Wales Office

The Office of the Secretary of State for Wales supports the Welsh Secretary and the Parliamentary Under Secretaries of State in promoting the best interests of Wales within a stronger United Kingdom. It ensures Welsh interests are represented at the heart of the UK Government and the UK Government’s responsibilities are represented in Wales.



Secretary of State

 Portrait

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales

Shadow Ministers / Spokeperson
Liberal Democrat
Baroness Humphreys (LD - Life peer)
Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Wales)

Scottish National Party
Richard Thomson (SNP - Gordon)
Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Wales)

Labour
Jo Stevens (Lab - Cardiff Central)
Shadow Secretary of State for Wales

Liberal Democrat
Sarah Green (LD - Chesham and Amersham)
Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Wales)
Junior Shadow Ministers / Deputy Spokesperson
Labour
Gerald Jones (Lab - Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney)
Shadow Minister (Wales)
Jessica Morden (Lab - Newport East)
Shadow Minister (Wales)
Parliamentary Under-Secretaries of State
Fay Jones (Con - Brecon and Radnorshire)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Wales Office)
Scheduled Event
Wednesday 13th March 2024
11:30
Wales Office
Oral questions - Main Chamber
13 Mar 2024, 11:30 a.m.
Wales
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Scheduled Event
Wednesday 8th May 2024
11:30
Wales Office
Oral questions - Main Chamber
8 May 2024, 11:30 a.m.
Wales
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Debates
Tuesday 6th February 2024
Wales
Ministerial Corrections
Select Committee Docs
Wednesday 21st February 2024
14:00
Select Committee Inquiry
Friday 18th August 2023
Prisons in Wales

The Committee invites written submissions addressing any or all of the following areas: 

  • How has the situation facing prisoners and …
Written Answers
Monday 19th February 2024
Wales Office: Health and Safety
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether all (a) buildings and (b) workplaces staff from their Department occupy …
Secondary Legislation
None available
Bills
Tuesday 7th June 2016
Wales Act 2017
A Bill to amend the Government of Wales Act 2006 and the Wales Act 2014 and to make provision about …
Dept. Publications
Thursday 1st February 2024
16:11

Wales Office Commons Appearances

Oral Answers to Questions is a regularly scheduled appearance where the Secretary of State and junior minister will answer at the Dispatch Box questions from backbench MPs

Other Commons Chamber appearances can be:
  • Urgent Questions where the Speaker has selected a question to which a Minister must reply that day
  • Adjornment Debates a 30 minute debate attended by a Minister that concludes the day in Parliament.
  • Oral Statements informing the Commons of a significant development, where backbench MP's can then question the Minister making the statement.

Westminster Hall debates are performed in response to backbench MPs or e-petitions asking for a Minister to address a detailed issue

Written Statements are made when a current event is not sufficiently significant to require an Oral Statement, but the House is required to be informed.

Most Recent Commons Appearances by Category
Jan. 31
Oral Questions
Dec. 12
Westminster Hall
Sep. 19
Adjournment Debate
View All Wales Office Commons Contibutions

Bills currently before Parliament

Wales Office does not have Bills currently before Parliament


Acts of Parliament created in the 2019 Parliament

Wales Office has not passed any Acts during the 2019 Parliament

Petitions

e-Petitions are administered by Parliament and allow members of the public to express support for a particular issue.

If an e-petition reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will issue a written response.

If an e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures the petition becomes eligible for a Parliamentary debate (usually Monday 4.30pm in Westminster Hall).

Trending Petitions
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Petitions with most signatures
Petition Open
44,208 Signatures
(280 in the last 7 days)
Petition Open
614 Signatures
(2 in the last 7 days)
Petition Open
53 Signatures
(1 in the last 7 days)
Wales Office has not participated in any petition debates
View All Wales Office Petitions

Departmental Select Committee

Welsh Affairs Committee

Commons Select Committees are a formally established cross-party group of backbench MPs tasked with holding a Government department to account.

At any time there will be number of ongoing investigations into the work of the Department, or issues which fall within the oversight of the Department. Witnesses can be summoned from within the Government and outside to assist in these inquiries.

Select Committee findings are reported to the Commons, printed, and published on the Parliament website. The government then usually has 60 days to reply to the committee's recommendations.


11 Members of the Welsh Affairs Committee
Stephen Crabb Portrait
Stephen Crabb (Conservative - Preseli Pembrokeshire)
Welsh Affairs Committee Chair since 27th January 2020
Beth Winter Portrait
Beth Winter (Labour - Cynon Valley)
Welsh Affairs Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Jamie Wallis Portrait
Jamie Wallis (Conservative - Bridgend)
Welsh Affairs Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Rob Roberts Portrait
Rob Roberts (Independent - Delyn)
Welsh Affairs Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Robin Millar Portrait
Robin Millar (Conservative - Aberconwy)
Welsh Affairs Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Ben Lake Portrait
Ben Lake (Plaid Cymru - Ceredigion)
Welsh Affairs Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Geraint Davies Portrait
Geraint Davies (Independent - Swansea West)
Welsh Affairs Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Virginia Crosbie Portrait
Virginia Crosbie (Conservative - Ynys Môn)
Welsh Affairs Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Simon Baynes Portrait
Simon Baynes (Conservative - Clwyd South)
Welsh Affairs Committee Member since 2nd March 2020
Ruth Jones Portrait
Ruth Jones (Labour - Newport West)
Welsh Affairs Committee Member since 15th June 2020
Tonia Antoniazzi Portrait
Tonia Antoniazzi (Labour - Gower)
Welsh Affairs Committee Member since 22nd January 2024
Welsh Affairs Committee: Previous Inquiries
Brexit and trade: implications for Wales The Dunlop Review and the UK Government’s union capability Freeports and Wales The Welsh economy and Covid-19 Wales and the Shared Prosperity Fund Brexit: Agriculture, Trade and the repatriation of powers inquiry The Cancellation of Rail Electrification in South Wales inquiry Broadcasting in Wales follow-up: S4C funding Agriculture in Wales post-Brexit inquiry Applications by Welsh pupils to Oxford and Cambridge Universities The future of the Severn River crossings inquiry The future of nuclear power in Wales inquiry The steel industry in Wales inquiry Welsh rates of income tax inquiry Devolution: Lessons for Wales inquiry Wales and Borders rail franchise inquiry Implications for Wales of the EU referendum result inquiry Police and Crime Commissioner Elections inquiry S4C review inquiry Brexit, trade and customs: implications for Wales inquiry Renewable energy in Wales inquiry Devolution of Air Passenger Duty to Wales inquiry Responsibilities of the Secretary of State for Wales inquiry Prison provision in Wales inquiry City Deals and Growth Deals in Wales inquiry Wales and the Armed Forces inquiry Wylfa Newydd nuclear power station inquiry The proposed closure of Ford's Bridgend plant inquiry Work of the Police and Crime Commissioners Energy generation in Wales: Shale Gas The Severn Crossings Toll: follow up Implications for Wales of the Government's Proposals for Constitutional Reform The future of the Newport Passport office S4C Inward investment in Wales Organ Donation (Legislative Competence) Broadband in Wales Cross-border Road and Rail Connectivity The Responsibilities of the Secretary of State for Wales Support for Armed Forces Veterans in Wales The impact of changes to housing benefit in Wales The Voluntary Code of Practice in the dairy sector The Work Programme in Wales Dairy Farmers in Wales inquiry Responsibilities of the Secretary of State for Wales evidence sessions Broadcasting in Wales inquiry Pre-legislative scrutiny of the Draft Wales Bill inquiry Prisons in Wales and treatment of Welsh offenders inquiry Cross-border health arrangements between England and Wales International Representation and Promotion of Wales by UK bodies Silk Commission Part II: devolving legislative powers to Wales Pre-legislative scrutiny of the draft Wales Bill Nuclear power in Wales Broadcasting in Wales Floating Offshore Wind in Wales Water quality in Wales Defence industry in Wales University research funding Transport in Wales Prisons in Wales Impact of population change in Wales Renewable energy in Wales Railway Infrastructure in Wales Devolution of Air Passenger Duty to Wales Brexit, trade and customs: implications for Wales The proposed closure of Ford's Bridgend plant City Deals and Growth Deals in Wales Prison provision in Wales Renewable energy in Wales S4C review Wales and the Armed Forces Responsibilities of the Secretary of State for Wales Wylfa Newydd nuclear power station

50 most recent Written Questions

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department

7th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, with reference to his oral contribution of 23 January 2024 during the debate on Protecting Steel in the UK, Official Report, column 265, whether his Department has undertaken or commissioned an independent assessment of the potential merits of the multi-union plan for steel production at Port Talbot.

Tata Steel are now conducting a formal consultation period with staff regarding the company’s proposed £1.25bn project to transition to greener steelmaking at Port Talbot.

Prior to this, Tata Steel have been discussing Union’s alternative proposals with them for several months. Ultimately, this is a commercial decision for Tata Steel and engagement with trade unions has always been a process that must be led by the employer.

We are working with Tata Steel to provide up to £100m funding for a dedicated Transition Board, which I chair and includes members from the Welsh Government, to support both affected employees and the local economy.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
8th Feb 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether all (a) buildings and (b) workplaces staff from their Department occupy have a suitable and sufficient risk assessment under Section 3 of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999.

All buildings and workplaces occupied by staff from my Department have a suitable and sufficient risk assessment under Section 3 of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 in place.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
31st Jan 2024
To ask His Majesty's Government how many times since taking office the Prime Minister has met the First Minister of Wales; and whether the Prime Minister plans to meet the current First Minister before the latter’s retirement.

I refer the Noble Lord to the answer I gave to question HL1907 on 1 February 2024. I also refer the Noble Lord to my Rt Hon Friend the Prime Minister’s comments about the First Minister’s retirement at Prime Minister’s Questions on 13 December 2023. Details of the Prime Minister’s future official meetings and visits will be announced in the usual way.

Baroness Swinburne
Baroness in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
30th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, how many ministerial red boxes belonging to his Department have been reported (a) lost and (b) stolen in each of the last three years.

None.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
30th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether he has had recent discussions with representatives of the Welsh Government on the levels of public awareness of (a) the role and (b) competencies of physician associates in the NHS in Wales.

I have regular discussions with Welsh Government Ministers on a wide range of issues. As a devolved matter, it is for the Welsh Government to consider the operational deployment of the role of physician associates (PAs) within the NHS workforce in Wales.

The UK Government greatly values the work of physician associates (PAs) and is introducing regulation as part of our commitment to the roles and to their place in the multi-disciplinary workforce.

The regulation of PAs which is a reserved matter has been subject to extensive public consultation over several years. Throughout the project, UK Government officials have engaged thoroughly with stakeholders including regulators, the devolved administrations, the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care, representative bodies and service users in developing the policy behind this legislation. This engagement has been crucial in shaping both UK Government policy intention and the resultant legislation, to ensure that it remains a practical piece of legislation for the benefit of patient safety and registrants.

Regulation will give the GMC responsibility and oversight of PAs, allowing it to take a holistic approach to education, training, and standards. Once regulation commences, GMC guidance will apply to PAs.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
23rd Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what targets his Department has set to help achieve the Government's commitments on net zero.

The Government set out how we would meet our commitments in the Net Zero Strategy in 2021 which included a detailed breakdown of actions required across all sectors of the economy. This was updated in 2023 through the publication of 'Powering Up Britain'.

The UK has halved its emissions, ahead of every other major economy, and we have grown our economy by over 70% since 1990. The UK over-achieved against the first and second carbon budgets, and the latest projections show that we are on track to meet the third.

We have one of the most ambitious decarbonisation targets in the world, and we have set more stretching targets for 2030 than most countries. We plan to cut emissions by 68% by 2030, which is more than the EU, Japan or the United States.

Fay Jones
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Wales Office)
18th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what recent discussions he has had with the Welsh Government on (a) the cost of living and (b) food poverty in (i) Newport West constituency and (ii) Wales.

I have regular discussions with Cabinet colleagues and Welsh Government Ministers on a wide range of issues, including the cost of living.

The UK Government has provided extensive support to Newport West. This includes Cost of Living payments for around 13,100 eligible households totalling up to £900 per household. Furthermore, around 240,000 payments have been delivered in Newport West through the Energy Bills Support Scheme.

The UK Government recognises the challenges posed by cost of living pressures and consequently has provided unprecedented levels of support to families across the UK. Measures announced at the Autumn Statement mean the UK Government will spend £104 billion between 2022 and 2025 to help families with the cost of living, which is an average of £3,700 per UK household. Owing to the cut in National Insurance tax from January 2024, 1.2 million workers in Wales will benefit from an annual gain of £324.

Moreover, the National Living wage will increase by 9.8% to £11.44 per hour for workers over 21 and the National Minimum wage will increase by 14.8% to £8.60 per hour for people aged 18-20. This will benefit 140,000 people in Wales and is further evidence of the support the UK Government is providing to help people with the cost of living.

Although housing is a devolved matter, the UK Government is supporting low-income households, by increasing the Local Housing Allowance (LHA). From April 2024, the UK Government will be investing £1.2 billion increasing LHA rates to cover the lower 30% of local rents. Around 1.6 million private renters in receipt of Housing Benefit or Universal Credit will gain nearly £800 per year on average in additional help towards their rental costs in 2024/25. In Wales, around 82,500 households are set to benefit from the boost.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
18th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what recent discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on the cost of living in (a) Newport West constituency and (b) Wales.

I have regular discussions with Cabinet colleagues and Welsh Government Ministers on a wide range of issues, including the cost of living.

The UK Government has provided extensive support to Newport West. This includes Cost of Living payments for around 13,100 eligible households totalling up to £900 per household. Furthermore, around 240,000 payments have been delivered in Newport West through the Energy Bills Support Scheme.

The UK Government recognises the challenges posed by cost of living pressures and consequently has provided unprecedented levels of support to families across the UK. Measures announced at the Autumn Statement mean the UK Government will spend £104 billion between 2022 and 2025 to help families with the cost of living, which is an average of £3,700 per UK household. Owing to the cut in National Insurance tax from January 2024, 1.2 million workers in Wales will benefit from an annual gain of £324.

Moreover, the National Living wage will increase by 9.8% to £11.44 per hour for workers over 21 and the National Minimum wage will increase by 14.8% to £8.60 per hour for people aged 18-20. This will benefit 140,000 people in Wales and is further evidence of the support the UK Government is providing to help people with the cost of living.

Although housing is a devolved matter, the UK Government is supporting low-income households, by increasing the Local Housing Allowance (LHA). From April 2024, the UK Government will be investing £1.2 billion increasing LHA rates to cover the lower 30% of local rents. Around 1.6 million private renters in receipt of Housing Benefit or Universal Credit will gain nearly £800 per year on average in additional help towards their rental costs in 2024/25. In Wales, around 82,500 households are set to benefit from the boost.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
18th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether he has had recent discussions with the Trussell Trust on (a) the cost of living and (b) food poverty in (i) Newport West constituency and (ii) Wales.

I have not had any recent discussions with the Trussell Trust on these topics. However, in my role as Secretary of State for Wales, I regularly meet with stakeholders to discuss a wide range of issues such as the cost of living.

The UK Government has provided extensive support to Newport West. This includes Cost of Living payments for around 13,100 eligible households totalling up to £900 per household. Furthermore, around 240,000 payments have been delivered in Newport West through the Energy Bills Support Scheme.

The UK Government recognises the challenges posed by cost of living pressures and consequently has provided unprecedented levels of support to families across the UK. Measures announced at the Autumn Statement mean the UK Government will spend £104 billion between 2022 and 2025 to help families with the cost of living, which is an average of £3,700 per UK household. Owing to the cut in National Insurance from January 2024, 1.2 million workers in Wales will benefit from an annual gain of £324 back.

Moreover, the National Living wage will increase by 9.8% to £11.44 per hour for workers over 21 and the National Minimum wage will increase by 14.8% to £8.60 per hour for people aged 18-20. This will benefit 140,000 people in Wales and is further evidence of the support the UK Government is providing to help people with the cost of living.

Although housing is a devolved matter, the UK Government is supporting low-income households by increasing the Local Housing Allowance (LHA). From April 2024, the UK Government will be investing £1.2 billion increasing LHA rates to cover the lower 30% of local rents. Around 1.6 million private renters in receipt of Housing Benefit or Universal Credit will gain nearly £800 per year on average in additional help towards their rental costs in 2024/25. In Wales, around 82,500 households are set to benefit from the boost.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
23rd Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, how much and what proportion of the £100 million fund overseen by the Tata Steel/Port Talbot Transition Board has been spent.

The Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board has been set up to support those affected by Tata Steel’s decarbonisation Transition and will be supported by up to £100 million from UK Government and Tata Steel. Decisions on investment will happen once the consultation has concluded and there is an understanding of what the impact of Tata Steel’s decarbonisation plans will be.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
22nd Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, if he will publish the terms of reference of the Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board.

The Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board has been set up to support those affected by Tata Steel’s decarbonisation Transition and will be supported by up to £100 million from UK Government and Tata Steel. The terms of reference of the Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board have been published on the Neath Port Talbot Council website and are available here: Tata Steel / Port Talbot Transition Board - Terms of reference – Neath Port Talbot Council (npt.gov.uk).

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
22nd Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, if he will publish the minutes of future meetings of the Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board.

The Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board has been set up to support those affected by Tata Steel’s decarbonisation Transition and will be supported by up to £100 million from UK Government and Tata Steel. I chair the Board, with the Minister for the Economy of Wales and the Secretary of State for Levelling Up acting as deputy chairs. The Board’s membership also consists of representatives from Neath Port Talbot Council, Tata Steel, the local Member of Parliament and Member of the Senedd. Trade Union representatives also attend as observers of the Board meetings.

In order to facilitate open dialogue on sensitive issues, the minutes of previous meetings have not been published but Joint Statements are published after each meeting which summarise the topics discussed and who was in attendance. This approach will be adopted for future meetings.


David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
22nd Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, if he will publish the minutes of the Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board meetings in (a) October and (b) November 2023.

The Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board has been set up to support those affected by Tata Steel’s decarbonisation Transition and will be supported by up to £100 million from UK Government and Tata Steel. I chair the Board, with the Minister for the Economy of Wales and the Secretary of State for Levelling Up acting as deputy chairs. The Board’s membership also consists of representatives from Neath Port Talbot Council, Tata Steel, the local Member of Parliament and Member of the Senedd. Trade Union representatives also attend as observers of the Board meetings.

In order to facilitate open dialogue on sensitive issues, the minutes are not published but Joint Statements are published after each meeting which summarise the topics discussed and who was in attendance.

The first joint statement is available here: Statement on behalf of the Tata Steel/ Port Talbot Transition Board - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).

The second joint statement is available here: Tata Steel / Port Talbot Transition Board Statement - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
22nd Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether the Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board has met monthly.

The Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board has been set up to support those affected by Tata Steel’s decarbonisation Transition and will be supported by up to £100 million from UK Government and Tata Steel. From that funding, £80 million is provided by the UK Government and £20 million will be provided by Tata.

I chair the Board, and it had its inaugural meeting on 19 October 2023, and the Board reconvened for its second meeting on 30 November 2023. The third Board meeting will be held on 1 February 2024. The Board will continue to meet regularly, to help ensure that those who are affected are receiving the support that they need. Both of the sub-groups held their first official meetings the week commencing 22 January 2024.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
18th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what recent discussions he has had with the Home Secretary on the time taken to process claims to the Windrush Compensation Scheme from people in Wales.

I have regular discussions with Home Office ministers on a range of issues and I recognise the contribution of the Windrush Generation to Wales. I was pleased to meet the Windrush Cymru Elders at the Mission Seafarers in Newport on 31 October 2023.

The Windrush Compensation Scheme is determined to ensure everyone who was affected receives every penny of the compensation to which they are entitled at the earliest point possible. The scheme is making significant progress towards achieving this aim. As of the end of November 2023, the scheme had paid over £75 million in compensation and over 78% of claims received had been given a final decision.

The time to allocate a claim for a substantive casework consideration has been reduced significantly, from 18 months to under 4 months. The 4 month period includes all essential eligibility checks, together with a Preliminary Assessment to make an initial payment of £10,000 wherever possible.

However, each person’s claim is deeply personal and deserves to be processed with the utmost care and sensitivity so that the maximum payment can be made to them.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, how many equalities impact assessments his Department completed in each of the last five years for which data is available.

Under the Public Sector Equality Duty (the Duty) all public authorities, including Government departments, are required by law to ensure that they have due regard to certain equality considerations when carrying out their functions. While ‘equality impact assessments’ may be produced, there is no legal requirement for duty assessments to be recorded in a specific format.

We do not centrally monitor assessments in this area but are confident that we are meeting the Duty in our decision-making processes.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what recent discussions he has had with hospitality businesses in Wales on commercial energy costs.

My officials and I regularly meet with businesses across Wales, including those in the hospitality sector, to discuss a variety of issues.

The Government provided an unprecedented package of support of £7.4 billion through the Energy Bill Relief Scheme (EBRS) which ended on 31 March 2023, shielding businesses and saving some around half of their wholesale energy cost.

The EBRS was replaced by the Energy Bills Discount Scheme (EBDS), which provides support to all eligible non-domestic energy users paying the highest energy prices starting from 1 April 2023 to 31 March 2024. Since the scheme was introduced, wholesale energy prices have now fallen significantly, and inflation has fallen from its peak of 11.1% to 4%.

In addition, at Autumn Statement 2023, the government announced that it is freezing Climate Change Levy rates for 2025-26 to continue achieving CCL’s environmental objectives without increasing the impact to businesses’ energy bills.

The UK Government is providing further support to the hospitality sector by freezing alcohol duty until August 2024, and increasing the new Draught Relief duty from the initially proposed 5% to 9.2%. In addition, in England, we have extended the 75% relief on business rates available to hospitality, retail and leisure businesses. I am concerned about the impact of the cut to non-domestic rates relief for hospitality businesses proposed by the Welsh Government in their recent draft budget.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what recent discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on the payment of compensation to sub-postmasters in Wales affected by issues with the Horizon system.

The Government has already paid out over £153 million to over 2,700 victims. In the overturned convictions scheme, 95 convictions have been overturned, with 31 claimants agreeing full and final settlements. Over £33 million has been paid out to those with overturned convictions, which includes interim payments and partial settlements.

Of the original trailblazing postmasters in the “GLO” group who took the Post Office to court and exposed the Horizon Scandal, £27 million has been paid out to 477 claimants. The original 2,417 postmasters who claimed through the original Horizon Shortfall Scheme have now all had offers of compensation. Offers have totalled over £107m and over £93 million has been paid out in this scheme, with Post Office now dealing with late applications and with those cases where the initial offer was not accepted.

In the coming weeks, we will introduce new primary legislation to quash all convictions that were reliant on erroneous Horizon evidence. Once this legislation is passed, and convictions have been overturned, they will be entitled to at least £600,000 in compensation to rebuild their lives.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
15th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether he has had discussions with the Welsh Government on the impact of increased rental costs on tenants in Wales.

Although housing is a devolved matter the UK Government is supporting renters in Wales by increasing the Local Housing Allowance (LHA). From April 2024, the UK Government will be investing £1.2 billion increasing LHA rates to cover the lowest 30% of local market rents. Around 1.6 million private renters in receipt of Housing Benefit or Universal Credit will gain nearly £800 per year on average in additional help towards their rental costs in 2024/25. In Wales, around 82,500 households are set to benefit from the boost.

This significant investment, taken together with the wider benefits uprating, will improve housing affordability for low-income households on benefits renting in the private sector, helping them afford their rent and reducing the risk of rent arrears and homelessness.

More broadly, the UK Government and Welsh Government are working closely to apply the prohibition against Blanket Ban practices in Wales. Through the Renters (Reform) Bill we will achieve our shared objective to make sure families with children and people who receive benefits can access homes in the private rented sector.

Moreover, the National Living wage will increase by 9.8% to £11.44 per hour for workers over 21 and the National Minimum wage will increase by 14.8% to £8.60 per hour for people aged 18-20. This will benefit 140,000 people in Wales and is further evidence of the support the UK Government is providing to support people with the cost of living.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
15th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether he has had discussions with the Welsh Government on the impact of increased rental costs on renters in Wales.

Although housing is a devolved matter the UK Government is supporting renters in Wales by increasing the Local Housing Allowance (LHA). From April 2024, the UK Government will be investing £1.2 billion increasing LHA rates to cover the lowest 30% of local market rents. Around 1.6 million private renters in receipt of Housing Benefit or Universal Credit will gain nearly £800 per year on average in additional help towards their rental costs in 2024/25. In Wales, around 82,500 households are set to benefit from the boost.

This significant investment, taken together with the wider benefits uprating, will improve housing affordability for low-income households on benefits renting in the private sector, helping them afford their rent and reducing the risk of rent arrears and homelessness.

More broadly, the UK Government and Welsh Government are working closely to apply the prohibition against Blanket Ban practices in Wales. Through the Renters (Reform) Bill we will achieve our shared objective to make sure families with children and people who receive benefits can access homes in the private rented sector.

Moreover, the National Living wage will increase by 9.8% to £11.44 per hour for workers over 21 and the National Minimum wage will increase by 14.8% to £8.60 per hour for people aged 18-20. This will benefit 140,000 people in Wales and is further evidence of the support the UK Government is providing to support people with the cost of living.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what the (a) membership and (b) remit is of the people, skills and business sub-group of the Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board.

(a) Membership

The People, Skills and Business sub-group membership will include a wide range of people including Tata Steel representatives, business leaders, officials in the UK Government and the Welsh Government, employees of Neath Port Talbot Council and community representatives, including a regional Member of the Senedd. Trade Union representatives will also be invited.

(b) Remit

The People, Skills and Business sub-group is being established to provide immediate support for the people, businesses and communities directly affected by Tata Steel UK’s decarbonisation transition. The sub-group will operate beneath the Transition Board, to coordinate activity at a local level and report progress and challenges and make recommendations to the Transition Board.


David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what the (a) membership and (b) remit is of the place and regeneration sub-group of the Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board.

(a) Membership

The Place and Regeneration sub-group membership will include a wide range of people including Tata Steel representatives, business leaders, employees of the UK Government and the Welsh Government, employees of Neath Port Talbot Council and community representatives, including a regional Member of the Senedd. Trade Union representatives will also be invited.

(b) Remit

The Place and Regeneration sub-group will provide the Transition Board with advice on how to protect and grow the economic environment as a result of Tata Steel UK’s decarbonisation transition. They operate beneath the Transition Board, to coordinate activity at a local level and report progress and challenges and make recommendations to the Transition Board.

The Place and Regeneration sub-group will develop a Local Economic Action Plan that will provide the Transition Board with advice on how to ensure regeneration and economic growth for the local area for the next decade.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what recent estimate he has made of when the Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board will receive recommendations on investment from the sub-groups.

The Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board will start to receive recommendations on investments from the sub-groups after the formal consultation on the transition has begun. Decisions on investment will happen once the consultation has concluded and there is an understanding of what the impact of Tata Steel’s decarbonisation plans will be.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether representatives from trade unions were invited to attend the two meetings of the Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board.

I invited Community, Unite and GMB trade union representatives to both of the Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board meetings that have taken place so far. There have been trade union representatives in attendance at both meetings.

I also met with the trade unions outside of the Transition Board and will continue to engage interested parties from trade unions, business and the communities affected.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
17th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether the Tata Steel and Port Talbot Transition Board has undertaken its review of the group’s terms of reference.

The Tata Steel / Port Talbot Transition Board reviewed and agreed the terms of reference at the inaugural Board meeting on Thursday 19 October 2023.

The Tata Steel / Port Talbot Transition Board has been established to provide advice on how to protect and grow the economic environment and to support and mitigate the impact on those workers, businesses and communities directly affected by Tata Steel UK decarbonisation transition.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
15th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether he has had recent discussions with (a) the Secretary of State for Transport, (b) Network Rail and (c) the Welsh government on the electrification of the North Wales Main Line.

My officials and I have regular discussions with counterparts in the Department for Transport, Network Rail and the Welsh Government on a wide range of transport matters across Wales.

The UK Government is committed to providing £1 billion to fund the electrification of the North Wales Main Line. This investment will have a transformative impact for the many residents, commuters and tourists who use the North Wales Main Line, driving economic growth across the region.

The Department for Transport is working closely with Network Rail and industry partners to develop and deliver on the Government priorities outlined in the Prime Minister’s Network North announcement, including electrification of the North Wales Main Line. The Government is currently considering next steps, including delivery timelines, and will share further information when this work is complete. All schemes will be subject to the development and approval of business cases and will undergo all formal governance, in line with relevant fiscal and legal duties.

The UK Government is already providing significant investment to improve rail infrastructure and travel in Wales, including £144 million for the Core Valley Lines, delivering the £76 million electrification of the Severn Tunnel and £77.7 million for improvements to Cardiff Central Station.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
15th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether he has had recent discussions with (a) the Secretary of State for Transport and (b) Network Rail on the potential impact of Control Period 7 funding on (i) rail services and (ii) the condition of rail infrastructure in Wales.

My officials and I have regular discussions with counterparts in the Department for Transport and Network Rail on a wide range of transport matters in Wales.

Between 2024 and 2029, the UK Government will be providing a record £44.1 billion settlement for Network Rail in Control Period 7 across England and Wales. This £44.1 billion settlement is roughly a 4% increase in real terms when compared to the previous control period.

The UK Government is committed to improving rail infrastructure in Wales and has allocated £1 billion to electrify the North Wales Mainline, delivered the £76 million electrification of the Severn Tunnel, contributed £144 million to the upgrade of the Core Valley Lines and provided £77.7 million for improvements to Cardiff Central Station.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
15th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, when the Tata Steel/ Port Talbot Transition Board will next meet.

The Tata Steel/Port Talbot Transition Board plan to next meet on 1 February 2024.

I chair the Transition Board which was set up to support people, businesses and communities affected by Tata Steel’s decarbonisation transition. The Transition Board will have access to up to £100 million to invest in skills and regeneration programmes for the local area.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
5th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, if he will bring forward legislative proposals to provide for a referendum on the continuation of the Government of Wales Act 1998.

The UK Government has no plans to hold a referendum on the continuation of devolution in Wales. People in Wales voted in support of devolution in two referenda – in 1997 to establish the National Assembly for Wales and in 2011 to provide it with full law-making powers.

Rather than reopening the question of devolution via a referendum, I would encourage anyone unhappy with the laws being passed by the Senedd to make their voice heard through the ballot box at the next Senedd election.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
5th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what steps the Government is taking to protect the Welsh language.

The Welsh language is a devolved subject and the responsibility of Senedd Cymru / the Welsh Parliament and the Welsh Government. However, the UK Government is committed to supporting the promotion and use of the Welsh language, including the Welsh Government’s ambition for one million Welsh speakers by 2050.

As the UK’s major Welsh language broadcaster, S4C has played a unique and critical role in promoting the Welsh language and is a vital partner for UK Government. The UK Government’s commitment to promoting the Welsh language is reflected in S4C’s licence fee settlement, announced in January 2022; this provides a very strong settlement, with S4C initially receiving £88.8 million p.a. from April 2022, rising in line with inflation from April 2024. It also includes an additional £7.5 million p.a. to support S4C’s digital development, ensuring S4C’s offering remains sustainable in the digital age. Overall, this settlement delivers a 9% increase in funding for S4C.

Furthermore, as a fluent Welsh speaker and champion for the Welsh language, I personally take every opportunity to promote the language and communicate bilingually in my role. The Office of the Secretary of State for Wales, as the lead department in UK Government for the Welsh language, works with other government departments to improve Welsh language provision, most notably through the official-level, cross-Government Welsh Language Forum.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
12th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, how much his Department spent on external recruitment consultants in the (a) 2020-21, (b) 2021-22 and (c) 2022-23 financial year.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Wales has spent nothing on external recruitment consultants in the last three years.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
5th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, how much their Department spent on hospitality in (a) 2021, (b) 2022 and (c) 2023.

We do not routinely publish this data, as has been the case under successive administrations. All Business Units within the office have a responsibility to keep official hospitality costs as low as possible and demonstrate good value for money.

Details of ministerial and senior official hospitality are published on a quarterly basis, and are available on GOV.UK.

Fay Jones
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Wales Office)
4th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, for what reason he did not jointly sign the letter from the First Minister of Wales on the release of location data for Category C and D disused coal tips, dated 7 November 2023.

As coal tips are a devolved matter and out of respect for the devolution agreement, I felt that the letter would be best coming from the First Minister.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
28th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what steps he is taking with Cabinet colleagues to improve the quality of water in rivers and streams in Wales.

Water is a devolved matter in Wales, as such the Welsh Labour Government is responsible for water in rivers and streams in Wales, not the UK Government. It is high time that the Welsh Government took greater action on this vital issue as a devolved responsibility.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
28th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what recent discussions he has had with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on the impact of changes in the level of interest rates on homeowners in Wales.

The Government is working to support homeowners by driving down inflation which leads to lower interest rates. In doing this, the Government has already met its goal to halve inflation this year.

We are also supporting borrowers struggling with their mortgage payments through the Mortgage Charter, helping customers manage their mortgage payments.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
13th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what data their Department holds on the (a) number and (b) cost of replacing (i) laptops, (ii) mobile phones, (iii) memory sticks and (iv) external hard drives that have been (A) lost and (B) stolen in the last 12 months.

The Wales Office has reported no lost or stolen items listed in the question over the last 12 months.

Fay Jones
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Wales Office)
7th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether he plans to take steps to promote research in Welsh universities in the context of the Welsh universities showcasing event held on 17 October 2023.

I was delighted to welcome all eight of the universities in Wales and the Open University to an event showcasing the sector at Lancaster House on 17 October 2023. The event highlighted the strength and breadth of Welsh university research and its ability to deliver tangible benefits to communities in Wales, the UK and across the world. I am committed to ensuring Welsh universities play a vital role in positioning the UK at the forefront of research and development, and I firmly believe the event has helped make progress towards this goal. Senior representatives from each of UKRI’s research councils were present at the event and had the opportunity to see just some of the research excellence found across Wales’ areas of academic strength.

The UK Government is committed to supporting the higher education sector, demonstrated by our ongoing investment of £39.8 billion in research and development between 2022 and 2025. Moreover, the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT) recently announced a £60 million Regional Innovation Fund to support regions that have lower levels of research and development investment. As part of this, the Welsh Government will receive £3.4 million in Barnett consequentials. I hope this will be invested in the Welsh higher education sector.

Wales is already leading the way in areas as diverse as MedTech, AgriTech and Net Zero and also has a world-leading compound semiconductor cluster based in South Wales. I will continue to champion the strengths of the Welsh university sector. My officials regularly meet with their counterparts in DSIT and the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC). Discussions with the Wales Innovation Network (WIN) are ongoing on how to build on the momentum created by the event held at Lancaster House on 17 October 2023.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
19th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what recent assessment he has made of the adequacy of the provision through the medium of Welsh of public services in Wales for which the UK Government is responsible.

The Welsh language is a devolved subject and the responsibility of Senedd Cymru / the Welsh Parliament and the Welsh Government. Most public bodies in Wales are subject to Welsh language standards, made under the Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011, in delivering public services. The Welsh Language Commissioner is responsible for ensuring that bodies fulfil their obligations in relation to specified standards.

Ministers of the Crown are not subject to Welsh language standards. In practice, this means most UK Government departments operate Welsh language schemes under the Welsh Language Act 1993. Schemes set out, so far as practicable, how departments treat Welsh and English on the basis of equality in respect of services they provide for Wales. The Welsh Language Commissioner approves schemes before they are implemented and departments report regularly to the Commissioner on performance against their respective schemes.

As lead department in UK Government for the Welsh language, the Office of the Secretary of State for Wales works with other government departments to improve Welsh language provision, most notably through the official-level, cross-government Welsh Language Forum.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
19th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what recent assessment he has made of the adequacy of the adherence to Welsh language legislation of public services in Wales for which the UK Government is responsible.

The Welsh language is a devolved subject and the responsibility of Senedd Cymru / the Welsh Parliament and the Welsh Government. Most public bodies in Wales are subject to Welsh language standards, made under the Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011, in delivering public services. The Welsh Language Commissioner is responsible for ensuring that bodies fulfil their obligations in relation to specified standards.

Ministers of the Crown are not subject to Welsh language standards. In practice, this means most UK Government departments operate Welsh language schemes under the Welsh Language Act 1993. Schemes set out, so far as practicable, how departments treat Welsh and English on the basis of equality in respect of services they provide for Wales. The Welsh Language Commissioner approves schemes before they are implemented and departments report regularly to the Commissioner on performance against their respective schemes.

As lead department in UK Government for the Welsh language, the Office of the Secretary of State for Wales works with other government departments to improve Welsh language provision, most notably through the official-level, cross-government Welsh Language Forum.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
19th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what recent discussions he has had with the Welsh Language Commissioner on the adequacy of the provision through the medium of Welsh of public services in Wales for which the UK Government is responsible.

As a fluent Welsh speaker and champion for the Welsh language, I take every opportunity to promote the language and communicate bilingually in my role.

My officials and I regularly meet with the Welsh Language Commissioner and her office to discuss matters relating to the Welsh language, including the provision of public services through the medium of Welsh by UK Government. Most recently in August, I met the Commissioner in Aberystwyth as part of my Welsh Language Roundtable to discuss the Census 2021 results and the causes of the decline in the number of Welsh speakers in parts of Wales.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, if he will bring forward legislative proposals to rescind the decision of the Welsh Government to introduce default 20mph speed limits.

As part of the Wales Act 2017, power for setting national speed limits was devolved to the Welsh Government.

It is disappointing that the Welsh Government seems to be ignoring its own impact assessments, which suggest a £4.5 billion hit to the Welsh economy.

The UK Government does not have any current plans to change the national speed limits, or to introduce 20mph as the default speed limit for urban areas in England.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
13th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, how much their Department spent on equality and diversity training in the 2022-2023 financial year.

On 2 October, the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced a value for money audit of all EDI (Equality, Diversity and Inclusion) spending in the Civil Service.

The audit will dovetail with the public sector productivity review, aiming at delivering a leaner, more efficient government. The audit forms part of our drive to improve productivity across the public sector by driving down waste and improving performance.

The findings and actions of the audit will be announced by the Chancellor in the Autumn.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
13th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what proportion of officials in his Department that are (a) graded as senior civil servant 2 and (b) on full-time equivalent contracts are women.

My Department has one official graded at SCS 2, who is male.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
13th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what proportion of officials in his Department on temporary contracts are women.

My Department has eleven staff members on temporary contracts, five (45%) of whom are women.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
19th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what discussions he has had with the Welsh Government on supporting narrow gauge railway tourism in Wales.

Narrow gauge railways, like Rhyl Miniature Railway, are an important aspect of our tourism sector and it is vital they are supported. Although tourism is devolved in Wales, the UK Government invested approximately £18 million in funding during COVID to over 60 heritage steam organisations through the Culture Recovery Fund.

18th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, when he last met the First Minister of Wales.

I last met with the First Minister of Wales on Thursday 12 October, 2023.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
11th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, on how many occasions (a) he and (b) the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Wales visited a (i) Government Hub and (ii) ministerial office outside London in (A) 2022 and (B) 2023.

I have worked from the Hub on 21 occasions between 2022 and 2023 and the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State has done so twice. We both also attend a large number of events, meetings and visits across Wales on a regular basis.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
5th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) has been found within their Department's estate.

Departments have been asked to report on the current picture of suspected and confirmed RAAC in their estates as soon as possible. This will be updated on a regular basis as new buildings are identified and surveying and remediation are carried out.

The Wales Office does not own or manage any buildings. The Office leases space in Gwydyr House in London and Ty William Morgan in Cardiff. These buildings are managed by the Government Property Agency and HMRC respectively.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
1st Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what steps their Department is taking to improve its digital services to provide better (a) accessibility and (b) user experience for the public.

The Central Digital and Data Office (CDDO) leads the Government Digital and Data function; this includes setting strategy and direction for the improvement of digital services and understanding current performance.

Since the publication of the National Disability Strategy in July 2021, CDDO has published the outcome of its work to monitor UK public sector websites and mobile applications. This can be found at the following link: Accessibility monitoring of public sector websites and mobile apps 2020-2021 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Outputs of this publication and other reviews of digital service performance across government have informed a new performance framework, created by CDDO, for service provision in Government.

This framework forms part of mission 1 of the Transforming for a Digital Future strategy, which commits HMG to move 50 of its Top 75 services (by volume) to ‘Great’ standard on the framework by 2025.

It explicitly requires compliance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) Accessibility Regulations 2018 (“accessibility regulations'') and sets thresholds for user experience, which are in line with global best practice.

CDDO is working proactively with departments to ensure that public services meet the requirements set out in the framework, in order to move them to ‘Great’ standard.

Alongside this, Government Digital Service (GDS) continues to monitor legal accessibility compliance across the public sector and CDDO monitors adherence to the Service Standard and Design Standard, all of which set out minimum requirements for user experience and accessibility and are formally monitored by CDDO through its Service Assessment process.

GOV.UK’s strategy aims to improve the overall user experience by making it quicker and easier for users to access information and services, in formats and channels of their choice.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales