Page last updated at 13:24 GMT, Wednesday, 9 July 2008 14:24 UK

First Welsh law's royal approval

Welsh coat of arms
The Royal Badge of Wales will be seen on all future laws

The first piece of Welsh legislation in modern times has become law.

Under the Government of Wales Act, the Welsh assembly gained powers to make legislation in some areas without permission from Westminster.

The NHS Redress Measure has been approved by the Queen, making it easier and quicker to claim compensation after negligent treatment by the Welsh NHS.

The legislation will also carry the Welsh coat of arms, or Royal Badge of Wales, for the first time.

This was the first measure, or Welsh law, to complete the process.

The Royal Badge of Wales will also appear on all future Welsh laws.

It is based on the arms of the native princes of Wales, dating back to the 13th Century, and designed by the Garter King of Arms, Peter Gwynne-Jones.

Healthy eating

Assembly Presiding Officer Dafydd Elis Thomas said it was an "historic milestone for Wales and the National Assembly for Wales".

"The passing of the first assembly measure into law heralds a burgeoning confidence in the new law-making constitution of Wales," he said.

"In addition to the NHS measure, three other measures are being considered by the assembly - the Healthy Eating Schools Measure, the Learner Travel Measure and the Learning and Skills Measure.

"Two other measures - the Playing Fields Measure and the Recycling Measure are also awaiting consideration," he added.

The assembly is also due to gain more powers, to standardise charging for home care across Wales.

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