Wednesday, 27 July 2011
When communications were poor and regional control limited, what did our rulers do? They upped sticks and moved around. It was called the Royal Progress.
The King or Queen would regularly tour the kingdom with the purpose of asserting their rule and to win the loyalty of their subjects. It also had the additional bonus of getting out of London to escape the plague and by landing yourself on your rich subjects it was they that footed the bill of maintaining the Court. Many were bankrupted by such visits.
There is no suggestion that Carwyn Jones’s regional control is limited but many would argue that communications in Wales is not what it should be. Could this be behind our First Ministers decision to take his cabinet out of Cardiff for the first time to the spanking new Assembly building in Llandudno Junction?
Many have dismissed the decision as a bit of a gimmick to appease those who live in the North.
The constant moan of the Gogs is that everything goes to and happens in the South. They are the forgotten people, far, far away. The constant cry is “what has the Welsh Government ever done for us.”
In response Carwyn Jones had this cunning little plan to take the Cabinet to Llandudno Junction to conduct a closed Cabinet meeting on a little frequented industrial estate. Now if that was all, then it would be a bit inadequate as a response. A bit of a poor show, it could be said.
But the First Minister is one for doing things by stealth. This year, a simple cabinet meeting, next year, it will be the whole shooting match.
Carwyn’s Progress will be the full works. The Cabinet and all their courtiers/special advisors will be there. Entertainments will be arranged. It won’t be for a day, but it will be for weeks. Cabinet ministers will descend on unsuspecting communities, no hamlet will be without a visit.
Never again will the North be forgotten. They shall have government, the likes of which they’ve never seen before. Oh yes, a mere detail, they’ll have to foot the bill. The Progess doesn’t come cheap you know.