ASSEMBLY ELECTION 2003: 5am SPECIAL: We Need to Take Stock, Plaid Cymru Admits

Article excerpt

PLAID Cymru this morning conceded defeat in the National Assembly as they suffered huge swings to Labour.

The party said it was clear it was not going to take power after losing key seats to Labour.

A party spokeswoman said, ``There is no way we are going to be the biggest party. It is our aim to stop Labour winning a majority but it is not looking good.''

Suffering swings of up to double figures in some seats, it was a measure of how bad the night was for Plaid that holds like those of leader Ieuan Wyn Jones were seen as a big victory, even though his majority was much reduced.

He said afterwards, ``This is a new political situation in Wales we have to adjust and I understand as much as anyone else. ``PC has come a very long way in a very short time and we have some very important lessons to learn for the future, and I am determined that we learn those lessons.''

The biggest loss for the party was Plaid's control of Llanelli, where Helen Mary Jones was AM, which Catherine Thomas took for Labour with the narrowest of margins - 21 votes.

Although she will continue as a regional list AM, Ms Jones's her seat marked the trio of targets for Labour and made their march towards a working majority a lot easier. …