A NEW VOICE FOR HERITAGE

THE CHALLENGE

Wales is blessed with a vibrant heritage, two national languages and an outstanding sporting tradition. Our national community was among the first to emerge in Europe. We have a literary tradition that dates back to the sixth century. Yet while devolution has brought renewed self-confidence to Wales, successive Labour-led WAGs have failed to take enough pride in Welsh cultural traditions. There is often little knowledge of Wales beyond our borders. As a result the world’s greatest castles remain relatively obscure. The chance to strengthen legislation for the Welsh language was ducked. And other opportunities have been missed to protect and cultivate Welsh heritage.

A NEW VOICE

A Welsh Conservative Assembly Government will give Wales a big, confident ‘brand’ identity with heritage at its core. We will enhance the full potential of national treasures like the Welsh language and the finest medieval castles in the world. We want to spark a renaissance in the creative industries, in both the medium of English and Welsh.

While Wales has in recent years become a venue for major sporting events, we will invest further in this vital area.

A WELSH CONSERVATIVE ASSEMBLY GOVERNMENT WILL:

Create a Bilingual Nation

Introduce a Charter-Mark for businesses which will recognise Welsh language services. The scheme will be voluntary but will offer incentives for bilingual signage and Welsh language training for front-line staff.

Work towards one million Welsh speakers by 2031 and 1.5 million by 2051 in a truly bilingual Wales.

Legislate to enshrine the official status and equality of the Welsh and English languages in Wales and the independence of the Welsh Language Commissioner.

Offer a package of support to parents and guardians of children in Welsh medium schools, to include help to learn Welsh.

Support Eisteddfodau across Wales.

Champion Sport

Market Wales as a world class sports venue for major events. We will support bids for a European Cup Final and the Commonwealth Games. We would use the Commonwealth Games bid to encourage deeper ties with other Commonwealth countries.

Invest in a grassroots sport coaching scheme to increase physical activity among children and young people.

Promote Creative Industries

Support a review of Welsh language broadcasting to protect the independence and financial security of S4C beyond 2015.

Seek to establish a joint mechanism with Westminster to keep S4C fully accountable in areas where devolved matters are affected such as support for creative industries and the promotion of the Welsh language.

Work with entrepreneurs in the creative and cultural industries to meet the sector’s needs, including premises, digital networks and provision of wireless internet connections in public buildings.

Explore the feasibility of a Welsh joint digital fund between broadcasters, producers and media entrepreneurs, to invest in Welsh creative industries.

Work with producers and broadcasters to increase co-production across creative industries.

Implement the main recommendations of the Hargreaves Report into creative industries.

Celebrate Welsh Heritage

Invest in a big brand marketing strategy for Wales. This will market Wales as an entire destination from tourism and culture to a business location and partner.

Seek to establish St. David’s Day as a national holiday for Wales.

Place a duty on local authorities to ensure that war memorials are maintained.

Establish a Welsh military museum.

Create a Welsh public records office, under the supervision of the National Library for Wales.

Secure the University of Wales Press’ future by funding it directly from WAG.