Got a TV Licence?

You need one to watch live TV on any channel or device, and BBC programmes on iPlayer. It’s the law.

Find out more
I don’t have a TV Licence.


  1. 9:15am: Communities, Equality and Local Government Committee.
  2. The Welsh Assembly sits from 13.30pm, the first item on the agenda was questions to the education minister.
  3. Next: Questions to the Minister for Education.
  4. Next: Questions to the Minister for Economy.
  5. Next: Conservatives Debate.

Live Reporting

By Anwen Lewis and Alun Jones

All times stated are UK

  1. Nos da

    That's it from us at Cardiff Bay this week, join us again on Tuesday 16 June.

    Nos da!

  2. Reply

    The Deputy Minister for Health, Vaughan Gething is replying to the debate.

    He says "we recognise there are areas for further improvement."

    Vaughan Gething
  3. Gastroenterology

    One in every 210 people in the UK suffer from Crohn's disease according to Mr Roberts.

    He calls for gastroenterology to be higher on the health agenda in Wales.

    Aled Roberts
  4. Short debate

    We have reached the last item of the day, the short debate lead by Aled Roberts on the title 'Gastroenterology - improving awareness and treatment in Wales.'

  5. 'Considerably improved'

    The health minister says the NHS inspection body has made big improvements since it came under fire from AMs.

    Mark Drakeford said Health Inspectorate Wales had made a series of changes in the year following a call for a fundamental review by the assembly's health committee.

    He told AMs: "I'm sure members when they have seen the work that HIW has conducted since the committee's report was published - and they will see that in its annual report which will be published in July of this year - will see that there is a considerably improved position since the committee reported."

  6. 'Not unique'

    "These issues are not unique to north Wales" says Liberal Democrat Eluned Parrott.

  7. Debate

    In their debate, the Liberal Democrats propose that the National Assembly for Wales:

    1. Believes that the current system for ensuring the quality and safety of healthcare services is not fit for purpose and that Healthcare Inspectorate Wales does not fulfil the need for independent inspection of the health system in Wales.

    2. Calls on the Welsh Government to establish a more robust quality assurance system that includes:

    a) scrapping Health Inspectorate Wales and establishing a new inspectorate that is fully independent of the Welsh Government;

    b) appointing a chief inspector for hospitals and healthcare;

    c) introducing clinically-led and peer-reviewed inspections with significant patient input;

    d) supporting staff and patients to use mechanisms for whistleblowing by encouraging a stronger culture of openness and transparency; and

    e) reforming the complaints procedure to ensure greater independence and restore the trust of patients and their families.

  8. Independent inquiry

    Conservative leader Andrew RT Davies calls on the Welsh government to "increase transparency in the inspection and regulation of healthcare providers in Wales by commissioning a full and independent inquiry" into the Welsh NHS.

    Andrew RT Davies
  9. Health Inspectorate Wales

    Last week, the leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats said scrapping Wales' health watchdog should be considered.

    Kirsty Williams said a damning report into Ysbyty Glan Clwyd's Tawel Fan unit in Denbighshire was a "scandal" and that Healthcare Inspectorate Wales (HIW) had failed as the "final backstop and assurance mechanism" to ensure care was "first class".

  10. Moving on

    Members move on to the Liberal Democrat debate on the safety of healthcare services in Wales.

  11. Girls Make a Difference

    In her reply the Minister for Communities and Tackling Poverty, Lesley Griffiths says "following a very successful event we had in south Wales we will be holding a second Girls Make a Difference conference in north Wales in October."

    Lesley Griffiths
  12. 'Unconscious prejudice'

    "It wasn't until after I'd had a family that I started to see these unconscious prejudices" says Liberal Democrat, Eluned Parrott.

    Eluned Parrott
  13. 'Disappointing'

    Rhun ap Iorwerth

    Plaid's Rhun ap Iorwerth leads the debate and says "what's disappointing of course is that such a motion is needed."

  14. Women in the Welsh economy

    An Individual Members debate was held back in January on a similar subject. Back then, three AMs called on the Welsh government not to award contracts or give grants to any company that does not have any female directors on its board.

  15. Plaid Cymru debate

    Members have moved on to the Plaid Cymru debate calling on the promotion of women's full economic participation.

  16. 'Fair and efficient'

    Mr Andrews says "within the context of the devolution settlement for Wales we will consider how we can ensure the local taxation system in the future is fair and efficient."

  17. Pen-blwydd Hapus!

    Pen-blwydd Hapus Nick Ramsay
    Image caption: Pen-blwydd Hapus Nick Ramsay

    Leighton Andrews also wishes Nick Ramsay 'Pen-blwydd Hapus' followed by a tongue in cheek comment, "that may be the last nice thing I say about the Conservatives and their motion today."

  18. Minister's reaction

    Leighton Andrews reacts to Russell George quoting Margaret Thatcher's view that "the public has the right to know what its elected representatives are doing."

    Leighton Andrews
  19. England

    Rhodri Glyn Thomas says the Conservative spokesperson gave the impression that taxpayers in Wales pay more than those in England.

    He said "let us be totally clear about this, Council Tax in Wales represents 89% of the Council Tax in England, on average. That is, it is a great deal less."

    Council Tax
  20. Survey

    In opening the debate, Conservative Janet Finch-Saunders said "having put out a survey" it revealed 63% of people "were not confident where the money goes and how it is spent."

  21. Increase

    Welsh council tax payers pay £84 a year more on average since April. The figure does not include other charges, such as community councils and police precepts.

  22. Council Tax

    Members have moved on to the first debate of the afternoon which is the Conservatives' debate on Council Tax in Wales.

  23. McNulty Report

    Liberal Democrat William Powell asks about the effect of the McNulty Report.

    The independent report, 'Realising the potential of GB rail' was chaired by Sir Roy McNulty and commissioned by the Secretary of State for Transport.

  24. Business Rates

    This follows the Welsh government's extension of Small Business Rates Relief until March 2016, and the continuation of the 2% cap on the business rates multiplier for 2015-16.

    Powers over business rates were fully devolved to Wales on 1 April this year.

  25. Wales Retail Relief scheme

    Labour's Sandy Mewies asks the minister about the Wales Retail Relief scheme.

    In April this year, the minister announced the extension of the Wales Retail Relief Scheme, and an increase in the maximum benefit available to £1,500 in 2015-16.

    Sandy Mewies
  26. Welshpool to Cardiff

    Plaid Cymru's Dafydd Elis-Thomas uses his time to thank the minister "on behalf of all those people travelling from mid and north Wales to Cardiff and back" because he says "at last" it is possible to do the journey on a train from Welshpool to Cardiff and vice versa in 2 hours and 40 minutes.

    Edwina Hart
    Image caption: Edwina Hart

    The minister's reply and face says it all "thank you very much!"

  27. Minister for Economy

    Members have moved on to the second item this afternoon, questions to the Minister for Economy, Edwina Hart.

    Here's a list of the tabled questions.

  28. Schools Challenge Cymru

    Kirsty Williams, leader of the Liberal Democrats is talking about the Schools Challenge Cymru scheme.

    The programme is targeted at "40 Pathways to Success schools facing challenges in their circumstances and stage of development".

    They have all been assigned an adviser, with a proven track record of school improvement.

    For a list of those schools please click here.

    Kirsty Williams
  29. NUT Cymru

    Conservatives' education spokesperson Paul Davies asks about a recent research by NUT Cymru which shows 13 of Wales' 22 authorities have seen a rise in stress induced teacher leave. He asks the minister what he was doing to address this.

    Mr Lewis says he will meet with the leader of NUT Cymru "to talk through the implications."

    Paul Davies
    Image caption: Paul Davies
  30. WESP

    Liberal Democrat Aled Roberts asks what the minister's department is doing to "measure the demand for Welsh medium education, because the last measure is 3 years old."

    The minister replies that members who are concerned should study the development of Welsh in Education Strategic (WESP) Plans in their area.

  31. Hill Review

    In January 2013 the Minister announced the appointment of Robert Hill to undertake the review on the future delivery of education services in Wales.

    For more information click here.

  32. Costs of review

    Plaid Cymru's education spokesperson, Simon Thomas asks the minister for the cost of the Hill Review.

    Mr Lewis answered "I am afraid I will have to write to him in terms of getting to the bottom of figures there."

    Mr Thomas reiterated he had "already asked a written question on this and he told me he couldn't tell me."

    Simon Thomas
    Image caption: Simon Thomas
  33. Lifelong learning

    Labour member Gwyn Price asks the Deputy Minister for Skills and Technology, Julie James about lifelong learning.

    Post 16 learning providers are required to submit data on learners in Wales via the Lifelong Learning Wales Record.

    Gwyn Price
  34. Welsh as a second language

    Conservative member Suzy Davies asks the Education Minister about uptake of Welsh as a second language by students in post-16 education.

    Mr Lewis says the uptake figures are "disappointing and not good enough".

    Suzy Davies
  35. Prynhawn da

    Cardiff Bay

    Welcome back to a sunny afternoon at Cardiff Bay! The Minister for Education, Huw Lewis will start answering members' questions at 13:30.

  36. Back at 13:30

    And that is it for this morning, please join us again at 13:30 for the Plenary session. The first item on the agenda is questions to the Education Minister.

  37. Measures in the bill

    Here is a list of the government's new measures for the bill:

    • allow the Welsh Ministers to put an immediate halt to unauthorised works to scheduled monuments and make it easier for action to be taken against those who have damaged or destroyed monuments;

    • enable authorities to act quickly if a listed building is under threat from unauthorised works and give them greater flexibility in dealing with historic buildings that require urgent works to protect them from further decay;

    • make it easier for owners or developers to create sustainable new uses for unlisted historic buildings by relaxing the conditions for applications for certificates of immunity from listing;

    • create a statutory register of Wales' historic parks and gardens;

    • allow owners of historic assets to negotiate partnership agreements with consenting authorities for a period of years, eliminating the need for repeated consent applications for similar works and encouraging more consistent and coherent management of the buildings or monuments;

    • secure a more stable future for Wales' historic environment records, which provide detailed information and advice on the historic environment to local planning authorities and the public;

    • make existing structures for the designation of nationally important historic assets more open and transparent by introducing formal consultation with owners and establishing a mechanism to review decisions; and

    • establish an independent panel to advise on historic environment policy and strategy at a national level in Wales.

  38. Advisory Panel

    Andrew Marvell "broadly welcomes the introduction of an Advisory Panel" which according to the bill would "advise on historic environment policy and strategy at a national level in Wales."

    Mr Marvell represents his co-witnesses on the current Historic Environment Group.

    Andrew Marvell
  39. Cadw

    Cadw grant-aids aspects of the work of the four regional Welsh Archaeological Trusts which provide a uniform regional archaeological service across the whole of Wales. The trusts were established in the mid-1970s and are dedicated to the effective protection, investigation, recording and promotion of the historic environment of Wales. They are independent limited companies with charitable status.

    They are:

    Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust

    Dyfed Archaeological Trust

    Gwynedd Archaeological trust

    Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust

  40. New witnesses


    Andrew Marvell, Chief Executive, Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust, Paul Belford, Trust Director, Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust, Andrew Davidson, Chief Archaeologist, Gwynedd Archaeological Trust and Ken Murphy, Trust Director, Dyfed Archaeological Trust giving evidence.

  41. Temporary chair

    Mike Hedges

    The committee resumes but the Chair, Christine Chapman, has had to excuse herself temporarily. Mike Hedges has been nominated as temporary chair.

  42. Break

    The committee is taking a short break before moving on to the second evidence session of the morning with the Welsh Archaeological Trusts.

  43. Places of worship

    As it stands, the owners of listed buildings are not under any specific legal obligation to keep their properties in a good state of repair.


    One issue raised by a number of committee members is the risk to places of worship.

    The bill states "The provisions extend the scope of urgent works to occupied and unoccupied buildings alike and remove the restriction that urgent works can only be undertaken on areas of an occupied building not in use."

  44. 30,000

    Mike Hedges

    "There are 30,000 listed structures in Wales" says Labour member Mike Hedges.

  45. HPA

    Witnesses are using the acronym HPA frequently, which stands for Heritage Partnership Agreements.

    According to the Welsh government, "these allow owners of historic assets to enter into voluntary arrangements with consenting authorities to create integrated plans for their management over a period of years.

    "This frees owners and the authorities from the burden of repeated applications for similar works, while encouraging a more consistent and coherent approach to the management of the buildings or monuments".

  46. 'Effective protection'

    The government says "In broad terms, the Bill gives more effective protection to listed buildings and scheduled monuments, enhances existing mechanisms for the sustainable management of the historic environment, and introduces greater transparency and accountability into decisions taken on the historic environment."

    Pontcysyllte Aqueduct Bridge is a world heritage site
    Image caption: Pontcysyllte Aqueduct Bridge is a world heritage site
  47. 'Key aspect'

    Stephen Smith

    "Heritage is a key aspect of the city centre regeneration" says Stephen Smith, Design and Conservation Team Leader, City and County of Swansea.

  48. Historic Environment Bill

    The Historic Environment Bill was introduced by Ken Skates, the Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism.

    According to the Welsh government it forms part of a suite of legislation, policy, advice and guidance that makes important improvements to the existing systems for the protection and sustainable management of the Welsh historic environment.

  49. Witnesses

    Peter Thomas, Chris Llewelyn and Stephen Smith

    Peter Thomas, Chris Llewelyn and Stephen Smith are giving evidence.

  50. Evidence session

    The committee is hearing evidence on the Historic Environment Bill this morning.

    The first witnesses are from the Welsh Local Government Association. the Vale of Glamorgan Council and the City and County of Swansea.

  51. Bore da

    Good morning and welcome to BBC Democracy Live Wales coverage of the Welsh Assembly. The Communities Committee will get underway at 9:15.

    Image caption: Senedd