Telegraph obituary headline describes titan of Welsh politics as ‘saviour of a heifer’
A pro-devolution campaigner and titan of Welsh politics was described as the “saviour” of a “heifer” in the headline of his obituary in the Telegraph.
The right-wing London-based paper chose not to refer to the most enduring legacy of Lord Elystan Morgan in the title of the article to mark his passing, aged 88, and instead trivially focused on how he saved a cow from being slaughtered.
The former Labour MP and minster, who was also a candidate for Plaid Cymru at four general elections, led the campaign for devolution in 1979.
On the news of his passing, the First Minister, Mark Drakeford said: “My thoughts are today with Lord Elystan-Morgan’s family following the sad news of his death – a fierce and dedicated campaigner for devolution, who’s tireless work laid the foundations for the Senedd we have today.”
Plaid Cymru MP Ben Lake also paid tribute.
“Ceredigion has today lost one of her brightest sons. Lord Elystan Morgan was a rare figure in the political world: a statesman of intellect and integrity,” he said.
However, the Telegraph went with a different take, with a headline that said: “Lord Elystan-Morgan, lawyer who became a Labour minister and the saviour of a prize heifer – obituary”.
Journalist Andy Bell responded to the obituary headline, saying “Respect is what is needed in an article ‘in memory of’, not childish nonsense like this by the @Telegraph.”
The Telegraph article went on to say: “At Westminster he voiced scepticism over Europe, and pressed for Britain to pull out of the Concorde project.
“Assured by ministers that the Anglo-French supersonic airliner would not cause any ‘unusual noise problems’, he was appalled when a test flight over the Irish Sea in 1970 broke constituents’ windows and caused a cow to miscarry.
“Another cow – a heifer – gave Morgan the biggest headlines of his career. In 1966 Pride Moreta of Thorn, owned by a Cardigan butcher, won the supreme championship at Smithfield.
“Under Show rules she was to be slaughtered for Christmas beef, but thousands of television viewers declared her ‘too beautiful to die’.
“Her owner offered to give her away if the Show commuted the sentence, and Morgan secured a reprieve for her from the Minister of Agriculture, Fred Peart.”
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