Unique Paths to Devolution: Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland

This report describes the unique ways Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland became part of the UK, and asks whether the UK has reached its sell-by date.

The report, by Arthur Aughey from Northern Ireland, Eberhard Bort from Scotland, and John Osmond from Wales, says that further change is inevitable. It says that as a result of the referendum on 3 March, in which Wales gained further legislative powers, the creation of a legal jurisdiction for Wales separate from England, as already applies in Scotland and Northern Ireland, looks inevitable.

Meanwhile, following the 2010 general election the Westminster Conservative Liberal Democrat coalition is committed to implementing the recommendations of the Calman Commission, giving the Scottish Parliament greater powers, including greater taxation powers.

The report also notes growing demands at Westminster for England to have powers over its domestic concerns in the way devolution has allowed for the three Celtic parts of the UK. This could begin with “English votes for English laws” within the House of Commons and evolve towards some kind of distinctive English Parliament.

Click here to download Unique Paths to Devolution: Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland