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Protests will be ‘footnote’ as King visits Cardiff says Mark Drakeford

16 Sep 2022 4 minute read
Prince Charles and Mark Drakeford at the the official opening of the Sixth Welsh Parliament Senedd Cymru in Cardiff Bay. Credit Huw Evans Agency/Senedd Cymru.

The Welsh First Minister has said that any protests will be a “footnote” to the main proceedings, as the King prepares to visit Wales.

The former Prince of Wales and the Queen Consort will visit Cardiff on Friday, as part of UK-wide visits following the death of the Queen.

A silent protest against the monarchy will take place outside Cardiff Castle at 1pm.

Discussing planned protests during the visit, Mark Drakeford said: “People have a legitimate right to protest and there are a variety of views.

However, he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that this was not the week that such objections and debate needs “to surface”.

“But people have that right and I think it will be exercised with restraint and it will be a footnote to the dominant feelings of the day.”

Mr Drakeford also stressed that he had confidence in the police to deal with protests in a “proportionate” way, amid questions about the handling of demonstrators in other parts of the UK.

“It should be proportionate. It should recognise the rights that people have.

“I have every confidence in the South Wales Police who have dealt with this sort of event many times very successfully.”

‘Identity’

The Welsh First Minister also indicated that he did not expect the new Prince of Wales to follow in the footsteps of his father and learn Welsh.

The King spent nine weeks learning Welsh at Aberystwyth University in 1969.

Mark Drakeford told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that “nobody will be expecting miracles” from Prince William on the language, admitting that it could be a “challenge” to learn as an adult.

“The language is a very important part of Wales, spoken by thousands of people every day as part of their everyday lives. It’s not necessarily the easiest language to acquire later on.

“The incoming Prince of Wales will want to recognise the importance of the Welsh language and the part it plays in shaping the identity of a contemporary Wales.”

He said the Welsh people would understand and “appreciate” any interest in the language show by the prince.

“I don’t think anybody will expect somebody to have a suddenly acquired fluency in the Welsh language.”

“Nobody will be expecting miracles.”

Protest

Bethan Sayed, a former MS for Plaid Cymru and activist said the intention of the protest outside Cardiff Castle was to encourage the Welsh public to consider whether a different future, without the monarchy, was possible.

“As soon as King Charles III decided to announce that Prince William should become Prince of Wales, so soon after the death of the Queen, many of us felt compelled to respond,” she said.

“We must discuss the future of Wales, and what we want that to look like. Support for independence is on the rise, in two weeks a march and rally for independence will be held on the very streets that the new king will travel on.

“We need a National conversation about why the Royal family are born to lead over us. Why are we not fit to govern ourselves? Do we want to have a Wales free of the Monarchy? If so, what can that look like?

“People tell us that now is not the time to discuss this issue, however, when the monarchy passes from the incumbent to a new King, now is exactly the time to discuss this matter. It is about fairness, equality, and the Wales we want to shape for future generations.”

A petition against continuing with the Prince of Wales title has now hit 25,000 signatures, just under a week since it was started.


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Cathy Jones
Cathy Jones
14 days ago

Well that’s it for me. Those are the words I needed to see to know that Cymru is a broken dream …and I can now leave without feeling like I ran away.

I can’t live under a monarchy anymore. I can’t live in a country where people are willing to kowtow to robber-barons and paedophiles, I just can’t. It turns out I do have some shred of morality after all and it won’t allow me to live on the same island as a man with a golden chair when there are children going hungry. I just can’t.

Llefain
Llefain
14 days ago
Reply to  Cathy Jones

💔
I’m sorry you feel you must leave, but you must live in line with your values and I respect you for that.
Don’t leave this comment section though, please.

SundanceKid
SundanceKid
14 days ago
Reply to  Cathy Jones

That is sad. If you can, please stay and fight for your country.

Imagine if every one who is angry about this joined Plaid or Yes Cymru? They would have the resources to mount more meaningful campaigns and would wield more clout.

Support for independence is at an all time high. We have a cost of living crisis, an authoritarian government and an unpopular King.

All the ingredients are there for monumental change. Other countries have done it, no reason why we cannot. We just need to reach out and convince people.

notimejeff
notimejeff
14 days ago

If you’d like to know more about the case for abolition check out republic.org.uk.

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
14 days ago

Eddie Jones’ William Jones, Llangadfan, 1726-1795 must be due a reprint…

Benjiman Angwin
Benjiman Angwin
14 days ago

A note on adult Welsh learners –

Languages are easier for adults as you have lived in how things work. What, 3 years for a baby to get into it? Can’t you talk about milk, toys and shoes after 3 years? I wish HM Prince William well in Cymraeg.

Jack
Jack
14 days ago

I agree that “it’s hard for Prince William to learn” is a poor excuse.

But I’ve been learning as an adult for 6 years and I’m still a long way from fluent. It is hard. Comparing people struggling to learn to babies doesn’t do the language movement any favours.

Benjiman Angwin
Benjiman Angwin
14 days ago
Reply to  Jack

Diolch Jack.
I only mentioned infants to flail the myth it is more a task for adults to learn. Hwyl. B

Kenneth Vivian
Kenneth Vivian
14 days ago

The obscene haste in which the so called Prince of Wales was ordained suggests that now is the time to protest and that Drakeford has hopes of crawling into the house of lords to become more than a political ‘footnote’

hdavies15
hdavies15
14 days ago
Reply to  Kenneth Vivian

Most Labour politicians, even those with strong socialist views, who have held office have aspired to the “Upper House” as a way of topping up their incomes and keeping in some sort of public eye in their later years.

David
David
14 days ago

Is this new Prince going to ask his father KC3 to hand over all Crown Estates assets within Wales to the Welsh Treasury/Government.

Llefain
Llefain
14 days ago

A footnote? Nice.
Sounds like a challenge to be more of an event in future.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
14 days ago

I think spineless Mark Drakeford is mixing the anti-monarchy protesters up with what regard Prince William holds Wales in. I think he means doormat rather than footnote. Wales is something the English royal family uses to wipe their feet on.

#YesCymru 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿✊ #Ymlaen 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿✊

Last edited 14 days ago by Y Cymro
R W
R W
14 days ago

Calling the protesters a mere “footnote” is the ultimate insult from Drakeford, who is showing himself to be the ultimate royalist crawler.

Alan Jones
Alan Jones
14 days ago

Once again Mark Drakeford spouts the line that no debate should be taking place at this time regarding the issue of a republic in this country but fails to call out Carlo & the rest of the establishment over the indecent haste they announced the new roll for wills. As far as the so called called Tory government are concerned well, no time to debate the impending financial crises but hey, time to remove the bankers cap on bonuses. I can see that once all this obscene nonsense is over the debate on the issue will be swept under the… Read more »

Steve Duggan
Steve Duggan
14 days ago

Charles announcing a new PoW so early brought the issue to the fore. It could have been left for another time. In being so hasty he has further ignited the Welsh independence movement. Being ignorant of our thoughts and feelings has consequences. Now is the right time for a real discussion, in Cymru, on our future.

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