The chair of the body that manages Wales' natural resources has quit following a row over timber being sold without it being offered for sale on the open market.

It is the second time that a Wales Audit Office (WAO) report into Natural Resources Wales (NRW) has expressed concern that timber grown on public woodland had been sold without it going through the tendering process.

There was strong criticism from politicians and NRW chairwoman Diane McCrea has now resigned.

In a recent statement the Welsh Government's energy, planning and rural affairs secretary Lesley Griffiths said she had accepted the resignation.

"This is an appropriate response in the light of the recent WAO report which qualifies the accounts for the third time, and the concerns and criticisms from all parties in the Assembly,’’ she said.

An interim chair will be appointed while a permanent replacement is recruited.

Ms Griffiths said the chief executive of NRW was taking the WAO’s concerns seriously and was implementing changes to ensure strong governance.

"To help with this, a senior member of Welsh Government staff will be seconded to NRW. This will allow NRW to continue to build its important role in protecting and enhancing the environment in Wales,’’ she said.