The original plan was to launch our volunteer-run English-language national website for Wales, Nation.Cymru, towards the end of the summer as the new political term began.
Theresa May’s announcement of a General Election on 8 June has changed that.
Whatever the different political parties may say, this election will be a referendum on a Hard Brexit. And hopefully, it will be a nuanced debate, with detailed manifestos, which will not give politicians the opportunity to decipher a Yes or No outcome in whatever way they would like.
Last year’s Brexit referendum made the need for an English-language national website for Wales crystal clear. Whatever the benefits of Brexit for the UK as a whole, there was almost no discussion about the effects on Wales as a country, as there was in Scotland.
Welsh voters went to the polls, through little fault of their own, without the basic facts about how Brexit would impact us. With the media continuing to decline in Wales, this democratic deficit looks like it will get worse before it gets better, just at the time when Wales needs to hold a reasoned debate about its own future. Scotland, Northern Ireland and England are having this internal discussion about their own places within the UK – Wales must have one too.
It’s very important that Wales does not walk blindly into another historic vote on its own future. If nothing else Nation.Cymru can be another platform on which an informed discussion about what options would be best for Wales can take place.
My hope now is that we can launch something in the next few weeks. It may not be the Nation.Cymru we had envisaged, but we can continue to build towards that goal. To stick to our original timeline and ignore one of the biggest political events for the next four years is not a reasonable option.
Nation.Cymru will be staffed by volunteers and financed by donations and subscriptions. If you would like to contribute towards the site, please do so here.