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Tory MS calls for Welsh Government to take responsibility for making coal tips safe

21 Oct 2021 2 minute read
Coal tip. Tylorstown in February 2020. Credit: Rhondda Cynon Taf CBC

A Conservative MS says the Welsh Government must take responsibility for making coal tips in Wales safe.

Last week the government confirmed 327 tips at 2,456 sites across the country are classified as higher risk and has called for funding from Westminster to help make them safe.

In September Finance and Local Government Minister Rebecca Evans said the UK Government had a “legal and moral responsibility” to step up because it is a pre-devolution issue and said it should use this autumn’s Spending Review to share responsibility and allocate long-term funding.

It has been estimated that at least £500m to £600m will be needed over the next 10 to 15 years.

Speaking in the Senedd, Welsh Conservative Shadow Minister for Climate Change, Janet Finch-Saunders MS, said that with, “potential heavy rainfall set for Wales this winter, residents and businesses need assurances that measures are being taken promptly to safeguard them.

‘Proactive’

“Our communities deserve a Welsh Government which is honest about its responsibilities and proactive in its protection of those at high risk. Yet, whilst inspections on higher-risk tips have now commenced, the Welsh Government continues to argue over where the funding needed is going to come from,” she added.

“It is the provisional view of the Law Commission, in their consultation paper, that coal tip safety falls within devolved competence. It is time that the Welsh Government accept and agree with this view.”

Based on information from the Coal Authority, the Welsh Government has estimated that more than 40 per cent of all the UK’s coal tips are located in Wales and around one in seven of these are classed as high risk.


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Cai Wogan Jones
Cai Wogan Jones
11 months ago

This seems to me to be a very reasonable suggestion.

Of course, by the same logic, Westminster should transfer to the Welsh Treasury the net present value of all of the tax revenues derived from the exploitation of Welsh coal resources over the last 200 years.

Wrexhamian
Wrexhamian
11 months ago

The nationality of a minority of 19th-Century mine owners (i.e. the Welsh mine-owners) is irrelevant insofar as the beneficiaries of the Welsh coal industry were the Westminster empire-building project and the London financial hub. If it would help, perhaps the WG might agree to pay for making former Welsh-owned mines safe, while Westminster paid for the English-owned ones.

Ownership isn’t the issue here, though; this is about humiliating the Welsh Government as much as about saving Westminster money for clearing up its mess.

Cai Wogan Jones
Cai Wogan Jones
11 months ago
Reply to  Wrexhamian

Westminster’s claim to the tax revenues has nothing to do with ownership of the coal resources.

Last edited 11 months ago by Cai Wogan Jones
Ieuan Evans
Ieuan Evans
11 months ago
Reply to  Wrexhamian

May I suggest that you read about the Marquis of Bute.

Wrecsam Ian
Wrecsam Ian
11 months ago
Reply to  Wrexhamian

Nationality does matter.

Many Welsh people made riches and good money from coal mining.

No one made anything other than their wages when they were nationalised.

So many private owners such as the Vivians and Talbots became very wealthy from them.

In terms of the devolution agreement, these tips became the Welsh Government’s responsibility.

The UK has the other 60% of mine tips to deal with…now where might they be?

Gareth
Gareth
11 months ago

Should the Wales Gov pay compensation to the victims of the Titanic. It was carrying 5892 tons of coal from Lewis Merthyr colliery, coal which would be the responsibility of the Wales Gov. These tips were there long before the Senedd.

Marc
Marc
11 months ago

‘Chiefly in Welsh ownership’ ? Utter tosh!

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
11 months ago

As usual we get ones defending the indefensible. I feel so sorry for you. Your ancestors are crying in their graves, some no doubt laying alongside the 266 men & boys killed in Gresford colliery disaster due to lack of health & safety. Shame on you!

Are you aware that Wales until 1999 were soley ruled by Whitehall, and it’s they who gave licenses for mining who benefitted financially from the exploitation of Welsh coalfields. Duw? 🙄

Last edited 11 months ago by Y Cymro
Wrecsam Ian
Wrecsam Ian
11 months ago
Reply to  Y Cymro

The subject here is that responsibility for coal tips was devolved to the Welsh Government.

So instead of accepting that, everyone on here seems to be behaving like every single mine death in Wales was a result of the “the English”.

Welsh owners owned mines; Welsh chargehands did good and bad things in terms of safety.

So are you suggesting that mining was a means of implementing slavery and genocide by the English and that had Wales been a sovereign state not one human being would have died?

Dafydd ap Robart
Dafydd ap Robart
11 months ago

Beth sylw ffraeth.
Mae’n amlwg nad ydych yn ymwybodol ei bod heddiw bum deg pump o flynyddoedd ers trychineb Aberfan.

Wrecsam Ian
Wrecsam Ian
11 months ago
Nid rydym yn siarad am Aberfan, rydym yn siarad am Lywodraeth Cymru
Hogyn y Gogledd
Hogyn y Gogledd
11 months ago

Why do I despise tories?

Let me count the ways…………………..

Kerry Davies
Kerry Davies
11 months ago

The Welsh government had to bail out the Westminster shower over Aberfan and these tips were created in pursuit of private and nationalised profits which all went directly to London.
She is just making an arse of herself with this level of ignorance.

BigPooba
BigPooba
11 months ago
Reply to  Kerry Davies

That is so wrong.

Andrew
Andrew
11 months ago

Perhaps the welsh taxpayers money funding England’s new high speed rail project should be withheld to make our communities safe.

Ieuan Evans
Ieuan Evans
11 months ago

I don’t know what drives people like her. Following the Abefan disaster immediate steps should have been taken to ensure the security of these tips. After all the tips were the after effect of the drive to power the British economy and as such was the responsibility of Westminster. To divert attention and financial responsibility to the Senedd is totally immoral. Successive Westminster Governments have failed to address the issue, which is shameful.

Gareth
Gareth
11 months ago

I find it rather apt, according to the Tories,that the responsibility of the coal tips rests with the Welsh taxpayer, just as HS2 is the responsibility of the Welsh tax payer. Is there a Tory MS out there that can come up with another thing we should pay for, Trump’s wall, Colombia’s national debt, or historically, the pyramids or the great wall of China. It is now farcical the things these Tories are coming out with.

BigPooba
BigPooba
11 months ago

Devolution – when it suits.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
11 months ago

The treachery of our Tory Senedd members knows no bounds. Their attitudes are below contempt and stick to high hell.

Their beloved British State damaged our still beautiful country resulting in the deaths of many, including 148 at Aberfan which 116 were children, and they call for the Senedd & Welsh Taxpayer to pay make safe hundreds of highly dangerous coal tips Whitehall bloody caused is breathtaking! 🤬

GW Atkinson
GW Atkinson
11 months ago

No no no no. The English government can pay for their mess. We didn’t have a government while they were digging up our natural resources. This is their mess, they need to fix it.

Wrecsam Ian
Wrecsam Ian
11 months ago
Reply to  GW Atkinson

When was the English government doing this?

Many mine owners were Welsh, the people who mined it were Welsh, the people who had the good engineering and management jobs were Welsh?

Gareth
Gareth
11 months ago
Reply to  Wrecsam Ian

The coal industry was nationalised on 12th july 1946, with former owners compensated with UK Gov stock, to demonstrate to people that the coal industry belonged to the country. The Senedd was established in 1999, how can you argue that the mess from the NCB is now the responsibility of the Senedd. The country that made the mess should pay to clear the mess, Westminster has a debt to pay, and they need to honour it.

Wrecsam Ian
Wrecsam Ian
11 months ago
Reply to  Gareth

No one is arguing anything. The ownership of the land and the responsibility was devolved to the Senedd. So there must have been agreement and negotiation.

The coal industry wasn’t nationalised to demonstrate anything. One of the main reasons was the unsafe and unprofitable operations of many of the private concerns.

Gareth
Gareth
11 months ago

Appeasement of Westmister seems to be the aim of every statement uttered by a Tory in the Senedd. If this should come at a cost to the people and government of Wales, then, so be it, but the London boot must be licked.

R W
R W
11 months ago

It’s time this argument was settled in court. I suspect the Westminster Government wouldn’t have a leg to stand on.

Dai Rob
Dai Rob
11 months ago

Tory pig!!!!!!!

Owain Morgan
Owain Morgan
11 months ago

Once again a Tory doesn’t those who profit from something should take responsibility for it 🙄😒

hdavies15
hdavies15
11 months ago

This woman is engaging in persistent repetitive sh*t stirring of the worst kind. She knows very well that all those tips were accumulated pre- devolution. She is also well aware that the present settlement from Westminster contains no provisions for rectification of historical mismanagement of government owned industry or its environs. However she is obsessed with being seen by Westminster Tories as an ally rather than focussing on how Wales has been dealt a shabby hand for years with a particularly nasty downturn over the last 5-10 years. Boris might as well have sent a preprogrammed robot to do her… Read more »

Quornby
Quornby
11 months ago

Funny the Tories never mention the beneficiaries of resource rape when it comes to paying for their neglect.

ArgolFawr
ArgolFawr
11 months ago

There is something quite obtuse about this lady or she’s no more than a saboteur on a mission to tear down Wales. Which party does she represent again?

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