Brecon and Radnorshire AM Kirsty Williams says votes for 16 and 17 year olds are long overdue - and has thrown down the gauntlet to Theresa to extend the franchise for the rest of the UK.

The Welsh Liberal Democrat AM was commenting on proposals put forward by the Labour government in the Welsh Assembly to reform the voting system, giving 16 and 17 year olds the right to vote in local elections under a so-called Single Transferable Vote(STV) system.

At the launch of the proposals last week, Cabinet Secretary for Local Government and Public Services, Alun Davies, said the reforms were designed to include people who had become 'disengaged' from the political process.

Ms Williams said: "In the year in which we are commemorating 100 years since most women in the UK were granted the vote and were able for the first time to stand for election to Parliament, it could not be more appropriate for us in Wales to be extending the franchise to all 16 and 17 year olds."

"However, this is just a first step, as it only applies to local council elections in Wales. We need now to see it extended to National Assembly and Westminster Parliamentary elections and I was dismayed to hear David Liddington MP, standing in for the Prime Minister at Prime Minister’s Questions today, confirm the Tories’ outright opposition to this change. Their wholly illogical and unjust resistance is purely based on the calculation that young people tend not to vote Conservative."

"Rather than denying young people who are, in many cases, working, paying taxes and serving their country in the armed services the right to vote purely on the basis of self-interest, they should be concentrating on living up to Mrs May’s rhetoric about making the UK a society ‘that works for everyone’ by giving all our young people a right to vote in all elections."

She was supported by Welsh Liberal Democrat leader Jane Dodds, who said Wales had the opportunity to 'be bold' and create a fairer system.

"Wales has the opportunity to be bold and create an electoral system for local elections that makes local government more accountable, improves political engagement and is fair to everyone in Wales," she said.

"I urge all parties to seize this opportunity by extending the vote to 16 and 17 year olds and delivering STV for local elections."