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Welsh Secretary David Davies mocked for suggesting Wrexham is in south Wales

13 Mar 2024 4 minute read
Jo Stevens (L) and David TC Davies. Photo Left David TC Davies. Photo Richard-Townshend-CC-BY-3.0.

Martin Shipton

Welsh Secretary David TC Davies was ticked off by his Welsh Shadow Jo Stevens following a slip of the tongue in which he suggested that Wrexham was in south Wales.

Responding to a question from Wrexham Tory MP Sarah Atherton about the health service in north Wales, Mr Davies said: “The Honourable Lady is absolutely right to raise concerns about the level of healthcare being provided to her constituents in south Wales.” .

Ms Stevens commented: “The Welsh Secretary should spend less time ranting and more time brushing up on the geography of the country he represents in government.

“I can’t believe I have to say this, but Wrexham needs a government that knows where it is! The city will have its chance to back Labour’s Andrew Ranger at the General Election, who has lived in Wrexham for more than 20 years.”


Mr Davies continued his response to Ms Atherton, saying: “What is really shocking is that when the independent commissioners at Betsi Cadwaladr health board raised serious concerns about over £100m being misspent, the Welsh Labour Health Minister called them in and sacked them. “We’re not getting the right level of healthcare in Wales.”

Independent Scottish nationalist MP Angus O’Neill then intervened to say: “The Secretary of State and other Tory MPs bring up a litany of health issues in Wales, but Barnett consequentials [the amount of money allocated by the UK Treasury to the Welsh Government] are a result of health spending in England, and need in England. Has the UK Government ever made any spending decisions on needs in Wales, say on health, and then funded England, Scotland and Northern Ireland as a consequence of Welsh needs? He [Mr Davies] might find that a strange question, because UK decisions are always made on England’s need, and other people get money as a consequence, which is why the likes of Wales is never going to catch Ireland for as long as Wales is in the UK and not independent.”

Mr Davies responded: “In actual fact the Holtham Review [a report on the funding of Wales commissioned by the Welsh Government and published in 2010] looked at what Welsh needs were and calculated that Wales needed an extra 15%. What the UK Conservative government did was then to provide Wales with an extra 20%. So the question still stands – why is it that thousands of people in Wales have been waiting for more than two years for treatment when the Welsh Labour government has been given more money than they actually need to properly fund the health service in Wales?”


The Welsh Government’s position is that inflation has outpaced any funding increase for Wales.

In October 2023 First Minister Mark Drakeford said a funding crisis meant his administration was having to take the unusual decision of making in-year spending cuts.

He said the funding crisis meant the Welsh Government had to find £600m to balance its books between then and April 2024.

Nevertheless, the NHS was prioritised for extra funding, with Mr Drakeford saying:

“In the health field they are facing a lot of people coming through the door every day and they are dealing with the effect of inflation and energy costs, and so on.”

He said extra beds would be made available in the health service over the winter, but there would be fewer than in the previous year.

The government had “worked so hard” to defend services and “concentrate on the most vulnerable people in society,” he said. “It’s impossible to do things like this without having an effect, but we have worked hard to try to reduce that so there won’t be a big effect in people’s everyday lives.”

The Welsh Government budget for 2024-25 also reflects less money from the UK Government being available. While the NHS allocation has again been protected, most other policy areas are facing real terms cuts, with job cuts being implemented in some sectors.

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Dai Ponty
Dai Ponty
1 month ago

Well you should some pity for the boyo bach HE IS NOT THE SHAROEST PENCIL IN THE BOX and like all tory SCUM IF BRAINS WHERE MADE OF CHOCOLATE HE WOULD NOT HAVE ENOUGH TO FILL A SMARTIE or to put another way what would you call a fly inside his head a space invader because he has nothing between his jug handles his big ears

Richard Davies
Richard Davies
1 month ago

“Turn-coat” Davies must have been absent the day brain cells were handed out because he is definitely missing a whole load to be so incredibly stupid regarding geography of Cymru! He is being duplicitous with regard to NHS funding. For the uk as a whole there was roughly a 6.3% annual increase in funding between 99/00 to 09/10, but since then it has been about 1.1% (not including covid) meaning there has been a cumulative underfunding of £322 billion! The tories have never provided the NHS with adequate funding for the uk/england with consequential funding constraints on all devolved governments,… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Richard Davies
Alan Jones
Alan Jones
1 month ago

The furthest TC ventures into Cymru is outside the Grange hospital in Cwmbran for photo opportunities & that’s only because even though the hospital comes under the Aneurin Befan health authority the building stands inside his constituency boundary. He’s right to highlight where he sees public monies being spent wisely or not, but, surely his role is then to highlight to the cabinet in number 10 when there is insufficient funding available & as I’ve stated before, he should be banging on the table for those extra funds to help improve the standard of living for all the people of… Read more »

1 month ago

At least he learned to speak Welsh which is more than can be said for Jo Stevens who, as Welsh Shadow Secretary, has hardly taken any interest in Welsh culture.

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