HC Deb 20 July 1972 vol 841 cc1087-8


Mr. Gibson-Watt

I beg to move Amendment No. 1048, in page 186, line 25, after 'Wales', insert: 'subject to any alteration of boundaries made under section 64 above'. The intention of the Bill expressed in Clause 256 is that after 1st April, 1974, Wales shall be defined for all statutory purposes as the area of the new counties established under the Bill and that England shall not include any area included in those counties.

However, there might be changes in the boundary between English and Welsh counties after April, 1974, under Clause 64. It is therefore necessary to provide that the definitions of England and Wales in Clause 256 will be subject to any changes made in the boundary between the two countries under Clause 64.

Mr. George Thomas (Cardiff, West)

While I do not want to do an injustice to England in not making sure that she has adequate time to discuss local government, has the Minister of State now announced that in future the argument about Monmouthshire being part of Wales is over, and that this statement makes it clear that Monmouthshire is part of Wales for good and for ever?

Mr. Gibson-Watt

The answer is "Yes".

Mr. Raymond Gower (Barry)

That is a most important announcement. It is quite consistent with the fact that towns with names such as Abergavenny and Llantarnam could not be anything other than Welsh.

Mr. Gerald Kaufman (Manchester, Ardwick)

Am I to take it that an act of annexation of this magnitude is to be carried through a sparsely attended House of Commons on the nod at five minutes to midnight on the same basis as Europe has annexed England? I wish to voice my protest.

Amendment agreed to.

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