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Boris Johnson could ‘level up’ Wales by transferring £500m Crown Estate to Welsh control says MP

20 Oct 2021 3 minutes Read
Boris Johnson. Picture by Cancillería Argentina (CC BY 2.0). Gwynt y Môr wind-farm and the Conwy river. Picture by Dunnock_D (CC BY-NC 2.0).

The Prime Minister could ‘level up’ Wales by transferring the £500m Crown Estate to Welsh control, an MP has said.

Liz Saville Roberts MP urged Boris Johnson to support her Crown Estate (Devolution to Wales) Bill, which would “bring half a billion pounds worth of offshore wind and tidal stream potential under Welsh control”.

The Crown Estate is a collection of lands and holdings in the United Kingdom belonging to the British monarch. It is already devolved to Scotland but powers over the management of Crown Estate in Wales are still held in Westminster, and the revenues proceed directly to the UK Government’s Treasury.

The value of the Crown Estate Wales’ renewable assets grew from £49.2m in 2020 to £549.1m in 2021, but that wealth was hoarded in the south east of England, Liz Saville Roberts said.

She urged the Prime Minister to put his ‘levelling up’ rhetoric into action by using the upcoming COP26 climate summit in Glasgow to “entrust the people of Wales with the means to manage our offshore wind and tidal resources for everyone’s benefit”.

Speaking in the House of Commons today, Liz Saville Roberts said: “If COP26 is to be successful, people must be at the heart of our net zero mission. For too long, the UK economy has left too many people behind while wealth and investment hoarded in the south east of England.

“Devolving powers over the Crown Estate would bring half a billion pounds worth of offshore wind and tidal stream potential under Welsh control – assets currently controlled by Westminster. Scotland, meanwhile already has these powers.

“Will he support my Bill to devolve the management of the Crown Estate to Wales?”

‘Entrust’

The Prime Minister however responded by saying that the Crown Estate would not be devolved.

“As the right hon. Lady already knows, the Crown Estate works closely with the Welsh Government and Natural Resources Wales,” he said.

“I am sorry to have to tell her that my view is that the devolution of the Crown Estate in Wales would fragment the market, complicate existing processes and make it more difficult for Wales, as well as the whole UK, to move forward to net zero.”

Speaking after the session, Liz Saville Roberts said: “Boris Johnson talks the talk on ‘levelling up’, but this is little more than an election slogan.

“If he truly believed in rebalancing the economy, he would entrust the people of Wales with the means to manage our offshore wind and tidal resources for everyone’s benefit.”

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Gareth W
Gareth W
1 month ago

The definition of insanity, doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Asking Westminster (especially the Tories) to devolve more power to Wales and expecting them to do it, or even acknowledge it in many cases.

Ed Jones
Ed Jones
1 month ago

2021 and there is still a royal family in England – sad. Nothing against them, but surely they have had their day?!

Mawkernewek
1 month ago
Reply to  Ed Jones

The royal family themselves are only incidental to this discussion. If the UK became a republic then the Crown Estate would just become the UK Government Estate, and Wales not necessarily any better off.

GW Atkinson
GW Atkinson
1 month ago

No, I would prefer Wales to control that particular piece of land on OUR SOIL.

j humphrys
j humphrys
1 month ago

Johnson says No. We say Yes Cymru!

Mr Williams
Mr Williams
1 month ago
Reply to  j humphrys

That’s a brilliant slogan. We should use that.

Steve Duggan
Steve Duggan
1 month ago

Forget more powers from Westminster, focus on gaining independence asap instead. We can then deal with the Crown Estates as we wish with no interference.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
1 month ago

Although I commend Plaid Cymru’s Liz Saville Roberts bill. Anything that requires Conservative Boris Johnson & idiocracy devolving anything that takes money away from his English establishment, would only happen if hell froze over, and I can’t see Whitehall defrosting anytime soon.

The Tories only take from Wales never give back. And the only way Wales will get back control of our country, is to become an independent nation once again.

#YesCymu 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿👍. #Ymlaen 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿👍 #FreeWales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿👍 #Cymru 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿❤️. #Unionism 🇬🇧👎

Last edited 1 month ago by Y Cymro
Rhosddu
Rhosddu
1 month ago

Right-wing BritNat types sometimes visit Nation.Cymru in order to object to the use of the world “colonialism” in relation to the position of Wales. Let’s see them object their way out of this one.

Wrecsam Ian
Wrecsam Ian
1 month ago
Reply to  Rhosddu

Even better , I will read the article for you:. The Prime Minister however responded by saying that the Crown Estate would not be devolved. “As the right hon. Lady already knows, the Crown Estate works closely with the Welsh Government and Natural Resources Wales,” he said. “I am sorry to have to tell her that my view is that the devolution of the Crown Estate in Wales would fragment the market, complicate existing processes and make it more difficult for Wales, as well as the whole UK, to move forward to net zero.” Will Liz Saville Roberts ever have… Read more »

Barbara Jones
1 month ago
Reply to  Wrecsam Ian

Liz Saville Roberts has more intelligence and politcsl awareness in her smallest toe than most of the Westminster government have in their heads.

Wrecsam Ian
Wrecsam Ian
1 month ago
Reply to  Barbara Jones

I’ll take your word for it.

Maybe she will campaign for the people who were nearly burnt to death in their own homes in riots a little more than people who don’t like the English a little more in future.

Quornby
Quornby
1 month ago

“could” but won’t.

Mawkernewek
1 month ago

What Boris Johnson means, is that Wales is needed for offsetting projects not only for its own carbon emissions, but for England’s too.

R W
R W
1 month ago

The Tories’ disdain for Wales seems to know no bounds. Just another reason why we need independence.

Shan Morgain
1 month ago

Only a week or two ago Drakey asked for devolution of police powers (I think that was it). The answer was no. Now this. The Tories are dead et against more devolution and in fact want to claw some of it back. I think they are going to drive us to independence when devo-max would otherwise be possible.

Wrecsam Ian
Wrecsam Ian
1 month ago
Reply to  Shan Morgain

Not 100% correct. The response was that he needed to address bad performing areas within the remit of his own powers such as health and education.

Crime has gone down during lockdown.

The challenge that the UK government has at the moment with Scotland, and especially Wales, is that they are requesting more devolved powers but palpably underperforming in ones that are devolved.

Asking for more powers impresses retired nationalists or ones that are at home on health benefits reading nationalist websites.

Peforming helps poor people.

Not much of the latter.

Wrexhamian
Wrexhamian
1 month ago
Reply to  Wrecsam Ian

You’re right in that the WG has consistently over-funded the Third Sector and been torpid over the holiday home crisis, as well as being profligate in its funding of conmen from outside the country, and allowing Jane Davidson to facilitate a acquisition of Welsh land for OPDs. But much of their underperformance since 1999 has been because of the weakness of devolved powers and the restrictions imposed on those powers by Westminster. Hopefully the forthcoming constitutional debate will result in greater efficacy for devolved powers, but I can’t see the Westminster Government budging a millimeter over this.

Cai Wogan Jones
Cai Wogan Jones
1 month ago

“What? You must be joking. We conquered it, and we are keeping it.”

Dafydd
Dafydd
1 month ago

Its this kind of attitude from Westminster that converted me from semi devo happy to full blown independence at all costs – there is absolutely no other option open to us. They stole our land and wont give it back, its too valuable to them in terms of carbon offsetting. Just like water and electricity, offsetting land (much Crown estate is open common / peat bogs) is another resource we could use to make ourselves a viable independent nation. Offcourse Liz S R knew this would be the response from the Ignaramus-in-chief, but each time these quazi criminals deny us… Read more »

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
1 month ago

Great Idea but I suspect Liz and I are the only ‘old romantics’ on here…

Quornby
Quornby
1 month ago

Alternatively become a sovereign state and to hell with the talentless gang running England and robbing us.

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