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AM asks Auditor General to investigate Rhodri Morgan's claim of £10m road spend based on 'BBC agreement'

Liberal Democrat AM Eluned Parrott has written to the Auditor General asking him to investigate Rhodri Morgan's claim that the Welsh Government spent £10m developing Cardiff Bay roads on the understanding that BBC Wales would move its headquarters there.

The proposed new BBC Wales headquarters in the centre of Cardiff Credit: BBC Cymru Wales

"If what Rhodri Morgan says is true, then the Welsh Labour Government has spent £10 million on the basis of a verbal agreement that was not even adhered to" she said.

“I believe the Auditor General needs to be looking at this case as a matter of urgency which is why I have written to him today."

"The Welsh Labour Government needs to explain step by step how the decision to spend this large amount of money was taken."


Welsh Government preferred Cardiff Bay for BBC move

First Minister Carwyn Jones told his monthly press conference today that the Welsh Government would have preferred BBC Wales to choose Cardiff Bay as the location for its new HQ.

He was responding to claims made by his predecessor Rhodri Morgan in an article for Wales Online.

The former First Minister claimed a verbal agreement had been made with the project director of the BBC's Roath Lock drama village that the corporation was considering two sites - one at Roath Lock, and one on Penarth Road.

Mr Morgan said the "broad understanding" prompted the Welsh Government to authorise spending £10m on a new road to 'open up' access to the Roath Basin.

The BBC said the claims were wrong.

"There was no agreement, as far as I understand it" said Mr Jones.

"Although we welcome the investment being made by BBC Wales, I think it's fair to say our preference would have been the Bay".

BBC should answer to Assembly says Davies

Welsh Conservative leader Andrew RT Davies will call later for the BBC to be made answerable to the Assembly. He's writing to the BBC and the UK Government saying that the broadcaster's decisions in Wales should be audited and scrutinised by politicians here.

He says the change should take place as part of the BBC's Charter renewal and be in place from 2017.In a speech to the Institute for Welsh Governance in Aberystwyth, Mr Davies is expected to say

The £40 million annual budget that the BBC operates on in Wales is for the licence payers of Wales, therefore it is only right that it is audited and scrutinised as close to the operation as possible – in Wales.The editorial decisions that are taken in Wales not just on politics but on how Wales is reported must be scrutinised by the most important body in Wales.

Just 3 years out from the new Charter taking effect, I want to set the ball rolling, by recognising the BBC’s importance, by respecting its role and by standing up for all licence fee payers and those who care about plurality, value for money and the highest standards of reporting.

– Andrew RT Davies, leader of the Opposition