Aled grew up in the old mining village of Rhosllannerchrugog which is just outside Wrexham. Rhos, as it is known locally, is famous for being a strong Welsh speaking community of which Aled is still an active member, living close to his boyhood home. He is still Secretary of the Ebeneser Chapel in Rhos where he has been playing the organ since he was 11! In 1993 he married LLinos, who is now a lecturer at Yale College in Wrexham – they have two teenage sons, Osian and Ifan.
Educated locally at Ysgol y Ponciau, Ysgol y Grango and Ysgol Rhiwabon, Aled went on to study law at the University of Wales in Aberystwyth. After obtaining his solicitors’ professional qualification he practiced at the Wrexham firm of Geoffrey Morris and Ashton where Aled specialized in crime and family law and became a partner. He ceased to practice as a solicitor when he was elected Leader of Wrexham County Borough in 2005.
Aled has been actively involved in politics since 1985 when he successfully campaigned to rescue the derelict Rhos Miners’ Institute (known locally as the Stiwt) – at the time the Labour-run Council proposed demolition! Now it is a very successful community facility providing a meeting place for local groups and a venue for touring shows and concerts. Aled has been its Secretary since 1987. In 2011 Aled did a second fundraising parachute jump for the Stiwt 25 years after his first – but the second was more sky dive than jump, and Aled is worried what he might be asked to do in another 25 years!
In 1991 Aled was elected to Wrexham Council initially for the Rhos ward and later Ponciau before standing down in 2012. He served as Mayor of Wrexham in 2003-04 and was elected Leader of Wrexham County Borough Council in March 2005.
Prior to his election to the National Assembly for Wales, Aled also held the position of Chair of the Wales Strategic Migration Partnership and served as the Welsh representative on the UK Local Government Association’s Asylum and Refugee Working Group. In November 2007 Aled was named “Councillor of the Year” at the ITV Wales Politician of the Year Awards.Aled was the Welsh Local Government Association Spokesperson for Housing from 2005 to 2011 and in 2008 was given additional responsibility when his portfolio was expanded to include Environment, Sustainability and Waste. He is a former Chairman of Waste Awareness Wales and was also a member of the Wales Climate Change Commission.
Aled was elected as a North Wales Regional Member of the National Assembly for Wales for the Welsh Liberal Democrats in May 2011.