The Carneddau are a group of mountains in Snowdonia, Wales. They include the largest contiguous areas of high ground in Wales and England, as well as six or seven of the highest peaks in the country—the Fifteen Peaks; the range encloses a number of lakes such as Llyn Cowlyd and Llyn Eigiau, the Aber Falls waterfalls. It is delimited by the Irish Sea to the north, the Conwy valley to the east, by the A5 road from Betws-y-Coed to Bethesda to the south and west; the area covers about 10 % of the area of Snowdonia. The rocks from which the Carneddau are formed originated in the Ordovician period between 500 and 440 million years ago. At that time, the continental land masses on either side of the Iapetus Ocean were moving together; the friction between these caused the floor of the ocean to melt, volcanoes to form and the land to rise up. This was the origin of the towering mountains that were to become Snowdonia and the other mountain ranges in Central and North Wales. Over time, these mountains have been eroded by the weather and scoured by advancing and retreating ice sheets.
The Carneddau consist of volcanic and sedimentary rock. The last ice sheet retreated about 10,000 years ago, it left behind a landscape of smooth summits above erratic boulders and scree at the foot of cliffs on the eastern side of the mountains, moraines that created shallow lakes in the cwms. This area was first colonised in Neolithic times, when Stone Age farmers started clearing the native forests of oak and birch that covered all but the uppermost ridges and summits, they were followed by Bronze Age people who cleared more forests and erected standing stones across the uplands. There are more than one thousand ancient monuments on the Carneddau estate; the remains of circular stone huts dating back to this time have been found and the cairns on the mountain summits contain cremated human remains from prominent people of this time. On the north western slopes of Drosgl there are clusters of Iron Age huts and three cairns were built on the top of Moel Faban; this settlement endured for a thousand years.
There are other huts elsewhere and traces of field systems and numerous hill forts situated at strategic upland sites. The Romans subdued the area and built a road, Bwlch y Ddeufaen across the northern slopes of the Carnedds. After they left in 410, the land was controlled once again by Welsh princes who schemed and formed alliances among themselves; the clearance of the native forests at one time goats were the main form of livestock. Their feral descendants are still found in the area today on the Glyderau, they were followed by cattle and it was not till the 18th century desire for wool that sheep became numerous. By the thirteenth century, English ambitions were increasing under King Edward I of England in this part of Wales and the English castles encircled Snowdonia; the two highest mountains in the range are named Carnedd Llewellyn and Carnedd Dafydd after the thirteenth-century Prince of Wales, Llywelyn ap Iorwerth or Llywelyn the Great, his grandson Prince Dafydd ap Gruffudd. It was in a bog in the northern foothills of Bera Mawr, at a place called Nanhysglain, that Prince Dafydd ap Gruffudd and his family were captured in June 1283.
In October, Dafydd was executed at Shrewsbury by Edward I and this ended the seven-hundred-year rule of Gwynedd by the family descended from Cunedda Wledig and the end of independence for Wales. Llyn Ogwen was reputed to be the place from which Sir Bedivere failed to draw King Arthur's sword Excalibur. Another legend has it that the two small lakes nestling below the towering cliffs to the east of Carnedd Llywelyn were haunted and that deformed fish with heads but no bodies lurked in their depths. A more recent legend records that the two great boulders known as the "Meini Gwynedd" near the summit of Carnedd Llywelyn were lifted there bodily in 1542 from the banks of one of these lakes. Henry VIII is said to have ordered the investigation of this claim and proclaimed that it was true; the Carneddau are the largest continuous stretch of mountain land over 2,500 feet in the country. They are impressive nevertheless. Much of the higher tops is covered with patches of shattered rocks. Pen-yr-Ole-Wen dominates the Nant Ffrancon pass.
Continuing along the ridge from here Carnedd Dafydd is reached Carnedd Llewellyn and on to various lower summits. To the north and west of the ridge are grassy slopes, while to the east there are some high cliffs, deep valleys and small lakes; the Carneddau range is home to the only population of wild horses in the United Kingdom. The peaks in the central Carnedd ridge are: Pen yr Ole Wen Carnedd Dafydd Carnedd Llewelyn Yr Elen Foel Grach Carnedd Gwenllian Foel-fras In September 2009 the peak referred to as Garnedd Uchaf was renamed Carnedd Gwenllian following a campaign by the Gwenllian Society to honour Princess Gwenllian, the daughter of Llywelyn ap Gruffudd, Prince of Wales; the plants growing on the Carneddau need to be hardy to withstand the snow and gales they will encounter during the year and those found by sheltered streams in the valleys are different from those clinging to crevices on windswept rocks. Sheep graze the mountains and impact the composition of the sward, nibbling out the most succulent young growth.
United Kingdom census, 2011
A census of the population of the United Kingdom is taken every ten years. The 2011 census was held in all countries of the UK on 27 March 2011, it was the first UK census. The Office for National Statistics is responsible for the census in England and Wales, the General Register Office for Scotland is responsible for the census in Scotland, the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency is responsible for the census in Northern Ireland; the Office for National Statistics is the executive office of the UK Statistics Authority, a non-ministerial department formed in 2008 and which reports directly to Parliament. ONS is the UK Government's single largest statistical producer of independent statistics on the UK's economy and society, used to assist the planning and allocation of resources, policy-making and decision-making. ONS designs and runs the census in England and Wales. In its capacity as the national statistics office for the United Kingdom, ONS compiles and releases census tables for the United Kingdom when the data from England and Wales and Northern Ireland are complete.
In the run-up to the census both the main UK political parties expressed concerns about the increasing cost and the value for money of the census, it was suggested that the 2011 census might be the last decennial census to be taken. The first results from the 2011 census and sex, occupied households estimates for England and Wales and Northern Ireland, were released on 16 July 2012; the first results for Scotland, the first UK-wide results, were published on 17 December 2012. More detailed and specialised data were published from 2013; the Registrar General John Rickman conducted the first census of Great Britain's population, was responsible for the ten-yearly reports published between 1801 and 1831. During the first 100 years of census-taking the population of England and Wales grew more than threefold, to around 32 million, that of Scotland, where a separate census has been carried out since 1861, to about 4.5 million. From 1911 onwards rapid social change, scientific breakthroughs, major world events affected the structure of the population.
A fire that destroyed census records in 1931, the declaration of war in 1939, made the 1951 census hugely significant in recording 30 years of change over one of the most turbulent periods in British history. The 1971 census was run by the newly created Office of Population Censuses and Surveys, a body formed by the merger of the General Register Office and Government Social Survey. In 1996 the Office for National Statistics was formed by merging the Central Statistical Office, OPCS and the statistics division of the Department of Employment. In 2008 the UK Statistics Authority was established as an independent body. A population census is a key instrument for assessing the needs of local communities; when related to other data sources such as housing or agricultural censuses, or sample surveys, the data becomes more useful. Most countries of the world take censuses: the United Nations recommends that countries take a census at least once every ten years; the design for the 2011 census reflects changes in society since 2001 and asks questions to help paint a detailed demographic picture of England and Wales, as it stands on census day, 27 March.
Data collected by the census is used to provide statistical outputs which central government uses to plan and allocate local authority services funding, which local authorities themselves use to identify and meet the needs of their local communities. Other organisations that use census data include healthcare organisations, community groups and businesses; the questionnaires, including people's personal information, are kept confidential for 100 years before being released to the public, providing an important source of information for historical and genealogy research. The 2011 census for England and Wales included around 25 million households. Questionnaires were posted out to all households, using a national address register compiled by the Office for National Statistics with the help of local authorities through comparisons of the National Land and Property Gazetteer and the Royal Mail and Ordnance Survey national address products. People could complete and submit their questionnaire online, or fill it in on paper and post it back in a pre-addressed envelope.
Guidance was provided online and through the census helpline. Completed questionnaires were electronically tracked and field staff followed up with households that did not return a questionnaire. Special arrangements were made to count people living in communal establishments such as. In these cases field staff delivered and collected questionnaires and, where needed, provided advice or assistance in completing the questionnaire. There was a legal requirement to complete the 2011 census questionnaire, under the terms of the Census Act 1920; as at 27 March 2011 everyone who had lived or intended to live in the country for three months or more was required to complete a questionnaire. Failure to return a completed questionnaire could lead to a criminal record. Lockheed Martin UK, the UK arm of US-based aerospace, technology company Lockheed Martin was awarded the contract to provide services for the census comprising questionnaire printing, a customer contact centre and data capture and processing.
The contract is valued at £150 million one third of the total £1 million census budget
Cavalier was first used by Roundheads as a term of abuse for the wealthier Royalist supporters of King Charles I and his son Charles II of England during the English Civil War, the Interregnum, the Restoration. It was adopted by the Royalists themselves. Although it referred to political and social attitudes and behaviour, of which clothing was a small part, it has subsequently become identified with the fashionable clothing of the court at the time. Prince Rupert, commander of much of Charles I's cavalry, is considered to be an archetypal Cavalier. Cavalier derives from the same Latin root as the French word chevalier, the Vulgar Latin word caballarius, meaning "horseman". Shakespeare used the word cavaleros to describe an overbearing swashbuckler or swaggering gallant in Henry IV, Part 2, in which Shallow says "I'll drink to Master Bardolph, to all the cavaleros about London". "Cavalier" is chiefly associated with the Royalist supporters of King Charles I in his struggle with Parliament in the English Civil War.
It first appears as a term of reproach and contempt, applied to the followers of King Charles I in June 1642: 1642 Propositions of Parlt. in Clarendon v. I. 504 Several sorts of malignant Men, who were about the King. 1642 Petition Lords & Com. 17 June in Rushw. Coll. III. I. 631 That your Majesty..would please to dismiss your extraordinary Guards, the Cavaliers and others of that Quality, who seem to have little Interest or Affection to the publick Good, their Language and Behaviour speaking nothing but Division and War. Charles, in the Answer to the Petition 13 June 1642 speaks of Cavaliers as a "word by what mistake soever it seemes much in disfavour", it was soon reappropriated by the king's party, who in return applied Roundhead to their opponents, at the Restoration the court party preserved the name, which survived until the rise of the term Tory. Cavalier was not understood at the time as a term describing a style of dress, but a whole political and social attitude. However, in modern times the word has become more associated with the court fashions of the period, which included long flowing hair in ringlets, brightly coloured clothing with elaborate trimmings and lace collars and cuffs, plumed hats.
This contrasted with the dress of at least the most extreme Roundhead supporters of Parliament, with their preference for shorter hair and plainer dress, although neither side conformed to the stereotypical images entirely. Most Parliamentarian generals wore their hair at much the same length as their Royalist counterparts, though Cromwell was something of an exception; the best patrons in the nobility of Charles I's court painter Sir Anthony van Dyck, the archetypal recorder of the Cavalier image, all took the Parliamentary side in the Civil War. The most famous image identified as of a "cavalier", Frans Hals' Laughing Cavalier, shows a gentleman from the Calvinist Dutch town of Haarlem, is dated 1624; these derogatory terms showed what the typical Parliamentarian thought of the Royalist side – capricious men who cared more for vanity than the nation at large. The chaplain to King Charles I, Edward Simmons described a Cavalier as "a Child of Honour, a Gentleman well borne and bred, that loves his king for conscience sake, of a clearer countenance, bolder look than other men, because of a more loyal Heart".
There were many men in the Royalist armies who fit this description since most of the Royalist field officers were in their early thirties, married with rural estates which had to be managed. Although they did not share the same outlook on how to worship God as the English Independents of the New Model Army, God was central to their lives; this type of Cavalier was personified by Jacob Astley, 1st Baron Astley of Reading, whose prayer at the start of the Battle of Edgehill has become famous "O Lord, Thou knowest how busy I must be this day. If I forget Thee, do not forget me". At the end of the First Civil War Astley gave his word that he would not take up arms again against Parliament and having given his word he felt duty bound to refuse to help the Royalist cause in the Second Civil War. However, the word was coined by the Roundheads as a pejorative propaganda image of a licentious, hard drinking and frivolous man, who if thought of God, it is this image which has survived and many Royalists, for example Henry Wilmot, 1st Earl of Rochester, fitted this description to a tee.
Of another Cavalier, George Goring, Lord Goring, a general in the Royalist army, the principal advisor to Charles II, Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon, said: would, without hesitation, have broken any trust, or done any act of treachery to have satisfied an ordinary passion or appetite. Of all his qualifications dissimulation was his masterpiece; this sense has developed into the modern English use of "cavalier" to describe a recklessly nonchalant attitude, although still with a suggestion of stylishness. Cavalier remained in use as a description for members of the party that supported the monarchy up until the Exclusion Crisis of 1678–1681 w
Roundheads were supporters of the Parliament of England during the English Civil War. Known as Parliamentarians, they fought against King Charles I of England and his supporters, known as the Cavaliers or Royalists, who claimed rule by absolute monarchy and the principle of the'divine right of kings'; the goal of the Roundhead party was to give the Parliament supreme control over executive administration of the country/kingdom. Most Roundheads sought constitutional monarchy in place of the absolutist monarchy sought by Charles. However, at the end of the English Civil War in 1649, public antipathy towards the king was high enough to allow republican leaders such as Oliver Cromwell to abolish the monarchy and establish the Commonwealth of England; the Roundhead commander-in-chief of the first Civil War, Thomas Fairfax, remained a supporter of constitutional monarchy, as did many other Roundhead leaders such as Edward Montagu, 2nd Earl of Manchester and Robert Devereux, 3rd Earl of Essex. England's many Puritans and Presbyterians were invariably Roundhead supporters, as were many smaller religious groups such as the Independents.
However many Roundheads were members of the Church of England. Roundhead political factions included the proto-anarchist Diggers, the diverse group known as the Levellers and the apocalyptic Christian movement of the Fifth Monarchists; some Puritans, but by no means all, wore their hair cropped round the head or flat and there was thus an obvious contrast between them and the men of courtly fashion, who wore long ringlets. During the war and for a time afterwards, Roundhead was a term of derision—in the New Model Army it was a punishable offence to call a fellow soldier a Roundhead; this contrasted with the term "Cavalier" to describe supporters of the Royalist cause. Cavalier started out as a pejorative term—the first proponents used it to compare members of the Royalist party with Spanish Caballeros who had abused Dutch Protestants during the reign of Elizabeth I—but unlike Roundhead, Cavalier was embraced by those who were the target of the epithet and used by them to describe themselves."Roundheads" appears to have been first used as a term of derision toward the end of 1641, when the debates in Parliament in the Clergy Act 1640 were causing riots at Westminster.
The Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition quotes a contemporary authority's description of the crowd gathered there: "They had the hair of their heads few of them longer than their ears, whereupon it came to pass that those who with their cries attended at Westminster were by a nickname called Roundheads". The demonstrators included London apprentices and Roundhead was a term of derision for them because the regulations to which they had agreed included a provision for cropped hair. According to John Rushworth the word was first used on 27 December 1641 by a disbanded officer named David Hide. During a riot, Hide is reported to have drawn his sword and said he would "cut the throat of those round-headed dogs that bawled against bishops". However, Richard Baxter ascribes the origin of the term to a remark made by Queen Henrietta Maria, wife of Charles I, at the trial of Thomas Wentworth, 1st Earl of Strafford, earlier that year. Referring to John Pym, she asked; the principal advisor to Charles II, Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon, remarked on the matter, "and from those contestations the two terms of Roundhead and Cavalier grew to be received in discourse... they who were looked upon as servants to the king being called Cavaliers, the other of the rabble contemned and despised under the name of Roundheads."Ironically, after Anglican Archbishop William Laud made a statute in 1636 instructing all clergy to wear short hair, many Puritans rebelled to show their contempt for his authority and began to grow their hair longer though they continued to be known as Roundheads.
The longer hair was more common among the "Independent" and "high ranking" Puritans toward the end of the Protectorate, while the "Presbyterian" faction, the military rank-and-file, continued to abhor long hair. By the end of this period some Independent Puritans were again derisively using the term Roundhead to refer to the Presbyterian Puritans. Roundhead remained in use to describe those with republican tendencies up until the Exclusion Crisis of 1678–1681. During the Exclusion Bill crisis, the term Cavalier was replaced with "Tory", an Irish term introduced by their opponents, initially a pejorative term. Macaulay, Thomas Babington; the History of England from the Accession of James II. 1. New York: Harper & Brothers. P. 105. ISBN 0-543-93129-3. Hanbury, Benjamin. Historical Memorials Relating to the Independents Or Congregationalists: From Their Rise to the Restoration of the Monarchy. 3. Pp. 118, 635. Hunt, John. Religious Thought from the Reformation to the End of Last Century. 2. General Books LLC. p. 5.
ISBN 1-150-98096-6. Roberts, Chris. Heavy Words Lightly Thrown: The Reason Behind Rhyme. Thorndike Press. ISBN 0-7862-8517-6. Worden, Blair; the English Civil Wars 1640–1660. London: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-100694-3. Attribution This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Anonymous. "Roundhead". In Chisholm
Tregarth is a village near Thomas Telford's A5 London to Holyhead road between the village of Bethesda and the city of Bangor in Gwynedd, North Wales. It is in Llandygai Community The village grew around the local slate industry, with many houses being built to house quarry workers and their families; the village is renowned for a street of houses that were built by Lord Penrhyn, proprietor of the Penrhyn Quarry and occupier of Penrhyn Castle, to accommodate the workers that refused to strike during the Penrhyn Lockout of 1900-1903. The street, Tanrhiw Road, was known locally as'Stryd y Gynffon' and was one of the first main settlements in the village based alongside the farmsteads of Ty'n Clawdd, Tanrhiw Isaf and Tahrhiw Uchaf. Tregarth has a population of some 1,000 people of which around 80% would consider the Welsh language as their first language; the village is the birthplace of a number of local luminaries such as the late Sir Ifor Williams, the late Ifor Bowen Griffith, the late T. Gwynn Jones and actor John Ogwen.
Tregarth is home to sculptor Ann Catrin Evans. Tregarth has its own primary school, parish church and community centre, the venue for many village activities such as Ysgol Feithrin, Youth Club, Clwb yr Henoed and Snooker Club; the public house, Pant yr Ardd, was closed and put up for sale in June 2014. It was bought by an unknown source and is re-opened in December 2014. Owing to Bethesda's industrial heritage, Tregarth has two railway lines running through its centre, one the Bethesda Branch Line, closed in 1963 and the other The Narrow Gauge Penrhyn Quarry Railway Line, used to transport slate from the Penrhyn Quarries to Port Penrhyn and was closed in 1962. There was a station on the Bethesda Branch which opened in 1884 and closed in 1963; these lines have since been converted to the Lôn Las Ogwen cycle path as part of Sustrans Lôn Las Cymru cycle route 5 and take the cyclist on a journey from the Nant Ffrancon Pass winding through Tregarth down along the River Cegin towards Bangor and Port Penrhyn.
An hourly bus service into the town is provided by Arriva Buses Wales. The Moelyci Environmental Centre can be found in Tregarth; the centre welcomes visitors. Www.geograph.co.uk: photos of Tregarth and surrounding area
The Neolithic, the final division of the Stone Age, began about 12,000 years ago when the first development of farming appeared in the Epipalaeolithic Near East, in other parts of the world. The division lasted until the transitional period of the Chalcolithic from about 6,500 years ago, marked by the development of metallurgy, leading up to the Bronze Age and Iron Age. In Northern Europe, the Neolithic lasted until about 1700 BC, while in China it extended until 1200 BC. Other parts of the world remained broadly in the Neolithic stage of development, although this term may not be used, until European contact; the Neolithic comprises a progression of behavioral and cultural characteristics and changes, including the use of wild and domestic crops and of domesticated animals. The term Neolithic derives from the Greek νέος néos, "new" and λίθος líthos, "stone" meaning "New Stone Age"; the term was coined by Sir John Lubbock in 1865 as a refinement of the three-age system. Following the ASPRO chronology, the Neolithic started in around 10,200 BC in the Levant, arising from the Natufian culture, when pioneering use of wild cereals evolved into early farming.
The Natufian period or "proto-Neolithic" lasted from 12,500 to 9,500 BC, is taken to overlap with the Pre-Pottery Neolithic of 10,200–8800 BC. As the Natufians had become dependent on wild cereals in their diet, a sedentary way of life had begun among them, the climatic changes associated with the Younger Dryas are thought to have forced people to develop farming. By 10,200–8800 BC farming communities had arisen in the Levant and spread to Asia Minor, North Africa and North Mesopotamia. Mesopotamia is the site of the earliest developments of the Neolithic Revolution from around 10,000 BC. Early Neolithic farming was limited to a narrow range of plants, both wild and domesticated, which included einkorn wheat and spelt, the keeping of dogs and goats. By about 6900–6400 BC, it included domesticated cattle and pigs, the establishment of permanently or seasonally inhabited settlements, the use of pottery. Not all of these cultural elements characteristic of the Neolithic appeared everywhere in the same order: the earliest farming societies in the Near East did not use pottery.
In other parts of the world, such as Africa, South Asia and Southeast Asia, independent domestication events led to their own regionally distinctive Neolithic cultures, which arose independently of those in Europe and Southwest Asia. Early Japanese societies and other East Asian cultures used pottery before developing agriculture. In the Middle East, cultures identified as Neolithic began appearing in the 10th millennium BC. Early development occurred from there spread eastwards and westwards. Neolithic cultures are attested in southeastern Anatolia and northern Mesopotamia by around 8000 BC; the prehistoric Beifudi site near Yixian in Hebei Province, contains relics of a culture contemporaneous with the Cishan and Xinglongwa cultures of about 6000–5000 BC, neolithic cultures east of the Taihang Mountains, filling in an archaeological gap between the two Northern Chinese cultures. The total excavated area is more than 1,200 square yards, the collection of neolithic findings at the site encompasses two phases.
The Neolithic 1 period began around 10,000 BC in the Levant. A temple area in southeastern Turkey at Göbekli Tepe, dated to around 9500 BC, may be regarded as the beginning of the period; this site was developed by nomadic hunter-gatherer tribes, as evidenced by the lack of permanent housing in the vicinity, may be the oldest known human-made place of worship. At least seven stone circles, covering 25 acres, contain limestone pillars carved with animals and birds. Stone tools were used by as many as hundreds of people to create the pillars, which might have supported roofs. Other early PPNA sites dating to around 9500–9000 BC have been found in Jericho, West Bank, Gilgal in the Jordan Valley, Byblos, Lebanon; the start of Neolithic 1 overlaps the Heavy Neolithic periods to some degree. The major advance of Neolithic 1 was true farming. In the proto-Neolithic Natufian cultures, wild cereals were harvested, early seed selection and re-seeding occurred; the grain was ground into flour. Emmer wheat was domesticated, animals were herded and domesticated.
In 2006, remains of figs were discovered in a house in Jericho dated to 9400 BC. The figs are of a mutant variety that cannot be pollinated by insects, therefore the trees can only reproduce from cuttings; this evidence suggests that figs were the first cultivated crop and mark the invention of the technology of farming. This occurred centuries before the first cultivation of grains. Settlements became more permanent, with circular houses, much like those of the Natufians, with single rooms. However, these houses were for the first time made of mudbrick; the settlement had a surrounding stone wall and a stone tower. The wall served as protection from nearby groups, as protection from floods, or to keep animals penned; some of the enclosures suggest grain and meat storage. The Neolithic 2 began around 8800 BC according to the ASPRO chronology in the Levant; as with the PPNA dates, there are two versions from the same laboratories noted above. This system of terminology, however, is not convenient for southeast Anatolia and settlements of the middle Anatolia basin.
A settlement of 3,000 inhabitants was found in th
National Assembly for Wales
The National Assembly for Wales is the devolved parliament of Wales, with power to make legislation, vary taxes and scrutinise the Welsh Government. The Assembly comprises AMs. Since 2011, Members are elected for five-year terms under an additional members system, in which 40 AMs represent geographical constituencies elected by the plurality system, 20 AMs represent five electoral regions using the d'Hondt method of proportional representation; the largest party in the Assembly forms the Welsh Government. The Assembly was created by the Government of Wales Act 1998, which followed a referendum in 1997; the Assembly had no powers to initiate primary legislation until limited law-making powers were gained through the Government of Wales Act 2006. Its primary law-making powers were enhanced following a Yes vote in the referendum on 3 March 2011, making it possible for it to legislate without having to consult the UK parliament or the Secretary of State for Wales in the 20 areas that are devolved.
Legislation has been introduced by the Assembly Commission which will change the name of the institution from National Assembly for Wales to the Senedd, which may be known as the Welsh Parliament. An appointed Council for Wales and Monmouthshire was established in 1949 to "ensure the government is adequately informed of the impact of government activities on the general life of the people of Wales"; the council had 27 members nominated by local authorities in Wales, the University of Wales, National Eisteddfod Council and the Welsh Tourist Board. A post of Minister of Welsh Affairs was created in 1951 and the post of Secretary of State for Wales and the Welsh Office were established in 1964 leading to the abolition of the Council for Wales; the establishment of the Welsh Office created the basis for the territorial governance of Wales. The Royal Commission on the Constitution was set up in 1969 by Harold Wilson's Labour Government to investigate the possibility of devolution for Scotland and Wales.
Its recommendations formed the basis of the 1974 White Paper Democracy and Devolution: proposals for Scotland and Wales, which proposed the creation of a Welsh Assembly. However, Welsh voters rejected the proposals by a majority of four to one in a referendum held in 1979. After the 1997 general election, the new Labour Government argued that an Assembly would be more democratically accountable than the Welsh Office. For eleven years prior to 1997 Wales had been represented in the Cabinet of the United Kingdom by a Secretary of State who did not represent a Welsh constituency at Westminster. A second referendum was held in Wales on 18 September 1997 in which voters approved the creation of the National Assembly for Wales with a total of 559,419 votes, or 50.3% of the vote. The following year the Government of Wales Act was passed by the United Kingdom parliament, establishing the Assembly. In July 2002, the Welsh Government established an independent commission, with Lord Richard as chair, to review the powers and electoral arrangements of the National Assembly to ensure that it is able to operate in the best interests of the people of Wales.
The Richard Commission reported in March 2004. It recommended that the National Assembly should have powers to legislate in certain areas, whilst others would remain the preserve of Westminster, it recommended changing the electoral system to the single transferable vote which would produce greater proportionality. In response, the British government, in its Better Governance for Wales White Paper, published on 15 June 2005, proposed a more permissive law-making system for the Welsh Assembly based on the use of Parliamentary Orders in Council. In so doing, the Government rejected many of the cross party Richard Commission's recommendations; this has attracted criticism from opposition others. The Government of Wales Act 2006 received Royal Assent on 25 July 2006, it conferred on the Assembly legislative powers similar to other devolved legislatures through the ability to pass Assembly Measures concerning matters that are devolved. Requests for further legislative powers made through legislative competence requests were subject to the veto of the Secretary of State for Wales, House of Commons or House of Lords.
The Act reformed the assembly to a parliamentary-type structure, establishing the Welsh Government as an entity separate from, but accountable to the National Assembly. It enables the Assembly to legislate within its devolved fields; the Act reforms the Assembly's electoral system. It prevents individuals from standing as candidates in regional seats; this aspect of the act was subject to a great deal of criticism, most notably from the Electoral Commission. The Act was criticised. Plaid Cymru, the Official Opposition in the National Assembly from 1999–2007, attacked it for not delivering a fully-fledged parliament. Many commentators have criticised the Labour Party's partisan attempt to alter the electoral system. By preventing regional Assembly Members from standing in constituency seats the party has been accused of changing the rules to protect constituency representatives. Labour had 29 members in the Assembly at the time; the changes to the Assembly's powers were commenced on 4 May 2007, after the election.
Following a referendum on 3 March 2011, the Welsh Assembly gained direct law making powers, without the need to consult Westminster. The Conservative-Liberal coalition government created the Commission on Devolution in Wales