UK Gov advised against Queen opening Assembly because it would be ‘wholly subordinate’ to Westminster
The UK Government originally advised against the Queen attending the opening of the Welsh Assembly if the people of Wales voted for it because it would be “wholly subordinate” to Westminster.
A Home Office official said that as the Assembly would not be able to make laws at the start it would have no direct relationship with the Monarch.
A newly published letter from a civil servant to the Welsh Office on 19 June 1997 says: “Although it is intended that The Queen or Her representative should formally open the Scottish Parliament, we do not think that the same treatment would be appropriate for the Welsh Assembly, which has no primary legislative functions.”
The letter added that the Queen’s attendance hadn’t been discussed “presumably because it was assumed that as a body wholly subordinate to the Westminster Parliament no question of direct relations with the sovereign would arise”.
The Queen, Prince Phillip and Prince Charles did eventually attend the official opening on 27 May 1999.
Since then she has also opened the new Senedd building in 2006 and the fifth Senedd in 2016.
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