The Welsh Assembly is to launch an official investigation into the state of the media in Wales. The inquiry is expected to begin work in September, and will examine “emerging and future issues” faced by both English language and Welsh language media in the country.
The moves comes after the controversial decision by the biggest newspaper company in Wales, Media Wales, to axe 22 editorial jobs. Media Wales is owned by the Trinity Mirror Group, who also own the Daily Record and Sunday Mail in Scotland. In June this year the company cut 90 jobs from its Scottish titles.
Originally the Welsh inquiry had proposed to examine only broadcasting. Changes announced by the Westminster government to the funding of the BBC and the Welsh language channel S4C have raised concerns in Wales that the quality and amount of Welsh-produced output may drop.
Plaid Cymru Assembly Member for South West Wales, Bethan Jenkins, led the call for the inquiry. Speaking before a meeting of the Assembly’s Assembly’s Communities, Equality and Local Government Committee, Ms Jenkins said: “With the changes to how S4C and the BBC are funded and the challenges to the print media and to broadcasting in general, now is the time for us to do something, because I think that the public would also like Wales to take an interest in this particular issue.”