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Dippy the Diplodocus is to visit the Senedd

Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire

Dippy the Diplodocus sets off on a time-shifting tour of the UK in early 2018, bringing a flavour of the Jurassic to eight carefully selected venues across the UK including the National Assembly of Wales.

The 70ft plaster-cast sauropod replica has dominated the Natural History Museum's Hintze hall since 1979.

Then a decision was taken to retire Dippy from 2017 and replace him with the real skeleton of a blue whale.

The move went viral on social media with the launch of a Twitter campaign under the hashtag SaveDippy. More than 32,000 people signed a petition calling on the museum to change its mind.

The installation will attract thousands of people to the Senedd, the home of Welsh democracy. Working with our partners, we will provide unique learning experiences, linked to sustainability and science, for people of all ages.

We will also provide further opportunities for visitors to discuss Wales’s past and present and have a say about our nation’s future.

– Elin Jones AM, Presiding Officer of the National Assembly for Wales

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Senedd hit by power cut

Proceedings have been interrupted twice this afternoon Credit: Senedd TV

A debate in the Senedd has been halted twice by a power cut. During a debate on the NHS, the lights went out during a speech in Welsh by the Plaid Cymru health spokesperson, Elin Jones. The simultaneous translation into English was cut off and the sitting was briefly suspended. When AMs resumed their debate Conservative Angela Burns was interrupted by a second power failure. She was able to conclude her speech after a delay lasting about 15 minutes.

Plaid Cymru AM Llyr Gruffydd joked on Twitter that he'd always said the Assembly needed more power. Labour minister Leighton Andrews preferred to tweet that the Assembly had experienced a "power surge".

Ten facts you may not know about the Senedd

It is most often known for its reviews of hotels and restaurants but the website Trip Advisor has given a certificate of excellence to the National Assembly of Wales building.

Credit: PA

Here are some facts about the building that you may not know:

  • It cost almost £70m
  • It is one of the most environmentally friendly parliament buildings in the world
  • It was opened by Queen Elizabeth II on St David's Day in 2006.
  • It has a design life of 100 years
  • It uses geothermal energy for heating
  • Rainwater from the roof is used to flush the toilets
  • It has a biomass boiler
  • The desks for AMs are made of Welsh Oak
  • Cardiff's Coal Exchange was in the running for hosting the Assembly
  • It was designed by Rogers Stirk Harbour and Partners

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Assembly pays tribute to Nelson Mandela

Senedd flags at half mast for Nelson Mandela Credit: ITV News, Adrian Masters

Assembly Members will observe a minute's silence in the Senedd and be given time to pay tributes to Nelson Mandela. The Assembly's plenary session will begin earlier than usual in order to accomodate the tribute session. MPs paid their tributes in the Commons on Monday.

Flags outside the Senedd will again be flown at half mast and a book of condolence has also been opened for AMs and members of the public to record their own tributes.

Nelson Mandela Book of Condolence, Senedd Credit: National Assembly for Wales

Senedd pays tribute to Nelson Mandela

A minute's silence will be observed in the National Assembly and AMs will be able to pay tributes to Nelson Mandela when they meet again on Tuesday.

A book of condolence has also been opened in the Senedd.

A Nelson Mandela Book of Condolence has been opened at the Senedd Credit: National Assembly for Wales

Flags have been lowered to half-mast outside the Senedd today and will be lowered again on the day of Nelson Mandela's funeral - Sunday 15th December.

Flags fly at at half-mast outside the Senedd Credit: ITV News / Adrian Masters

Payday loans under discussion at Senedd

Heightening the possible dangers of payday lenders will be discussed Credit: Owen Humphreys / PA

Plans to tackle payday lenders is being discussed in the Senedd today.

There has been a call for legislation to protect people who fall victim to short-term high interest loans.

Assembly Member Bethan Jenkins says the law would improve financial education in schools if the bill is passed.

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