Event would have boosted Welsh economy and global profile, says Plaid AMs
Plaid Cymru has reacted to the news that there will be no Welsh bid to host the 2026 Commonwealth Games by criticising the Cardiff Labour Government’s ‘chronic lack of ambition’.
Plaid Cymru’s North Wales AM Llyr Gruffydd said that many potential sporting sites in the North were missing out as a result of the decision:
“Here in the North we could, for example, have seen Eirias Park used for rugby 7s, mountain biking in Llandegla, Tennis and hockey at the regional centres in Wrexham. In addition, the region would have been ideal for road cycling as well as the triathlon and shooting competitions.”
“The Cardiff Government is hiding behind the UK’s decision to leave the European Union as an excuse for inaction. But the referendum decision should be an incentive, not a deterrent, to attract new investment to Wales.
“Rather than show resilience and send a clear message that Wales can weather the Brexit storm, the Labour Government seems to be resigning to the fact that the challenges facing our economy are insurmountable.
“Hosting the Commonwealth Games in 2026 would have acted as a huge global shop window for Wales, allowing us to showcase the best of our great nation to the world.”
Shadow Health Secretary Rhun ap Iorwerth AM added that the Welsh Government’s decision signalled “a major own goal” and that hosting the Games in Wales would have presented the chance to support grassroots sports and inspire more people to lead more active lifestyles.
The AM for Ynys Mon added:
“The Labour Welsh Government’s chronic lack of ambition for our nation is lamentable.
“Hosting the Games wouldn’t have just provided us with a chance to boost the economy – it would have allowed us to make major strides in supporting sporting ventures in our communities too.
“As someone who coaches rugby for youngsters in my constituency, I know how important it is to develop an interest in sports from an early age and at grassroots level.
“Investing in sport is crucial for the nation’s health. Sadly, by failing to recognise this the Cardiff Labour Government have scored a major own goal.”