Ceredigion’s Plaid Cymru AM has given a warm welcome to the news that the Royal Commission on Historic Monuments, which is based in Aberystwyth, is to retain its independence rather than being merged into the Welsh Government. The Heritage Minister announced on 14 January that following a consultation, both the Royal Commission and CADW would not be merged.

It’s estimated that heritage and heritage tourism employ 30,000 people and contribute £840 million to Wales’s national gross value added. The Royal Commission on Ancient and Historic Monuments in Wales was established in 1908 and employs around 50 people, mostly at its headquarters in Plas Crug. It is responsible for research and interpretation of the archaeology and historic buildings of Wales, and holds an extensive archive of reports, photographs and maps.

Elin Jones, local Plaid Cymru AM for Ceredigion, said,

“I have discussed the future of the Commission several times with the Minister over recent months, including a meeting just before Christmas where I pressed the case against the body being absorbed into the Welsh Government. I’m pleased that the Minister has listened to the representations that have been made to him on this issue.

“I’m confident that the Royal Commission can best fulfil its mission of protecting Wales’s historic environment, and work towards developing additional sources of income and contributing to wider Government policy on heritage, without the cost and upheaval of a merger.

“It’s good news that the expertise, built up over very many years, will remain in Aberystwyth, and I welcome the envisaged closer collaboration between the Royal Commission and the National Library. The Commission is an important employer in Ceredigion, and I hope that the staff – for whom the past months have been a very uncertain time – can now have confidence in the future.”