The Guardian)
Another tome, I'm afraid. All part of the service.

Last week, the Enterprise & Business Committee published their report into how young people find  work (pdf). This is particularly important as quoted statistics underline how hard young people have been hit by the recession - up to 18% of 18-24 year olds were unemployed in 2014 compared to just 4.4% of 35-49 year olds.

Saturday, 21 March 2015

Legally High

Earlier this week, the National Assembly's Health & Social Care Committee published their inquiry report (pdf) into new psychoactive substances (aka. NPS, "legal highs"). It was an extensive and wide-ranging inquiry which took evidence from a huge list of witnesses and focus groups around Wales.

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Senedd Goes For Broke

Fixed-odds gaming terminals and online gambling were in the sights of
AMs during the latest members debate at the National Assembly.
(Pic : The Mirror)

There will be no Casino Royale jokes. Hopefully that "row" has burned itself out at last. It was light-hearted at first, but watching AMs and the media scramble over each other to be the most outraged was like being strapped into a bottomless chair and taking a pounding to the balls.

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

The Green, Green Glas of Home

The National Assembly's Public Accounts Committee have said that while the Glastir
scheme is well-intentioned, there are problems with how it's been managed.
(Pic : Nanhoron Estate)
I don't normally cover farming issues, mainly because such posts often go unread and I don't know anything about farming in the first place.