Following the hugely disappointing news of the cancellation of the Circuit of Wales the decision to scrap the Severn crossing tolls is very welcome news for South East Wales and for Wales in general.

The tolls are nothing short of a tax on Welsh business. Can I remind the electorate that Ukip were the first and most vociferous party to advocate this course of action, even mounting a demonstration on the bridge overlooking the toll booths calling for their abolition?

Ukip thought the matter so important Nigel Farage himself attended to add weight to Ukip Wales Campaign. It was also one of our Assembly manifesto promises.

Returning to the Circuit of Wales decision. The main reason given was that the Office for National Statistics (ONS) would not give a definitive decision on whether the £375m would constitute money already spent, thus taking it out of the Assemblies budget at one stroke, or whether it was a deferred payment. This begs the question, why has it taken all of eight years to expose this fundamental piece of information, given it was so crucial to the scheme proceeding. We in Ukip will still keep pushing the government to reverse their decision.

However it seems the Cardiff centric ruling classes are content to see the northern valley towns remain, not only the poorest part of Wales, but also the whole of Europe. We are reminded time and again in the Senedd of the contribution so called European money has made to the Welsh economy. After 17 years of Labour rule in Cardiff precious little benefit has been seen by our valley communities.

A closing comment. Ken Skates cabinet minister for economy, infrastructure and skills, on making the announcement that the Welsh Government would not be proceeding with the Circuit of Wales, said that the money would be better spent on schools and hospitals. This I’m afraid exposes the fundamental flaw in the socialist ideals of this Welsh Government.

As laudable as it is to build these institutions the truth is that they “cost” money on an ongoing basis. The Circuit of Wales was to “create” money, which could then, of course, be used for the construction and running of schools and hospitals. Only by investing in projects such as the Circuit of Wales can Wales become a strong economic entity, not one dependent on hand outs either from the UK or the European governments.