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Welsh Government to 'foot the bill' for electrification

Chancellor George Osborne says the Welsh Government will have to foot the bill for electrifying the valley lines. On a visit to Port Talbot steelworks today he made it clear the UK Government will only fund the main Swansea to London line.

The Welsh Government has hit back claiming the Conservatives have sold Wales down the river. Owain Phillips reports.

Couple shows Osborne the ropes of how to play bingo

George Osborne joined the Nixons for a couple of games of bingo in Cardiff Credit: Wales News Service

A retired couple from Cardiff shared a few bingo tips with George Osborne during his Cardiff trip. The chancellor joined Shirley and Colin Nixon for a game at Castle Bingo earlier today, after he announced in last week's budget that duty on bingo would be reduced to 10 per cent.

Mrs Nixon, 81, said: "I never expected to give the chancellor a lesson in bingo. He asked what to do and I told him - and he was brilliant at it. But then you would expect him to be good with figures, wouldn't you?"

"I think he would have stayed all afternoon if he had the time," Mr Nixon, 74 said. "On the last game, he was only three numbers off from winning. He didn't ask us many questions because he was concentrating hard on what he was doing."

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Osborne shares a joke with bingo players in Cardiff

Chancellor George Osborne took the time to indulge in a game of bingo during his south Wales visit.

Mr Osborne was at Castle Bingo in Cardiff, after meeting workers at Tata Steel in Port Talbot and seeing coins being minted at the Royal Mint in Llantrisant.

George Osborne visited Castle Bingo in Cardiff Credit: Wales News Service
He took time to chat with players and learn more about the game Credit: Wales News Service
The chancellor was in south Wales following last week's budget Credit: Wales News Service

Chancellor visits Tata Steel in Port Talbot

Chancellor George Osborne is in south Wales today visiting a steelworks, the Royal Mint and a bingo hall following last week's budget.

Mr Osborne met workers at Tata Steel's Port Talbot works this morning, before going on to the Royal Mint in Llantrisant and Castle Bingo in Cardiff.

Mr Osborne met workers at Port Talbot's Tata Steel site Credit: ITV News/Owain Phillips
The steelworks was the chancellor's first port of call on his visit to south Wales Credit: ITV News/Owain Phillips
Mr Osborne promised to support businesses in last week's budget Credit: ITV News/Owain Phillips

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  1. Adrian Masters

No decision on business rates, school meals in Wales

The Welsh Government hasn't yet decided whether or not to follow moves set out in the Autumn Statement. In England, business rate rises will be capped at 2%, a relief scheme will run for another year and high street firms will get £1,000 discount. Primary school children will get free meals.

There will be extra money for Wales springing from those spending decisions, but it's up to ministers here what happens with business rates and they haven't decided yet if they'll follow George Osborne's example or not. Similarly there's no decision yet on free school meals for Welsh pupils.

Sources within the Welsh Government acknowledge that its budget will increase by £100m as a result of today's announcements. But they say that if ministers decide to match moves on business rates and free school meals, it'll amount to a budget cut.

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