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CARDIFF TIMES FREE

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      60% of drivers want insurance based on how they drive yet only 5% are given the choice 66% of motorists have no fear over telematics, this rises to 71% in motorists aged 65+ Drivers in the UK increasingly want usage-based insurance (UBI). 60% of drivers would take a telematics or ‘black box’ policy today to save money and improve safety, according to a studyi of over 3,000 motorists. Currently, insurers only offer this type of policy to approximately 5% of the population (typically the youngest, most inexperienced drivers) meaning that the vast majority of drivers who could benefit from lower insurance costs are missing out. Not only is there a demand for telematics or black box types of insurance policies; they can help to improve driving skills. Road accidents remain one of the top ten causes of death worldwideii, yet new analysis of UK Government road accident data (stats19)iii now suggests that black box insurance has led to a dramatic 35.32% reduction in collision rates in 17-19 year olds over the past six yearsiv. LexisNexis Risk Solutions, a leading data and analytics provider to the insurance sector commissioned the study. In parallel, LexisNexis undertook its own analysis of road casualty data amongst 17-19 year olds in relation to telematics insurance take-up. The study revealed that of those interested in taking a telematics policy today, 42% would buy for a cheaper insurance premium with 41% citing fairer premiums as the biggest benefit. Whilst for 21%, potentially becoming safer drivers is the best aspect of telematics insurance. Martyn Mathews, Senior Director of Motor and Telematics, Insurance, LexisNexis Risk Solutions says: “Our findings should provide a catalyst for the insurance sector to go beyond young drivers to offer the benefits of black box insurance products, such as the potential for money savings and improved driving habits, to a wider audience of motorists. Getting drivers confident in how their driving data is analysed is key. We need to be absolutely clear with customers about how their data is managed, who can access this data and when. If we can help more motorists get access to UBI, ultimately it may have a significant positive impact on driving behaviour and could even bring benefits along the lines we have seen with compulsory seatbelts, ABS and road design improvements.” In particular, the LexisNexis study sought to understand how insurance providers could overcome the barriers to adoption by offering a choice telematics devices or solutions. For example, smartphone driving apps are likely to appeal to more experienced motorists, whereas a fixed black box, or self-installed device maybe more suitable for young and older drivers paying higher premiums due to their risk of an accident. Interestingly, while two thirds of respondents have no privacy fears about using a telematics insurance policy, those aged 65 and over were the most receptive to the idea.” Martyn Mathews continues: “We urge motorists to ask for telematics policies that will not only help them manage their costs but also monitor their driving behaviour. At the same time, we encourage the Government to start to seriously examine data which may show a correlation between telematics policy take-up and the reduction in road casualties in young drivers and do more to incentivise drivers of all ages to take up black box insurance. Wider availability and adoption of these policies can not only help to bring down premiums for drivers of any age but can also help create better driving habits across the board.”

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Black Box - March 2019 page 1

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editors letter

cardiff times

Welcome PUBLISHER Cardiff Times Hi All, and welcome to our March issue.

EDITOR Louise Denning 07903 947594

February was a month of mixed emotions. We sadly had to say goodbye to our beloved dog Skip after being a part of our family for 12 years. That was a really hard thing to do and very emotional, but he’s at peace now.

FEATURES EDITOR Mark Denning 07758 247194 SALES & MARKETING Beth beth@cardiff-times.co.uk

CONTRIBUTORS Wyn Evans, Vince Nolan, Carl Marsh, Brett Salway, Michael James, Sara John, Natalie McCulloch, Craig Muncey, Ilona Cabral, Lily Hill

On a joyous occasion for any Welsh rugby supporter, we saw Wales beat England in the Six Nations. What a match it was, and now Wales are the only country left in the tournament who can win the Grand Slam! Just in case anybody doesn’t know, Saturday the 16th March is the final game of the Six Nations for Wales, at home against Ireland. At the time of writing it is half term for our children, and we’re finalising the pages for print. Once completed, we will take the rest of the week off with the children and hope this record-breaking warm weather lasts the whole week! As always we are spoilt for choice for things to do and see in Cardiff, so please take the time to read through the whole magazine - there is always something for everyone. This month we have an Easter Feature - yes, we know Easter this year isn’t until April but we thought we’d give you plenty of time to plan ahead! Carl Marsh has his usual extensive round up of celebrity interviews, previews and reviews, while there is a poignant article from Craig Muncey exploring the tragic circumstances of the death of the Cardiff City striker Emiliano Sala whilst travelling in a plane over the English Channel. Whatever you do in March, we hope the sun continues to shine, everybody enjoys their St. David’s Day celebrations, and don’t forget to spoil your wonderful mum this month!

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March

CONTENTS FEATURES 14 March Diary

46 Going To The Game? By Sara John

18 “The Innate Ability To See The Good And Beauty In The World”

50 ‘And Another Thing…’ By Vince Nolan

By Wyn Evans

54 Puzzle Mania 26 Beauty - Feel Beautiful! 60 How Green Was (And Now Is Again) My Valley By Michael James

64 Ciliegino Italian Restaurant Review By Brett Salway

68 Sala’s Flight - Destination, Tragedy By Craig Muncey

30 Charity Can Begin At Home By Natalie McCulloch

71 Puzzle Mania Solutions

34 “In The Words Of…” By Carl Marsh

72 The Sweet Smell Of Welshcakes

40 Books To Look Out For In March

By Sara John

41 RHS Reveals Highlights For Flower Show Cardiff 2019 42 Feature - How To Spend Your Easter! 10 10

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Cardiff Care Home Worker Aims To Take Great Strides For Children’s Charity “More than 10 children and young people are diagnosed with cancer every day in the UK, and so this is such a worthy cause. I believe it’s so important to do anything to support families and young children, especially when they are going through times of illness.

A receptionist at a Cardiff care home is putting her mind and body on the line in a bid to raise money for charity by running the 2019 London Marathon - after being inspired by her son who ran the race three years ago. Lynette Hartman, who works at Tŷ Llandaff, a private care home offering nursing, residential and respite care in Pontcanna, watched her son Matthew, 34, complete the race in 2015. Now the 61-year-old is determined to do the same and will be running for Children with Cancer UK on April 28. She hopes to raise £1,500 for the charity, having already raised £300 whilst still in the early stages of training.

“For five years I have done voluntary work for Homestart, working with children under 5 and their families, as well as my part-time work working for Tŷ Llandaff. All my work is about making connections with people and hopefully helping them in some way.” Tŷ Llandaff, the care home where Lynette is one of the longest serving members of staff, having worked as receptionist since February 17, not long after the Home opened, is giving her their full support. Care home manager Janice Evans is encouraging Lynette to promote the cause, and activities coordinator Melanie Geoghegan is helping generate ideas to raise money.

Children with Cancer UK are the leading national children's cancer charity - dedicated to the fight against childhood cancer with the overall goal that no child dies of cancer. Lynette, who has a five-month-old grandson Oscar, and turns 62 just weeks before the London Marathon, said: “When I was watching Matthew run in London three years ago, I was so inspired by the energy, the masses of people running, of all ages, I knew I had to do it one day. Having become a grandmother last year, I decided this year was the year to take the bull by the horns, and if I don’t do it now, I might never do it.”

Janice said: “Lynette is such an inspirational woman to us all. She loves a challenge, and she is so thoughtful and giving, a real people person. Lynette is an asset to Tŷ Llandaff as in her role here she is the heart of the home, and has contact with all the families and residents and is loved by all. Everyone wishes her well with this phenomenal challenge, and we’re all keen to help her raise the £3,000 she has set herself.”

Lynette is relatively new to running although she belongs to a gym and enjoys box-fit and yoga, she is using the London Marathon’s official 16-week training plan to get herself ready, including running to work.

Mel added: “When we see her come in in her running gear we can see how hard she is training and although she likes to keep a low-profile and isn’t one for the limelight she definitely deserves to be celebrated. We’ll all be watching the marathon here on April 28.”

Initially Lynette was unsuccessful in the general ballot for places, but then applied to run for Children with Cancer UK, who gave her one of their spaces. As a family and child-focused person this suited Lynette perfectly. “Children are the future,” said Lynette, who also does voluntary work with mums and young children.

Here is the link – where you can donate on line and send a gook luck wish to Lynette - https:// uk.virginmoneygiving.com/lynette-hartmanSAVMLMBONDS3332019-6444

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Ty Llandaff - March 2019 page 1

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march diary              

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To mark 500 years since the death of the artist Leonardo da Vinci, National Museum Cardiff have created an event featuring 12 of his greatest pieces. These pieces are from the Royal Collection which contains his most infamous pieces. This event is open from 10:00am to 5:00pm, and tickets cost ÂŁ5 for adults, ÂŁ4 for concessions, and children aged 16 and under are admitted for free. National Museum Cardiff www.museum.wales/cardiff/

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Tchaikovsky’s celebrated Fantasy Overture captures the passion and pathos of Shakespeare’s play, and when it first appeared in 1869 firmly established the composer’s gift for tragic lyricism. This iconic piece is featured in this event which will take place at St David’s Hall, and begins at 6:30pm, with ticket prices varying from £10 to £41. St David’s Hall, Cardiff www.stdavidshallcardiff.co.uk

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This walking & tasting tour includes 7 tasting stops showcasing Welsh and Cardiff’s cosmopolitan food. Tastings include Welsh cheeses, cockles & laverbread, Welsh beers & cider plus much more. Along the way you pass beautiful parks, majestic buildings & key landmarks including Cardiff Castle, Principality Stadium ‘the home of Welsh rugby. Starting at Cardiff Castle www.lovingwelshfood.uk

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George Ezra shot to fame in 2014 after he released his number 1 hit single “Budapest�. Since then, he has released a second album which featured two more hit singles, and he’s toured on multiple occasions as a supporting act for other artists. He is now headlining his first arena tour, with one of the stops being the Motorpoint Arena. Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff www.motorpointarenacardiff.co.uk

What's on Diary - March 2019 page 1

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March Diary

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Andrew Bird is a comedian who is on the rise after supporting iconic comedians such as Michael McIntyre. He’s also helped to write TV shows such as ‘8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown’. After years of being a supporting act, he is now a featuring comedian on the ‘Ha Ha Time Tour’. Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff www.motorpointarenacardiff.co.uk

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Times are changing. Girls are wearing trousers and Hollywood has come to a sleepy English village in the shape of a beautiful film star. Miss Marple begins to question her place in the world until a mysterious death calls into question the past of all those present. Everyone's version of events is different. Can Miss Marple unravel the tangle of lies? New Theatre, Cardiff www.newtheatrecardiff.co.uk

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Dan Snow features in the exclusive ‘History Hit’ UK tour, with this well-known historian, broadcaster and TV presenter recounting his memorable experiences from throughout his successful career. Dan, who is also known as ‘The History Guy’, includes historical facts relating to each individual area that he has on his tour, which ensures that the audience will learn something about Cardiff. St David’s Hall, Cardiff www.stdavidshallcardiff.co.uk

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Back for the third year in the row, this awards ceremony features different musical talents in Cardiff, and promotes and celebrates the best of music in this city. The overall aim of this event is to recognise the achievements and talents of different organisations and individuals who have contributed to the enhancement of Cardiff’s unique and diverse musical scene. Tickets are currently on sale for £15, with individuals receiving a cocktail upon entry. Tramshed, Cardiff www.tramshedcardiff.com

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This event is mainly aimed at the 3-11 age group, and features the likes of Ade Adepitan, Catherine Fisher and Eloise Williams. This festival aims to ensure that the children attending the festival remain enthusiastic about reading literature, and features events such as writing workshops and book readings by their favourite authors. Tickets cost ÂŁ5 and the festival lasts from 10:00am to 5:00pm. City Hall, Cardiff www.cardiffkidslitfest.com/

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“the innate ability to see the good and beauty in the world” By Wyn Evans My daughter, The Girl, is now in Year 8 at High School and coming up towards her thirteenth birthday. As befits an almost-teenager she increasingly pushes at boundaries to see what she can get away with. Although she has Down Syndrome (DS) she is just like her typically-developing peers in this regard. In the week at school prior to half term, The Girl received a reprimand in the form of a "discussion about behaviour at the end of lesson/break time", which is called a 'B2'. She received it because she "ignored her Learning Support Assistant [LSA] on more than three occasions after the bell had gone for Period 4 yesterday". The reprimand ('Consequences') system goes: B1. Formal reprimand; B2. Discussion about behaviour at the end of lesson/ break time; B3. Departmental sanctions (e.g., referral to head of department, detention); B4. Referral to Achievement Leader. Formal half hour school detention; B5. Senior Staff one hour detention. There then follow: “Referral to Achievement Leader; Referral to Head of School; Referral to Assistant/ Deputy Headteachers and onwards to the Headteacher; Exclusion (Fixed Term or Permanent) or Exclusion Room”. In Year 7 The Girl had two B1s. One was for not paying attention, the other was for snatching her pencil back from the hand of an LSA who had just taken it off her. The Rewards system is: Merit Stamps, Lapel Badges, and Achievement Postcards. In Year 7 she got in excess of 260 Merits and 5 Achievement Postcards and received certificates of commendation from the Headteacher on stage at the Prize giving ceremony. So far in Year 8 she has 94 Merit Stamps.

with her). The Boss asked her why she had failed to stop and got the following reply: "I blame my ears..." [she grabs her right ear then the left] "...you see THIS one wanted to listen to my LSA but this OTHER ear wanted to listen to my bestie and that ear won"! Then, later on in the evening, evidently thinking she ought to redeem herself in her mum's eyes, she told The Boss "I want to pay you a compliment. You're kind and loving and fun and clever. But the best thing about you is... [a pregnant pause] ...is that you are a nutcase", at which saying The Girl collapsed with laughter and ran off!

As for that pesky B2, The Girl is 'light-touch' supervised at lunchtime, meaning an LSA keeps an eye on her from a distance. Other kids have this too. She explained to The Boss and me that she'd told her LSA that she intended to go and get her best friend from the football pitch and... off she went. Her LSA was concerned that Period 4 was about to begin and called out to her to go to her classroom. At the same time she says her bestie called out to her to come with her and... off she went (to her classroom for registration as it happens, where the LSA caught up

All of which makes me wonder what level of ‘B’ reprimand I would have received for some of my High school stunts. During Year 8 Sports’ Day a poorly-aimed discus hit me flat in the middle of my back, knocking me unconscious. An ambulance was called, as was my mam. I suppose I was lucky that it hit me flat-on rather than edge-on and, as you can tell, I suffered no long-term damage. The poor teachers must have been having kittens. The consequence of

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CT Feature

indecision than cowardice on my part but I held my silence, stayed put, and some minutes later breathed a long sigh of relief when Jones (Art) turned to his left, exited the classroom and descended the stairs. But let’s indulge in some ‘whataboutery’, an alternative history. I have no reason to believe other than that Jones (Art) had a perfectly sound constitution and nerves of steel. Even so, imagine you were him; leaning against the sill, enjoying the games, maybe planning tomorrow’s lessons, or imagining how in a few years you would be hailed in the same terms as Monet and Matisse... when, seemingly out of thin air, in a classroom you just knew to be empty, stepped-out a spotty teenager spluttering some words of remorse or apology. It would need a whole new class of ‘B’s: “B6: causing a coronary to afflict a teacher (Art): referral to Crown Prosecution Service and one hour’s detention.”

all this was that I ‘mitched’ Sports Day in Year 9. I was a pupil at Preseli Secondary school, the central feature of which was a square, three-storey towerblock full of classrooms, overlooking the sports-field. While the rest of the school made its way to the sports area, I turned as if going to the loos and snuck upstairs to the top floor.

The moral of this story might seem to be never to admit your guilt but I prefer to think that the moral is not to put yourself into impossible situations with no means of escape. All in all I think that The Girl’s reaction was best – fess-up but blame one of your ears!

All was well for an hour or so. I rested my arms on the window-sill and enjoyed watching the events from this position of relative safety. Imagine then my horror when I heard footsteps echoing up the stairwell. The classroom I was in had a heating pipe running around the bottom of the walls. This prevented the class tallboy/cupboard from fitting flush with the wall, creating a sort-of Priest’s hole, into which I crammed myself. The footsteps entered the classroom. From this distance in time I cannot recall with certainty which teacher it was but I think it was Mr Jones (Art), a balding, rotund man who became a very significant and famous artist. He walked across the classroom and, essentially, took my place at the window-sill. If he had turned his head ninety degrees to the right he would have seen into the gap between the cupboard and the wall and gone on to behold a trembling, fourteen year old boy doing his best not to breathe and to remain still and silent.

Before I sign-off I just want to remind y’all that 21st March is World Down Syndrome Day. DS is a genetic condition resulting from a third copy of the 21st chromosome. Hence 21st March, 21:3. Perhaps because the chromosomes look under the microscope like a pair of socks, the fact that there is a third copy, unpaired, is why the DS community celebrates 21st March by wearing odd, unmatched socks. So why not send your kids to school on 21st March in odd socks and tell them a little about DS. I have come across a smashing definition of Down Syndrome (from https:// gabethebabeandco.com/) that I’d like to leave you with. Those of you who have followed The Girl through these columns over the past five and a half years can surely attest to its accuracy: “Down Syndrome: the innate ability to see the good and beauty in the world, to radiate joy and happiness, and to offer a unique perspective on life with the ability to change others’ perceptions.”1

Minutes passed by with no sign of the teacher having had his fill of spectating. With each passing moment I was getting more and more resigned to being caught. It was obvious that Jones (Art) would turn his head and see me. I tried to figure out whether it would make my crime less heinous if I stepped out voluntarily – as it were, if I outed myself before he saw me. Or perhaps I should make my presence known by way of a cough? I think it was more a case of

Footnote: 1. Available as a T-shirt from https:// gabethebabeandco.com/?fbclid=IwAR1mdLOqlLv1r_RvBIdshpAX8wPOjoo6l27m8xMPAstQDpm9FPN_fx9m_4

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‘if in doubt, check it out’: all you need to know about mole removal Unsightly facial moles can be a cause of great distress and often get bigger as we get older; the unfortunate Nanny McPhee effect. A simple search on the internet provides a whole host of at-home mole removal treatments, but this is one area where expert treatment is required.

Avoid beauty clinics Discount deals offered by beauty clinics advertising mole removal can be very tempting, but the treatments and devices they use are often not the most appropriate. IPL, electrolysis and cryotherapy are often used but do not produce optimal results and can cause scarring. A beauty therapist will also not be medically trained in assessing moles.

Can I get my mole removal on the NHS? The NHS used to freely offer mole removal, but as our health service has become increasingly cash-strapped, they have now changed their policy on mole removal, only treating ones that are a cause for concern. A private dermatology clinic can be your best option for mole removal as any further investigations will be carried out promptly, to ensure peace of mind.

Know your moles There is more than one type of mole. Skin-coloured moles are often benign and are relatively easy to remove as the skin cells are superficial. At the Specialist Skin Clinic we perform a shave excision on skin-coloured moles; this is a very quick treatment, with no stitches required and within a couple of months there will be no noticeable scar.

Avoid DIY mole removal Many of the tips offered on the internet are pretty scary and likely to result in scarring at best. Users are advised to scratch the surface of the mole before applying treatments that will ‘cauterise’ it. Many are unfortunately left with indents in the skin or red, lumpy scars that actually look far worse than the original mole did. At the Specialist Skin Clinic we offer a range of aesthetic treatments for scarring, but we cannot remove scars entirely.

For more information on our mole removal treatments, call 02920 617690 to arrange a consultation with Dr. Maria Gonzalez or go to www.specialistskinclinic.uk for more information.

More worrying, though, is that users could be overlooking warning signs of a malignant melanoma that will require urgent intervention. Suspicious moles should be checked out A dermatologist will be able to identify whether a mole looks suspicious and arrange for it to be sent for analysis. Melanoma is a very common form of skin cancer, with over 14,000 cases diagnosed every year, and the best chance of success is prompt treatment.

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029 2048 1486

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Feel Beautiful! Vera Wang Embrace Rosebuds & Vanilla is a romantic floral oriental fragrance, with a blend of Damascene Rose, Mandarin Oil which balance out the Sweet Magnolia heart. 30ml RRP £25.00

Lavera Beautiful Lips Q10 lipsticks will be Mums best friend this spring. All four colours are cruelty-free, certified natural and organic by NATRUE, and free from parabens, phthalates, parraffinium or petrochemicals. RRP £12.90 www.lavera.co.uk

NEW - Floral Fragrance from Estée Lauder Beautiful Belle Eau de Parfum Spray. With notes of Lychee, Rose petals and Mimosa you are sure to capture Mums heart. Eau de Parfum Spray 30ml RRP £52.00 www.esteelauder.co.uk

Introducing Forget me Not, which includes two 15ml purse sprays with your choice of scent. Choose from the iconic La Panthére or the latest addition, Carat. Presented in a beautiful red case, ensuring a touch of elegance whilst travelling. Cartier Forget me Not La Panthére RRP £55.00 Cariter Forget me Not Carat RRP £47.00

Billion Dollar Smile products use natural plant and fruit extracts to create brighter whiter smiles. Amongst their range, is the innovative Fluoride free Whitening Tooth Polish. This is a blend of ingredients derived from nature, including coconut oil activated charcoal and pineapple enzyme which creates an effective whitening polish that is gentle enough to use every day, replacing normal tooth polish. Full range available at: www.billiondollarsmilecosmetics.co.uk

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Exfoliate is a gentle yet effective glycolic acid toner which evens-out skin tone, brightens the complexion, tightens pores and promotes skin cell renewal. Exfoliate diminishes dullness to deliver a glowing and rejuvenated complexion. Erase & Renew – The Double Cleansing System is a complete double cleansing system that thoroughly cleanses, nourishes and illuminates the skin. Exfoliate RRP £25.00 Erase & Renew Double Cleansing RRP £52. 00 www.pestleandmortar.com

NEW - A manifesto in a scarlet heart, the lyrics of a new hymn to joy. Flower by Kenzo Eau De Vie is a vibrating pulsation. The poppy sings out and sets the tempo: a declaration of love for life, to eagerly join in to celebrate every moment. A hit to share and sing in an ever more beautiful world. 30ml RRP £41.00 50ml RRP £59.00

NEW - Sparkling and luminous, like the Jimmy Choo woman who wears it, this new edition of Jimmy Choo Blossom for spring 2019 is like a bouquet of flowers that explodes into bloom in the springtime. A floral, fruity, woody scent that is the perfect evocation of the optimism and vivacity of this season.. 60ml RRP £48.00

NEW - The sleek, travel-ready palette is designed to effortlessly encase two solid perfumes for scent on-the-go. The palette can be filled with a choice of two Jo Malone London scents from a selection of ten, to create your own irresistible pair. www.jomalone.co.uk RRP £24.00

Enjoy a clean and natural shave with the new benecos ‘For Men Only’ shaving range! Products are free from paraffins, parabens, silicones, PEGs, synthetic colours, artificial fragrances, chemical preservatives and are never tested on animals. Benecos Shaving Cream Benecos Shaving Brush www.benecos.co.uk

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Craniosacral Therapy brings about a eep state o relaaon

CARDIFF

This can help resolve problems such as back or neck pain, heaaches or any stress relate symptoms It can also help spee your recovery rom accient, operaon or illness

(NORTH) or 02920 601790 (SOUTH)

Craniosacral Therapy enhances health an well–being or more inormaon, contact !uy Clover RCST on 029 20 481844 or mail@juyclovercouk wwwjuyclovercouk 28 28

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charity can begin at home By Natalie McCulloch

According to the English dictionary, to spring clean is to clean all of a place, especially your house, very well, including parts you do not often clean.

has 3,370 cubic feet of his/her home stuffed with items that they rarely, or never, use. That's twice as much clutter as we used to have 30 years ago’. Further to this, on average every person in the UK throws away their own body weight in rubbish every seven weeks! Every year the UK produces enough waste to fill the Principality Stadium twice a day every day of the year, and in less than 2 hours the UK produces enough waste to fill the Albert Hall. (2019 Amgen Cymru).

Why spring? Originally, spring was an ideal time for homeowners to clean away all the dust, dirt and soot from the months of trying to keep the winter cold out via burning candles, coal and wood. So, with the warmer springtime months on their way, homeowners had a green flag to freshen and clean up their homes. Years later we may not have the same reason to dig out our tidying toolkit but the term ‘spring clean’ lives on! There is even an official National SpringCleaning Week which has supported the idea for thorough domestic room by room and top to bottom spring cleaning since 2003. This takes place between the 6th and 12th of March. Although officially spring begins 31st March, there is no need to hold back on cleaning until this time, your spring clean can start whenever you feel like it.

The reason for such a build up will vary from person to person. It may be to do with embarking on new projects requiring equipment which sticks around longer than the hobby; being drawn into trends of the latest ‘must have item’ ; getting a new tenant who brings more stuff into your home (kids moving back from university counts!) or lacking time/motivation to keep on top of things. Another felon is unwanted gifts! Yes, it’s the thought that counts and you should never look a gift horse in the mouth, but If you didn’t like it or simply know you won’t use it, then why are you keeping it? An online poll of 4,459 people by YouGov for the children’s charity found that 44% of people in the UK throw away or forget about an unsuitable gift. More than a third of those questioned (38%) simply put unsuitable presents in a cupboard and forget about them. Can you relate?

So why should you spring into cleaning mode? Do you even need to? Only you can decide! Perhaps you live in a very tidy environment throughout the year, in which case you can sit back and enjoy the many wonderful things springtime has to offer. However, for a large proportion of us, certain parts of our homes could benefit from a bit of a blitz once in a while. Especially after the festive period where we accumulate more things but often have less free time to find suitable homes for them! It can be surprising how quickly things build up (as someone who has moved houses a lot, I can vouch for this!). The reality is, a lot of these things we simply don’t need to keep. Do you have a ‘junk’ draw? A stack of boxes to sort through which never get sorted? Or perhaps a collection of DVDs you’re unlikely to watch, books you’ll never read and clothes you’ll never wear again? If so, you’re not alone! According to the Guardian newspaper, ‘the average British person

Taking this to the extreme, 2-5% of UK’s Population Are Considered Compulsive Hoarders, or people who simply refuse to let go of large piles of stuff they don’t need whether it be pens, old notebooks, clothes, books, CDS and even cooking utensils. Spring cleaning can be about far more than just creating a clearer, cleaning living environment – it can be a route to a clearer mindset and more organised lifestyle over all. The rewarding feeling of a fresh and cleaned home, along with satisfaction from cleaning itself, is a direct result of the neurological way in which our brain rewards us for being tidy and conscientious.

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CT Feature Here are a few ideas of how it might help:

hospitals or cafes. Not forgetting food items which many of us buy but never get around to using, why not donate them to your local foodbank? The opportunities are endless. As the saying goes ‘one man’s junk is another man’s treasure’ after all.

By decluttering, you may actually be de-stressing too. According to researchers at UCLA's Center of Everyday Lives and Families (CELF), there's a link between high cortisol (a stress hormone) in women who own homes with a "high density of household objects." So, theoretically by going minimalist, you may also be helping to minimise your stress levels too – amazing!

But what if the weathers nice? Surely you cannot be expected to stay indoors cleaning? Fear not! You can always venture outside and help with ‘Spring Clean Cymru’, between 22nd March and 23rd April. This campaign calls upon individuals to help improve the environment on their doorstep. It aims to inspire thousands of people to join forces to collect and safely dispose of litter from our streets, parks and beaches, recycling as much as possible. This is vitally important as not only does litter spoil the natural beauty of our environment, it also poses a threat to marine and wildlife. The RSPCA recorded more than 7,000 incidents of animals being injured as a result of litter last year alone! Log onto find out more: https://www.keepwalestidy.cymru/pages/category/springclean-cymru

Untidy environments can be unsafe environments. Having an untidy home is dangerous as it's fostering an environment for germs and pests. Think about it: if you can't see the surface of your kitchen counter, how can you wipe it clean? All those crumbs and curdling dishes are prime package holidays for flies and vermin and cluttered, dark, moist areas are breeding ground for bacterial spores. Further to this, clutter and mess can create slip/trip and fall hazards galore. Accumulated waste can waste time too. Perhaps you’re fed up of spending time searching for items whether it be your car keys, glasses, remote control or a working pen? By spending time organising your living space you may be saving yourself the stress of frustrating foraging and enabling yourself to regain those precious moments you lose on the hunt!

So how does someone start to spring clean? • Get the right tools for the job – make sure you’ve got a supply of cleaning products and cloths to help you on your way! It need not cost a fortune either as homemade natural products such as vinegar, bicarbonate of soda and lemon juice can all be just as effective as shop bought products. Old (clean) socks and clothing can be transformed into cloths if needs be too! • Record your reasons for reduction – by writing down (maybe even sharing on a blog/social media) your reasons why you are spring cleaning, it may help motivate you and put things into perspective when the ‘going gets tough’. • Set yourself SMART goals – Rome wasn’t built in a day and clutter doesn’t (usually) accumulate in a day! By setting yourself specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely goals you will have more chance of success. Check out http://www.positive-changes-coach.com/smartgoal-setting.html to find out more. • Involve others – whether it be flatmates, friends, family or professional cleaners, you don’t have to ‘go it alone. If you are elderly you may find the ‘Good Gym’ scheme can be of some help. • Take a word from the wise – Tidying Up with Marie Kondo is a new show of Japanese tidying guru Maire Kondo, which aims to help individuals declutter by finding joy in the possessions they have and have confidence to get rid of the chaos of clutter.

Clear space = clear mental state. A study from the Princeton University explains that the awareness and annoyance of existing clutter will wear down on your mental state, making you more likely to become frustrated so you might make decisions differently than your normally clear head might. So, in order to act in the optimal ways, you need to dump the junk and live in a clutter free chateaux. Less clutter means more space for you and others. How nice would it be to come home to somewhere neat, tidy and welcoming where you can kick back, relax and unwind? You may even be more inclined to invite others over without having to do a mad dash around before dinner dates arrive! It can help others – What better motivation for that much needed spring clear out than to give vital funds to a charity of your choice. By donating your items to charity shops/drop boxes or organisations you will be making a positive difference to others too. Alternatively, why not take unwanted items, toiletries or clothing to your local hospital, homeless shelters or care home to see if they can utilise them? Perhaps you could take surplus tools or DIY items to a repair café nearby? These cafes help fix items for free and educate others whilst doing it, they welcome donations of consumables to help them help others! Find your local one at www.repaircafewales.org. Waiting rooms could always benefit from a few magazines once you’ve read them, and book donations are often welcomed in

Ultimately the benefits of spring cleaning speak for themselves, but only you can decide whether to hear them or not. It may not be the most exciting thing you’ll do this year, but it may well be one of the most useful! Good luck and happy cleaning!

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Saturday 9th March

02920 763679 or email information@caerleoncardiff.co.uk

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“in the words of…” By Carl Marsh

March, the month which gives us all the first taste of Spring, daffodils are aplenty, and people have finally forgotten about Christmas! There are lots of events in March, notable ones to mention are the Blue Planet II tour, Busted, Dan Snow, Macbeth and Shakin' Stevens! Looking back into February, and if you recalled last month, I spoke with Peter Hook, well, I got to meet him backstage at Tramshed in Cardiff, a highlight for me as I was brought up listening to New Order and Joy Division. To see him play the bass guitar live was quite surreal considering how many times I had heard him play it while listening to a CD or record.

same night as the Dan Snow event above. I spoke to Matt Willis about how they got back together and the writing of this new album. The last interview is with Cardiff's very own music superstar Shakin' Stevens, Ely born and bred! Appearing at St David's Hall on Sunday 3rd March, he tells me he will be playing the hits, some new stuff and some tracks by other artists that you probably wouldn't expect him to sing. This will be a gig for those young and old.

Local Mentions Interviews February allowed me to sample the menus of two very different restaurants with our expert food, drink and venue reviewer, Brett Salway. The first one was R.P. Culley & Co at the Coal Exchange in Cardiff Bay. Here I chose the ‘Classic Scotch Egg’ to start, and I found it really enjoyable. The concealed egg was robust and tasty which is how it should be served. For my main, I chose the ‘Culley’s beef’ which is a seared beef fillet and was accompanied by an oxtail, foie gras and beef pie, truffle mash, rosti potato, spinach, parsnip purée and a rich jus. The venue itself is still being worked on but is very much open, and well worth a visit.

It has been really hectic this month with interviews, as I have been doing more than ever before, mostly for people that are not actually touring until the latter part of 2019 but, I needed to get them done. One I can tell you about was Alice Cooper. Yes. Really. Alice Cooper the US rock star. He is touring in October or November, but I couldn't allow that one to be delayed! Getting back to this months, I chatted with Anita Rani, who is hosting the Blue Planet II tour at the Motorpoint Arena on the 14th `March. BBC presenter Anita Rani is a highly-respected TV personality and has been one of the presenters of the BBC One series Countryfile, she regularly appears in and presents the BBC’s One Show. In 2015, she was also a contestant on Strictly Come Dancing.

(Brett’s reviews can be found here www.cardiff-times.co.uk/blog/) The second restaurant is Ciliegino, which is a delightful Italian restaurant in St David's 2 food hall, which is on the second floor. A bit out of place but don't be fooled, this is a little gem. Brett wrote that "The restaurant was spacious and inviting, it’s the use of vibrant colours and pale whites that really added a contemporary feel. I have decided to award this restaurant my first ever ‘Brett Salway Prestige Award’ as I feel the service, food, wine and surroundings could not be criticised in any way shape or form." I couldn't agree more, the food was incredible, fresh, tasty and non-bloating due to how they use certain ingredients.

Next was Dan Snow, who is probably more well-known as ‘The History Guy’, Dan will research and include historical facts relating to the specific area/town of each theatre on the tour, so that means many a fact about Cardiff and the surrounding areas. Dan will be appearing at the St David's Hall on the 26th March. One group that had a massive following before they went separate ways were Busted. They did sort-of reform but they did so without Charlie to create McBusted, when they merged with McFly for a while. Now, all three are back together once again. Playing at the Motorpoint Arena on the 26th March, which is the

(Brett’s review can be found here www.cardiff-times.co.uk/blog/)

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Carl: Do you feel more comfortable being on a podcast or on the radio, rather than being in front of the TV or in front of an audience? What do you prefer?

Anita Rani

Anita: No. I think they both come hand-in-hand, really. Over the years, they're just both part of being a broadcaster. Carl: You don't have any fears or anything like that anymore? Anita: Of course I do. I'm terrified, nothing is more terrifying than live TV, it is absolutely petrifying. Doing this tour is going to be, it's going to be scary. However, the adrenaline buzz and the feeling you get from when you do them is incomparable. I think it's a particular sort of person that can do that kind of job, for certain some sort of nutter! Carl: For anybody coming to see the Blue Planet tour, they are going to leave feeling overwhelmed and emotional, aren't they? Anita: I think they're going to have an experience they've never had before in their lives. Let's not forget Carl, this is really important, it's a family show. It's something that you can come, cross-generational, granny, parents, kids. It's an important show. This is more than just entertainment. Yes, of course, they're coming to be entertained. Yes, of course, they're coming to have a night out and have this phenomenal experience, but this is an important piece of telly telling them something about our planet. Yes, I think it's going to be an experience like no other.

Carl Marsh: How are you going to feel in front of a live orchestra then, Is it something that you're a fan of, the orchestra-type stuff? Anita: I'm a huge fan. Who doesn't love music, for starters? I am a big music fan, and I've been buying records for years. I have a huge collection, and it's really diverse, from everything from, God, I don't know, jazz to hip-hop to dance music to all sorts. I don't think there'll be a person in that room who won't be moved by the 80-piece live orchestra performing that soundtrack.

Carl: Yes, and also a fantastic opportunity for you to put your name out there even more. I know at the moment everybody sees you on the TV all the time, but potentially this is going to bring you to a new audience, which is what you want? Anita: Yes, it fits in with everything else I'm doing which is probably why I've been asked to do it. The Countryfile audience knows me really well. In the winter it gets 10 million viewers, which is just mad saying it out loud. When you're taken into peoples homes on a Sunday night, and they really do open their hearts out for you. It's a real privilege. Yes, it will be nice. I already feel comfortable knowing that the audience knows who I am. They'll know me from Countryfile. They'll remember me from Strictly. I'm already looking forward to meeting them face to face.

Carl: Hans Zimmer is a favourite composer of mine, and I know his music features in Blue Planet 2 but don't you also have Sigur Ros, the Icelandic group? Anita: Sigur Ros, yes, the Icelandic band. They're amazing. Didn't they do an album where they recorded it underwater? Carl: That's it. I think they're one of the best bands you can ever listen to. I believe they are just pure genius.

Carl: Because you seem to have a calming nature about you. People seem to warm to you quite quickly.

Anita: He speaks in a language that's made up. Carl: That's right. I know. [laughs] People don't realise. You're trying to sing along to it, and then you think to yourself, "What's he saying, is it Icelandic?" Actually, no, it's not. It's made up. [laughs]

Anita: Bless you, Carl. That's nice of you to say. Yes, I know. People who know me always say the same thing that the person you see on the telly is the person I am in real life which is a big compliment.

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Did you find it harder writing the songs for this new record than you did before with any of the others?

Shakin’ Stevens

Matt: I found this album quite tough. If I'm honest, this was the hardest record we've ever made, or I've ever made. It was quite a struggle. We've probably written 50 songs in this record, and we scrapped two albums worth before we decided which direction to take. While we had an album budget to make this from the record company, we spent that on demos. We then had to do some gigs to earn the money to make the record because we'd spent a long time messing around. It was really hard. It shouldn't have been. It should have been the most simple, most natural thing in the world but we made it really complicated and tried to do so many different things& Picture Credit - Graham Flack ( to read more - www.cardiff-times.co.uk/blog/ )

You are coming home to Cardiff, playing at the St David's Hall on March the 3rd, what can we expect?

Dan Snow I know you know our history better than most people, but when do you think that people started talking more, rather than always reverting to violence first?

Shakin' Stevens: Well, I'll be putting some more hits that I did the last time because of the title of the tour, Greatest Hits and more. There'll be other songs in there as well. There will be some songs from Echoes Of Our Times and also tracks that I haven't done or included in the sets for quite a while. Some of them, I haven't sung for a decade or more. I thought we'd look at them and put them in because it's a memory thing as well. So there is a good mix there& ( to read more - www.cardiff-times.co.uk/blog/ )

Busted - Matt Willis

Dan Snow: Well, I think it happened in different places and at different times. It goes all the way back to ancient Greece, and violence is a regular feature of the human condition. Violence benefits the very, very rich people and the very, very poor people. The very, very rich can steal the land and castles whilst the very, very poor can access social nobility and wealth through violence on the battlefield. I think that when you get a large group of people in the middle who have small houses, modest ambitions and they just want to live and develop their own little family-sized businesses or farms. Now that is& ( to read more - www.cardiff-times.co.uk/blog/ )

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CT Feature

beautifully presented book has the countries favourite dishes, alongside some that I have never heard of. One gripe though is that I wish all the food recipes were listed in some sort of order of places visited, rather than by food type. That aside, it is a fantastic offering from James Martin. I even interviewed James, and that will feature next month! (Five Stars)

Entertainment Previews & Reviews Educational/Interest The Spanish course is now finished, if you recall, it was the one that I was trialling called the Michel Thomas Method and the ‘Foundation Spanish’ first course. I found it quite easy to master what was being taught from the course. I say taught, and this is in the loosest form, as all you are doing is 'only' listening to Michel Thomas speak to two students of differing abilities. Am I tempted to learn more from this provider?! I am. I will. I just need to work out which language to try next! (Four Stars)

The second book is Spark Joy by Marie Kondo. There is a TV show on Netflix, which I mentioned above, and was why I purchased this book. It is all centred about tidying up your home, keeping what only sparks joy, and throwing or recycling those items that don't. There is a great emphasis on the correct way of the folding of your clothes, storing as much as possible vertically so that they are visible and easily accessible. Every clothing item gets a chance to be worn when it's not hidden behind other things. This book is illustrated in part too, which helped me immensely when I got a bit lost with some of the words used. This book has transformed my life. If you want a clean home, a clear mind with a happy outlook without stress, then this book could be the best purchase you will make this year. (Five Stars)

TV Dirty John. This is a Netflix show that caught my attention when I saw the trailer when I had one of those emails from Netflix highlighting 'coming soon' new shows. I think it took my wife 20 seconds of seeing the trailer with me to say 'that look's brilliant!" And she has never done that before. It is brilliant. As thriller's go, it's modern, has plenty of twists, and turns, and is actually a true story. Don't be fooled by the illicit title, this really is a short series of only eight episodes that will get you sucked into binge watch in a couple of sittings, as it did us. (Five Stars)

Theatre I got to see Benidorm Live at The New Theatre with Brett and dare I say it, I found it funnier than the TV show! I didn’t know what to expect as I watched the first series on the TV, then only dipped in every now-andagain with each subsequent series. And to think my father lives in Benidorm for four months every year, and I have never been to see him, so by watching this live show, it has ignited wanderlust for me to visit. It’s fun, it’s different (with singing and dancing in spurts), it’s so well written, and the cast is on top form. (Four and a Half Stars)

Literary There are two books that I have had the pleasure to review this month. One isn't really a book of words, albeit those that tell you how to cook. It is the new cookbook by James Martin. The other is a book that I purchased from Amazon, after starting to watch a TV series on Netflix (irony there) called Tidying Up With Marie Kondo. The first book is called James Martin's Great British Adventure. There is no need to name the author as it is obvious! Released around the same time as the start of the TV show of the same name, this large and heavy

Thank you all for reading, see you next month, and do feel free to contact me on Twitter @InTheWordsOf_

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Books To Look Out For In March In Knives We Trust by Geoff Brookes

Rhubarb Without Sugar by Pamela Cartlidge

Organ Express by Keith Wallace

Inspector Rumsey Bucke, a still-grieving widower, must find Daniel Guy who has tried and failed to murder his own wife. He tracks him steadily through the murky streets of Swansea’s poorest communities, with little help from a corrupt and incompetent police force. Two fatal stabbings, which may or may not be connected, put Bucke’s position under threat from a scheming superior. However, he finds the will and the support to change his life from an unlikely source, the wife of a prime murder suspect. But there are unknown figures lurking in the shadows and Bucke is drawn into the dangerous world of international politics, with assassins playing out a clandestine war on the streets of the town, ready to kill the innocent to protect themselves. As he desperately runs out of time to prevent another murder, Bucke has to find the answers which have eluded him.

Whilst Louisa and her husband Fred wait anxiously for news of the return of their respective brothers from World War Two, they try to get on with their own lives. Bomb ravaged Britain still has to cope with housing shortages as well as the continued food, petrol and clothing rationing. Despite living in cramped conditions with Louisa’s parents and sister, as well as their two young daughters, Louisa and Fred consider themselves amongst the lucky ones. Utilising her talents as an accomplished seamstress, Louisa attempts to make a career for herself with her sewing. Her talent for recycling and creating fashionable clothes wins her admiration and respect. When fabric rationing slackens and clothes factories mushroom in the early 1950’s, the dynamics of Louisa’s family also change. As a result of these changes Louisa has to face hard challenges in both her work life and with her health.

A Chinese transplant surgeon is running a widespread people smuggling operation throughout South East Asia, mainly for the purpose of supplying body parts to his ultra rich clients. The operation falters when the surgeon uses a hydrofoil belonging to Kate Savage in which to ship refugees from Vietnam to China. When Kate investigates anomalies in her recently acquired ferry company, a close colleague is murdered and she narrowly escapes being one of the surgeons donors. Kate's eventual rescue from the island of Hainan is brought about by a middle aged civil engineer and three elderly ex Ghurkha soldiers. These four rugged individuals, eventually cause the downfall of the surgeons corrupt regime.

James Martin’s Great British Adventure A celebration of Great British food, with 80 fabulous recipes. James is back with a major new TV show – and tie-in book – that takes him the length and breadth of Britain. Following on from his triumphant TV shows and books James Martin’s American Adventure and James Martin’s French Adventure, our food hero comes home and brings us what he does best in James Martin’s Great British Adventure. The book sees James travel from coast to coast, meets local producers and chefs along the way who are putting Great Britain firmly on the gastronomic map of the world. James hits the borders of North Wales to join up with amazing chef Stephen Terry, stopping off at the grand Pale Hall and cooking up a feast with local welsh lamb. He learns the art of gin-making at Forager’s Gin before heading to Pembrokeshire where he meets Wales’ answer to Willy Wonka, young chocolatier Liam Burgess, takes to the water with local forager Yun Hilder and cooks up incredible dishes along the way. It’s the culinary journey that’s right on your doorstep with exclusive photography from behind the scenes on James’s extraordinary food trip.

Book page - March 2019 page 1

National Curry Week’s Official Recipe Book, ‘From Bombay to Britain’ will be a welcome addition to any kitchen National Curry Week celebrated its 20th Anniversary in October 2018 and to honour the momentous occasion , a recipe book has been curated that showcases signature dishes from 50 of the UK’s finest Indian restaurant. National curry week’s aim is to raise as much money as possible for their official charity campaign partner, Curry for Change, who support essential work across Africa and Asia to help vulnerable rural families out of malnourishment and poverty. Therefore, they have committed to donating all proceeds from the book sales to the charity so that you enjoy recreating these recipes knowing that you’ve also contributed to a good cause.

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rhs reveals highlights for flower show cardiff 2019 • Popular Regeneration Gardens return championing reusable materials • Welsh national flower celebrated with 2019 Master Grower R. & A. Scamp Daffodils • NEW Blossoming Beds challenges groups to create dazzling displays

Continuing the theme of community, a brand new Blossoming Beds Competition will offer community groups the chance to go head to head in creating colourful pockets of spring colour to inspire visitors. The ever-popular Wheelbarrow Competition also returns inviting local schools to transform them into adventurous creations using the Discovery theme as inspiration.

The RHS Flower Show Cardiff supported by wealth manager Brewin Dolphin will return to the Welsh capital with a celebration of spring from 12 – 14 April. The show will champion health and wellbeing and celebrate Visit Wales’ Year of Discovery theme for 2019 as it explores some of the finest in Welsh horticulture. Teaming up with Perennial, designer Peter Donegan will create a small private garden offering a relaxing space to enjoy and entertain complete with an outdoor kitchen. The Perennial Garden demonstrates what homeowners can achieve with a small, urban garden as it celebrates the organisation’s 180th anniversary of helping people in horticulture.

British wildlife is also embraced with Into the Nest by The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales which features a design from a bird’s perspective as it explores a variety of games to help visitors identify some of Wales’ iconic bird species. RSPB Cymru will be back with snail-friendly Maenor Malwen, made up of shell-like curves and circles as families can discover UK land and water snail species hidden within.

Designer Anthea Guthrie returns with a Show Garden following her Silver Medal in 2016. Inspired by ‘Bedtime Stories for Rebel Girls’, this gothic and ghoulish garden for a 10-year-old girl features a skull-shaped hut set in the bottom of a family garden where she can crawl through to a space to bury herself in books.

Other features include Bridgend College who will recreate the legend of Caerphilly Castle’s Green Lady and a vegetable plot for families to discover how to get growing no matter what age with Pennard Plants. In addition, 12 nurseries in the Plant Village and 45 nurseries in the Floral Marquees will bring a bounty of colour and scents. In recognition of their achievements, R. & A. Scamp Quality Daffodils have been named as 2019’s Master Grower. The multi gold medal-winning daffodil specialist will create a show-stopping display featuring hundreds of varieties of daffodils and a woodland walk feature for a behind the scenes glimpse into their nursery life. Alchemy Ferns and Kitchen Garden Plants are amongst the newcomers to exhibit at the show.

Returning for its second year, the Regeneration Gardens category welcomes two recent garden design and landscape architecture graduates designing affordable spaces that use unexpected, everyday materials. Brent Purtell’s The Urban Gallery will recreate a small public park in the heart of a city, combining recycled industrial materials with bold artworks from local artists for an enclosed escape. Nature’s Take Over by Diego Carrillo highlights the beauty behind nature’s simplicity. The low-maintenance garden designed for an eco-friendly couple aims to attract wildlife to bring them closer to nature.

The popular Floristry Bench introduced in 2018 will also be back with a brand new Living Art Floristry Competition, as experts such as celebrity florist Jonathan Moseley creates floral masterpieces alongside a variety of workshops.

As a key show theme, features will highlight the benefits of gardening and outdoor spaces. The National Botanic Garden Wales’ Gardd Lles, meaning ‘Wellbeing Garden’ in Welsh, provides secluded seating areas for contemplation and mindfulness. Meanwhile, Grow Cardiff will also promote the benefits of community gardening with a vibrant display created by patients from the Grow Well project and local gardening group Billy’s Green Fingers.

For more information or to buy advance tickets for the RHS Flower Show Cardiff visit : www.rhs.org.uk/cardiff

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How to Spend Your Easter! BETTER LEISURE It’s an indulgent time for kids over Easter; inundated with copious amounts of chocolate and endless hours in front of screens. Better is here to help keep your kids active and entertained so parents, you can feel a little less guilty of their chocolate consumption! Across seven pools in the city, you can book your child onto our Intensive Swim Courses. These lessons are perfect for supporting your child progress through their waves in line with their swim lessons. It will boost their swimming confidence and ability and are suitable for beginners all the way to competent swimmers. What’s more, in every Better swimming pool in Cardiff, kids can enjoy up to 2 hours FREE swimming a day as part of the Free Swimming Initiative with Sport Cardiff. Plus, as part of the initiative, anyone over 60 can swim for free too, so if you’re having help from Grandparents this Easter whilst you go about your daily routine, be sure to check out our free swimming sessions. Alternatively we have a wide range of activities for kids under 16, including everything from junior gym, pool inflatables, football, gymnastics, dance, soft play, inflatables and much, much more. For more information visit www.better.org.uk/cardiff .

CEFN MABLY FARM PARK MOODY SOW FARM SHOP Cefn Mably Farm Park is an all-weather family farm and soft play in one, set in the rolling countryside between Cardiff & Newport. They offer a unique mixture of farm animals and soft play areas - the ideal place for action packed days out, birthday parties, schools and groups. The park is designed for families from toddlers to teens so it’s the perfect place to visit this Easter. While the children play, take your time in the café with lunch & a coffee. On your way out, don’t forget to try some fresh and local produce from the multiple award-winning Moody Sow farm shop - the scotch eggs alone are worth the trip there! They make their own pies, pasties and ready meals together with their own bacon, sausage & burgers - all award winning! So, try somewhere new for all the family this spring! Tel: 01633 680312 Began Road, Cardiff, CF3 6XL

TENKAICHI Tenkaichi has become one of the best restaurants in Cardiff, winning awards for its traditional Japanese Cuisine and outstanding Sushi & Sashimi. Tenkaichi motto, “Good Friends, Great Food”, is implemented within their restaurant by providing exceptional food in a relaxed environment that the whole family will enjoy. Tenkaichi is awaiting discovery by the public, and is worth the trip. They are open 7 days a week to adhere to your Japanese needs. Tenkaichi Sushi & Noodle Bar , 236 City Road, Cardiff, CF24 3JJ 029 2048 1888 www.tenkaichi.co.uk www.facebook.com/tenkaichicardiff/ Twitter @Tenkaichi236 Instagram: tenkaichicardiff

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THE CINNAMON TREE The Cinnamon Tree is one of the finest Indian restaurants one can find in Cardiff and the interiors of the restaurant exude the feeling of tradition and present their family history beautifully. With impeccable service and a broad, interesting and diverse menu, there is something to suit the taste of every person that walks in the door. Just the fragrance of their curries that are bursting with flavour makes you salivate. Each of their dishes showcase the deep rooted knowledge of authentic Indian cooking: the Maharaja Bhuna and Lamb Dhaka Achari are their most favourable dishes and are guaranteed to make you want to keep going back for more. It doesn't matter what flavour of food suit your palate, the Cinnamon Tree provides dishes that are mild, medium and hot. The only problem you’ll face is having to decide on one dish from a wide selection, but no matter what you choose, you cant go wrong. 173 King’s Road, Cardiff, CF11 9DE 029 2037 4433 Cinnamon House, Tonteg Road, Treforest CF37 5UA

01443 843 222

THE WINDING HOUSE MUSEUM Once a thriving coal mine, the Winding House is now a modern, family friendly museum exploring the history of life in the Valleys. The centrepiece is a unique Victorian winding engine complemented by interactive galleries, frequent family activities, relaxing coffee shop and quality gift shop. Engine Running – 11.45am – 27th April, Free See the unique Victorian winding engine in action. The fantastic engine volunteers will be on hand to chat about this mechanical wonder. Chinese Brush Painting – 11am – 26th April, Free Members of the ‘Art Bambw Gwyrdd’ group will be demonstrating how to paint in a style inspired by traditional Chinese techniques. Find out more about this style, try it for yourself and see a large collection of their artworks in the new gallery space. Easter Craft Club – 11am – 19th April , £2.50 per child Visit on Good Friday for a good time making Easter eggs, bunnies and cards. Call 01443 822666 to book. Winding House, Cross Street, New Tredegar, NP24 6EG

TECHNIQUEST It’s Air-Mazing at Techniquest this Easter! What different gases make up our amazing atmosphere? How can they be used to help us? What happens when we cool these gases? Find out the answers to these questions and more, in Techniquest’s family-friendly show. The air-mazing science demonstrations will blow you away! Plus, get hands-on with two floors of interactive exhibits and journey to the stars in Techniquest’s digital planetarium. Techniquest is open every day from Saturday 6th to Sunday 28th April, from 10am to 5pm. Techniquest, Stuart Street, Cardiff CF10 5BW 029 2047 5475

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going to the game? By Sara John

Edinburgh is a long way away from South Wales. Frequently the weather is colder, but, generally drier. They do things differently there. The journey is over four hundred miles. Most of those miles take you through a third country, England. They do things differently there too.

By the middle of the week there would be a lot of red about. It made any grey days look more cheerie. Red scarves. Red faces – from the chill wind coming up Leith Walk of course. Red embarrassment when a red scarved visitor would enquire of a gent dressed like someone out of a Sir Walter Scott story, where was the Castle? “Up there” would come the reply. In most parts of central Edinburgh you only have to look up and you see the Castle, it is very grand indeed. Mr. Rob Roy will then have to find out a little more, not a lot more like in Wales but just a little. “Are you Welsh? He will enquire. “Can you sing?”.

But, if you are going to the game, or, ticketless, you are going to watch the game in the company of the like minded, four hundred miles away from your own familiar home, then the plans, the journey, the anxiety and the sheer proud excitement of going to a Scotland v. Wales International game will stay with you for ever.

Such encounters often led to invites to sing at get-togethers in pubs, in clubs, in residents’ houses, on the streets. If you are Welsh and you can sing you are IN.

For first timers, you need to know that it is not like going to Twickers. Nothing at all like Twickers in any shape or form, in this world or the next. Or Paris. Or Dublin. Or Rome.

By Thursday and Friday much music could be heard all over Edinburgh. And what amazed me was that the locals shed many of their constraints and joined in. Celtic Cousins. It seemed to me that we Welsh were giving the residents ‘permission’ to enjoy the company of complete strangers, in their own city! A Brythonic Revival celebrating songs and words and stories from before the Anglo Saxon Invasions. And the odd drink.

I lived in Edinburgh for six years: a beautiful, cold, cultured, well educated city with a history that has its own history. The people were polite, but, to me, seemingly distant, absorbed with their own affairs, well versed in their own politics, histories, economics and in relationships with their European neighbours. One of the most striking differences was a complete lack of curiousity about anyone who was not born, or much more importantly, educated in Edinburgh. That is, any ‘outsider’. No one had any interest whatsoever in any ‘outsider’.

A few pointers to put newbies in the picture. Where is Murrayfield you may ask? The Ground is not central as in the city of Cardiff. It is about three miles on the main road, west, away from Edinburgh city centre. It is a little like going from Cardiff Castle to Ely Bridge. The accepted tradition is to walk there (the main road may well be closed to traffic anyway). You cannot get lost! You will get swept along. It is bliss to be alive and you are not even there yet!. Start off early from the ‘West End’ of Princess Street and enjoy talking to all the other like minded – Scots and Welsh alike – walkers. There will be singing. The Scots expect it. Not like that scene from Rourke's Drift but a slice of Bread of Heaven will not be wasted. The Welsh still want to win after all. The Scots need to know what they are up against.

The first winter I was resident there had me wondering how they would behave with the red river of wild and wonderful Welsh patriots who would be swarming all over the Castle, the streets, the squares, the shops and the pubs in the days leading up to ‘The Game’. Of course I was not really aware of the long and wonderful history of this fixture. During the week prior to the International fixture against Wales, EVERYTHING changed. Everything. My Edinburgh relatives and friends told me that the Welsh coming up for the game is an exceptional experience for local residents. When I ventured into the city centre, on the Monday before the match proudly wearing my red scarf there would be only a few other red scarf wearers that early on in the week. I knew they were genuine because, spotting me amongst the tweeds and the tartans they would risk saying, as a means of greeting, “Allright?” I soon learned that the expected response was, “Aye”. As the week progressed so did the number of red scarves until they dominated the city landscape.

There are plenty of stalls selling drinks, snacks, hot foods and so on in the outer keep as it were of the Stadium, once you arrive. It is time to go in. You check that you have your ticket for the 563 thousandth time. Emerging from darkness into daylight you realise you are a bit on the early side. Read your programme. Look up on to the roof of the west stand and you will see The Piper preparing to attempt to frighten the opposition with his skirling pipes, jolly thick ¾ socks and his sharp skean dhu tucked into the band of his right sock. Frightening us Welsh won’t work. We know that. It never does.

Scottish supporters would also be arriving, from the west, from the Borders, even from England and overseas. And London. Many from London. I am reminded of a school friend of my husband’s who returned from London and his post in the Admiralty for an International years ago. He was asked how he was getting on with his new English colleagues. He replied that he had not met any yet, all his colleagues were Scots.

After all that the Welsh have been through we are not frightened of anything. Well, except our “Mam” of course.

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CT Feature On my first visit to a Murrayfield International I had taken one of my husband’s large white handkerchiefs to help me and my hiraeth (homesickness) when it was time for the anthems. I thought to myself I will be okay once we have sung Hen wlad, it might even send the Scots scurrying back home.

deserving of an academic study about playing, not winning; participating, not losing. Finally, a totally true, slightly biblical parable. A sort of warning about human frailty. Some years back, when Doctor’s notes for “bad backs” were easier to come by, a group of young male colleagues of mine planned their first trip to The Game in Edinburgh. They arrived mid week. At once they went out to the nearest gift shop for presents for loved ones before they ran out of money.

I was wrong. Utterly wrong. The Welsh anthem was sung with great vigor, power and feeling as usual, but what came next knocked me out. Unlike football matches all the spectators were mixed up together. Welsh and Scots. Scots and Welsh. The band and pipers struck up the first few notes of Flower of Scotland and everyone, I mean, EVERYONE especially the Welsh lifted the roof. I could not believe the spectacular sound, there was no way anyone from the Land Of Song was going to let a great tune go unsung. I looked all around me at the Scots. They were trying to sing but most were crying. They, it seemed, presumed they had died and gone en masse to Heaven – where the Welsh were responsible for the music.

They saw the Castle from a distance, passed a bus marked Holyrood Palace, watched children boarding a bus to the Zoo, wondered where Leith was but did none of those things. They did go to the game and returned to the centre of Edinburgh to celebrate (another) Welsh victory. They crossed the bridge over the Waverly station in high spirits, clog dancing, singing and making a lot of joyful noises.

My recall of the game itself is a little misty. I find it difficult to keep up with the rules, which seem to me to change each week. When I think I might have got some sort of handle or even tongs on the offside rule the unexpected (to me) happens. The punishments also appear to vary considerably. I realise I am the only person shouting advice to the ref who has no intention of sending the player off. Maybe he is a relative?

A little further on they realised one of their party was missing. Too drunk and excited to be sensible they decided he would be “Okay” and would “Turn up”. That was Saturday evening. The following Monday the errant Welsh man was discovered in Temple Meads station in Bristol, lying on a bench, wearing his red scarf. He, himself, assumed he was dead and had been laid out in a Gothic Cathedral awaiting burial. In heaven.

Apres Ski or Apres the Game? No contest. Retrace your walk back into the city centre. If the Welsh won the Scots will want to drink with them. If the Scots won they will want to drink with you. You see, unlike rugby Internationals against other nations, with the Wales v Scotland or Scotland v Wales, it does not matter who wins. It is perhaps

What had actually happened was that he had decided to balance on and walk along the parapet of the bridge, arms out stretched, and lost his balance. He fell a very considerable distance through the glass roof of the station on to the top of a train waiting in the station below. Then he rolled off and came to rest at the feet of travellers. These people waiting on the platform, and seeing his red scarf, assumed rightly that he was a Welshman, picked the unconscious figure up and put him on the train for Bristol, thinking that at least it was roughly in the right direction. Waking up in Bristol he found he had sustained few injuries and was somewhat relieved to discover he was not really dead after all. Then, he related to me shortly afterwards, he realised he would still have to face his Mam.

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“And Another Thing…….”

By Vince Nolan

alpine sports of sorts motorway extension debacle. This from the same organisation who said that tolling the Second Severn Crossing had held back economic growth in South Wales for 22 years. There is nothing like consistency and this is nothing like it.

I must confess that neither the current Mrs Nolan nor I have ever been on the Piste (snow skiing), well, until the recent small smattering of snow we all experienced. Picture the icy scene. I had parked the car at her office on a light dusting of snow and was helping her to remove her knuckle-dusters and assorted weaponry from the boot when the car started to move of its own accord (not a Honda) and began to slide down the incline which is her car-park towards a convenient brick wall. Quick as a flush (I know), she employed her full 8 stones to good affect by hanging on to the open boot surround whilst two tons of German engineering headed South for the Winter with her in its wake. Gallant to the last, I paused briefly for dramatic effect (laughing too much), before leaping into action on my one good leg, prising the drivers’ door open and bringing the vehicle safely to a controlled stop. Of course I was instantly accused of not applying the electronic hand brake in the first place whilst the Leader of the Opposition claimed the credit for slowing the car down thus buying time for me to stop it. No mention of my life flashing before me, the car and wall being potentially smashed to bits. Just all in a mornings’ work for Team Nolan really.

Anyway, a motorway walks into a pub one day. He goes up to the bar and orders himself a drink. He sits down when in walks a strip of tarmac. The motorway sees the tarmac and starts to panic so he jumps over the bar and ducks down so it won't see him. The barman looks down at him and says, "What's the matter with you? Why are you hiding? You've got six lanes and two hard shoulders. Why are you frightened of a piece of tarmac? The motorway replies, "You don't know him like I do. He's a cycle-path." I read with great interest that the Japanese treat petty crime very harshly with first offenders usually jailed. However, Japanese repeat offenders over the age of 65 represent 20% of the total prison population there, outnumbering teenagers. Like many of our older citizens they cannot afford to live on their pensions but they are still paid them whilst they are doing conjee (Japanese for porridge). A two year stretch and they will have saved enough to live outside again for another few years when they commit a minor offence

CBI Wales has suggested there should be a toll road rather than a no road re the long-awaited M4

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CT Feature

again and go back in. Something of a Silver Tsunami. I have tried to persuade the Sainted Mother-in-Law to follow suit but she is having none of it (Stir crazy already). A prisoner in jail receives a letter from his wife: "Dear husband, I have decided to plant some lettuce in the back garden. When is the best time to plant them?" The prisoner, knowing that the prison guards read all mail, replies in a letter: "Dear wife, whatever you do, do not touch the back garden. That is where I hid all the money." A week or so later, he receives another letter from his wife. "Dear husband, you wouldn't believe what happened. Some men came with shovels to the house and dug up the back garden." The prisoner writes back: "Dear wife, now is the best time to plant the lettuce." You’ll like this stat. Of the 27 EU Member Countries (not including UK) we have managed to go to war with 17 of them (63%) during our glorious and not so glorious history and some of them many times. These include:

In Tesco, dining, (it’s one long business lunch after another). Grandad, Grandma and 20 year old Grandson on an adjacent table. They were discussing a mutual acquaintance who earned £80 per day. Grandad asked what that equated to for a 5 day week. Utter silence all round and three blank stares. I wanted to shout the answer out but Grandson then had a brainwave (a first and probably a last) and produced his phone calculator app. Let joy be unconfined I thought. There followed much head scratching and a blur of data inputting and on the third attempt out popped the right answer. Unfortunately this is a true story and I was amazed how they could have gone through life without basic numeracy.

France, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Ireland, Cyprus, Italy, Sweden, Netherlands, Poland, Denmark, Bulgaria, Austria, Hungary, Croatia, Romania and Finland. Now we have managed to turn the remaining 10 against us as well. Quite an act of diplomacy wouldn’t you say? Lady: “I’m leaving, I’m walking away. It’s not EU, it’s me.” Bloke: “Please don’t. I can’t live if living is without EU.”

Talking of numeracy, a talking sheepdog gets all the sheep in the pen for his farmer. He comes back and says ‘All 40 accounted for.’ Farmer says, “I’ve only got 36!’” Sheepdog replies, “I know, but I rounded them up.”

Finally, in unrelated matters, I was watching a TV ad: “Lindt, Master Chocolatier since 1845.” I was not impressed since it was only 19.00 at the time. Konichiwa and Sayonara my Chums

The Royal Mint will be minting a new 50 pence piece once Brexit is over. Of course post-Brexit, we could go back to the old imperial measurements just to fool our former EU chums. Now EU chaps would say “Give them 2.45cm and they will take 1.609kms.” Whilst the imperial fans will know that that the number of feet in a yard is directly proportionate to the number of people in the yard.

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£16



 

   

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Puzzle Mania! Crossword 1

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Across 1. Having a six sided shape (5), 4. Finger drum (5), 7. Photo book (5), 10. Post by plane (7), 11. Limit of one’s experience (7), 12. Draw behind (3), 14. Daring (8), 16. Be uncertain (8), 18. Eraser (6), 20. Through (3), 21. Breed of dog (6), 23. Wild parts of Australia (7), 24. Pasta (7), 27. Feel hatred (6), 29. Unreturned serve (2), 30. Invent (6), 32. Not by sea (8), 33. Impartiality (8), 35. Promotional sports (3), 37. Shammy (7), 40. Carry into effect (7), 42. Smooth, glossy (5), 43. Select group (5), 44. Court Hearing (5) Down 1. Seed husk (5), 2. Prickly seed case (3), 3. Foolish person (7), 4. Unit of noise intensity (3), 5. Jules Verne’s captain (4), 6. Squeal of surprise (3), 7. SAS is one (7), 8. Charles Dickens pen name (3), 9. Meat chopped finely (5), 12. National park in Kenya (5), 13. Grain crop (5), 15. Judge a two party dispute (9), 17. Sanction (9), 18. Bluebeard (5), 19. Pleated lace frill (5), 21. Piece of broken pottery (5), 22. Elevate, lift (5), 25. Ex-racing driver, Niki ; (5), 26. Coral barriers (5), 28. Mound (7), 31. Serious (7), 32. Roman god of the dead (5), 34. Hard exterior of an egg (5), 36. ; Moore, actress (4), 38. Used to chop wood (3), 39. Ship’s pronoun (3), 40. Hole of a needle (3), 41. Canton in Switzerland (3)

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WORD WHEEL

H E

H E

G

O

E.g. HOG

S

G D

Including the middle letter, how many words of 3 letters or more can you make? 20 = Good 25 = Excellent 30 = Outstanding

Sudoku Easy

Hard

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Friday, 22 February 2019 11:17 Magenta Yellow Black Cyan


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029 2065 1939 07977 136512 59 59

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Friday, 22 February 2019 11:22 Magenta Yellow Black Cyan


how green was (and now is again) my valley By Michael James

enjoy a trip to the 'pictures'. Sundays of course were kept as, 'The Lord's day of rest', where most attended one of the local Chapels, often three times in the day and woe betide those children who wanted to go out to play in the streets of terraced houses built by the mine owners for their workers. The life was hard but also often very enjoyable for the children of the Rhondda, like me; so please allow me to reminisce about my childhood.

Recently the Park and Dare Theatre in Treorchy showed the film, 'How Green Was My Valley', based on Richard Llewellyn's 1939 book of the same name. The book was an instant success and quickly became a film in 1941 which was nominated for twelve Oscars and won the 'Best' categories for Film, Director, Supporting Actor, Cinematography and Art Direction. It depicted life in the heavily mined Rhondda Valleys and a fictional mining community based on Gilfach Goch, and an older man's memories of his childhood spend in his close knit village, dominated by the local mine and the sharply contrasting blessing of having a job and the tragedies that came from working 'down the pit'. The title of the book and film comes from Llewellyn’s reflection on how green the Rhondda Valleys were before mining took over and the rivers became black with coal dust and the mountains and hills covered with black spoil from the mines. Nearly all the males in each family worked at the mine, either at the coal face itself or on the surface doing the variety of necessary associated jobs. While the men worked long, hard hours, so did their wives, the backbone of the individual families, who looked after the home, bore the children and made ends meet on the usually low wages that their husbands, fathers and sons brought home at the end of a long six day week. Often Saturday afternoons were free to spend time together, perhaps to go visiting family, play or watch sport and, if there was any money left,

Michael James - March 2019 page 1

Growing up in the War Years 1940 –1946, apart from those families whose men folk had gallantly volunteered to join the Services (although many of the miners were in 'reserved occupation', whose work was considered to be vital to the war effort) and the factual difficulties of food rationing, we children were, more or less, spared the horrors of the War. We played at it, with our home-made wooden guns, for hours in the lanes, or gullies as we called them, up in and around the local pit on Saturdays and in the lighter evenings. I lost count of how many of the enemy I killed before supper! Then of course there were our mountains. Soaring up from the narrow valley floor to the height of Everest (or so it appeared), they were our playground during the long, hot summer days. We would leave after breakfast with our haversacks filled with jam sandwiches and old Corona pop bottles with the flip open china stoppers, filled with ice cold water, which still tasted wonderful some hours later despite being warm, before arriving home promptly for our afternoon tea. I have recently returned from a skiing holiday, which my grandchildren loved, but I am willing to bet that it couldn't compare with sliding down the mountain sitting on pieces of cardboard or old lino, or better still on home made sledges made out of off cuts of wood which we bought for pennies from the local undertakers. We played soccer, emulating our favourite players and dreamt of scoring the winning goal at Wembley in the FA Cup Final or better still, against England! Our pitches were the streets (devoid of cars in those days), the back gullies or any flat area of grass (more often or not coal, where we gained our 'blue scars'), with the goals marked out with our coats for posts. Our footballs were often pigs bladders which we obtained from the local abattoir and filled with old papers or rags. Despite being kicked around by our

Monday, 25 February 2019 22:38 Magenta Yellow Black Cyan


CT Feature

weekday boots (we kept our best for Sundays), which often had steel toe caps, these makeshift footballs often lasted for a week before we could get another, and then we were off again. My little village was one of a few soccer areas so I didn't discover and play rugby until I went to the Grammar School. During the summer we switched to cricket and or tennis, played with the same soft balls against the plain cement rendered walls of the end of terrace houses, much to the annoyance of the residents inside the house. Although there were open air swimming pools in Treherbert and Llwynypia, this meant spending our pocket money on entrance fees and often buses, so instead we learned to swim in the mountain streams which we dammed with stones and turf to make deep pools. Those most daring among us, often climbed over the tall fences surrounding the pit reservoirs to swim in the deep, very cold water, or ventured into the Rhondda River, which was coloured jet black as it carried the waste from the coal washeries. Modern day health and safety officers, and parents, would not be best pleased at our antics. Yes, in the words of the old song, 'Those were the days my friends', and I am not looking back on them with rose tinted glasses. I really, really enjoyed them and I have many happy memories of my Rhondda Fawr Valley, despite the mining scars it bore from the employment it gave to thousands of people working to produce the best steam coal in the world, which was the fuel that sparked the industrial era. The young lad in the book/film, in later life reflected on how his once beautiful, green valley was transformed into a bleak, dark place of the mining community. Dark (so called) despite the hard working, honest, warm, loving, generous, musical, Chapel going people it produced. While I now remember how it was

Michael James - March 2019 page 2

and reflect on what is today, it is the reverse of what he saw before the discovery of coal. 'King Coal', gave the Rhondda Valleys (and Cardiff and Barry), its industrial wealth and the growth of its flourishing, vibrant communities but at the cost of losing its natural beauty. Today, despite the loss of large scale employment opportunities which force many to seek jobs elsewhere, they are prepared to undertake long daily commutes to return to their modernised, comfortable terraces houses to enjoy the friendly communities they call home. Although my wife and I came to work in Cardiff in 1956 and have happily lived here since 1976, we still refer to ' going home' on weekends to visit many of our families still living in the Rhondda Fawr. The (My) Rhondda Valleys are once again green and beautiful. The narrow terraces of brightly coloured houses, now full of cars, limit the playground of the children, but has so much more to offer in the way of modern leisure facilities (except the sadly missed recently closed, open air swimming pools). Since the closure of all the mines, the Rhondda River has slowly, miraculously one might say, washed away the dirty coal waste from its bed where it once had settled and the water is now crystal clear and pure enough for fish (but perhaps not people) to swim once again. The mountains, beautiful in the colours of our changing seasons, still rise majestically up to the sky and although, not perhaps the playgrounds of today's children, have become a magnet for walkers and climbers who can enjoy the peaceful, clean air, and beauty of their summits. Thank you for coming back with me to a time long gone and sharing my memories with you. If I were to right a book now, its title would surely have to be, 'How Green Is My Valley Again'.

Monday, 25 February 2019 22:39 Magenta Yellow Black Cyan


£12

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For a FREE quotation please contact Peter on:

Telephone: 029 2076 2273 Mobile: 07890 018950 Email: peter@thornhilldecorators.co.uk Portfolio and testimonials available to view on our new website www.thornhilldecorators.co.uk

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Ciliegino Italian Restaurant Review By Brett Salway This sensational Italian restaurant set in the St David’s 2 food quarter really blew us away! Carl and I were invited down to try “The best pizza and pasta in town”. With so many Italian restaurants in Cardiff, I was of course sceptical but eager to indulge and make my own conclusions. We arrived and were promptly greeted by the front of house with a warming smile and engaging attitude, I felt like we had walked into a friends home as opposed to just another Italian restaurant. The marketing manager Liam Purnell and head chef/owner Tonino seated us and made us feel incredibly welcome. Tonino explained that their vision was to provide authentic Italian cuisine to the Welsh people. This is the first Ciliegino in the UK, they also have 4 restaurants in Italy.

The restaurant was spacious and inviting, it’s use of vibrant colours and pale whites really added a contemporary feel. I have decided to award this restaurant my first ever ‘Brett Salway Prestige Award’ as I feel the service, food, wine and surroundings could not be criticised in any way shape or form. I felt like I had visited a truly authentic Italian restaurant in the heart of Sicily. I would without any hesitation recommend this restaurant to anybody that appreciates good Italian food and wants excellent value for money. They also have a superb Halal menu to cater for all appetites.

I found his passion and flare for Italian food and wine to be fascinating. Tonino is from the Sicily region of Italy and has a strong passion to offer some of the finest food and wine from his home town. Restauranteur Tonino opened his first restaurant in 1987, so his knowledge and experience was exceptional.

Facebook- https://m.facebook.com/Ciliegino-pizza-pasta-e -186793321516477/ Twitter- https://mobile.twitter.com/cilieginorp Instagram- https://www.instagram.com/cilieginoristopizza/

Below are links to their social media pages along with their address. MOLTO BENE!!!

Address- St David’s 2 shopping centre, 6 grand arcade, Cardiff, CF10 2ER

The menu options were outstanding and offered some really inspiring dishes. We opted for the traditional spaghetti Bolognese and their Ciliegino special pizza. The pasta was incredibly light and silky and the Bolognese was expertly cooked and tasted sublime. The Ciliegino pizza was really appetising, it had Parma ham, buffalo mozzarella and cherry tomatoes. It’s unique taste was because the restaurant uses a lava stone oven to cook their pizzas, which gave it its exquisite taste. The buffalo mozzarella and Parma ham are labelled as ‘PDO’ which refers to the products originating in a specific region, whose quality is exclusive to that environment - the region being Sicily in this instance. Toninos knowledge was impeccable and he really excited me with what he had to offer. We were recommended to have red wine with the Bolognese which was of Sicilian origin and called ‘NERO D’AVOLA’. It was a beautiful Italian wine with intense aromas of black berry fruits and juicy dark fruit flavours. It paired perfectly with the meal. If wine is not your thing then fear not as they have a wide variety of spirits, beers and soft drinks available. I must mention their Peroni Gran Reserva, which was superior and has won numerous beer awards.

Brett Salway Review - March 2019 page 1

Tuesday, 26 February 2019 10:44 Magenta Yellow Black Cyan


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Cardiff Times • www.cardiff-times.co.uk

MARCH 2019 - PART 2 page 65

Friday, 22 February 2019 11:29 Magenta Yellow Black Cyan


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Cardiff Times • www.cardiff-times.co.uk

MARCH 2019 - PART 2 page 66

Friday, 22 February 2019 13:13 Magenta Yellow Black Cyan


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MARCH 2019 - PART 2 page 67

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Friday, 22 February 2019 11:31 Magenta Yellow Black Cyan


sala’s flight - destination, tragedy By Craig Muncey City had got the man and all fans hoped that for a club that was struggling to score goals, that Sala, who had scored 12 goals in 19 games in Ligue 1 already this season, was the answer to their prayers. As it turned out, those prayers would be needed for far more vital reasons. After signing for Cardiff City, Sala had returned to Nantes to say goodbye to his teammates, staff and fans, how little did we know those goodbyes were going to be so ultimate to everyone. The picture put on social media outlet, Instagram, of Sala with his exteammates with him dressed in a black hoodie with the words on the front of his hoodie "Be Cool Be Nice" is one you now look at with real sorrow. You can see in the eyes of the players how much they liked Sala and were happy for him that he had got his dream move. There has been other poignant photos, such as one of his loyal dog, Nala, sat looking out over the horizon, wondering when his owner would return. All very sad.

Picture Credit – skysports.com Emiliano Sala; a player pursued by Cardiff City for many weeks until finally securing his transfer from Nantes. The striker was coming to Wales to pursue a dream - to play in one of the top leagues in the world to show his talents and to aid Cardiff City in their pursuit of remaining in the Premier League. What transpired has broken the hearts of so many people, but more than anyone the families of the two people who lost their lives that fateful day in the English Channel. I will personally recall in my mind for a very long time, how I first thought something was amiss. I was watching Sky News on the morning of the 22nd January when news broke that a plane was reported missing that had taken off from Nantes in France and had gone off the radar somewhere around the Channel Islands the night before, and there had been no communication since. Its planned destination was Cardiff and that an investigation was underway. I recall thinking that was it a coincidence that a footballer I knew had played at Nantes and had just signed for Cardiff City could be involved in this incident? My initial thought was surely not; this could not happen to a prized footballer who had just got his dream transfer for a substantial transfer fee, such a valued possession for all concerned, it could not be him could it?

Picture Credit – metro.co.uk After leaving his ex-teammates, Sala had boarded a plane which reportedly was retained by himself, and the plan was to arrive in Cardiff on the 21st January and for him then to go to training with his new team mates the following day in preparation for making his debut against Arsenal early the next week. While aboard the plane, Sala was contacting friends voicing his concerns over the state of the aircraft and his fear of the journey. A voicemail exists of him stating he was scared and that people may have to come and search for him if they hadn't heard again from him. Pretty chilling and appalling to hear, just imagining how he and the pilot must have felt at that time and for the rest of that fateful journey if indeed malfunctions were occurring.

Just a short time after the news broke, it was confirmed that the persons aboard the plane were indeed the footballer Cardiff City had just signed, Emiliano Sala, and the pilot, David Ibbotson, and that a search was well under way. I and many others could not believe what we were hearing. Sala only three days previous, had been in Cardiff for his medical and to sign his three-and-a-half-year contract with the Bluebirds for a reported record transfer of £15 million pounds. The signing had been talked about for weeks; it seemed the deal was almost complete only to hear from various news outlets that the player or the club, Nantes, had decided against the transfer. Finally however, Cardiff

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CT Feature

After the plane was reported missing, the initial attempts to find the aircraft had to be abandoned due to the poor weather, but were restarted the following day. After three days of searching with no success, the rescue attempts were abandoned with no sight of the plane or the passengers. During this period, the torrent of emotion from the general public was vast. Both Nantes fans and Cardiff City fans had memorials in their respective cities just wanting to show their appreciation for Sala and to pay their respects to his and the pilot’s family. The families of the two missing, paid (with the support of an online appeal), for a private investigation and rescue to take place as there were so many questions unanswered for them. Only hours later the investigation team announced that the plane had been found in the English Channel around Alderney, Guernsey. News later broke that inside the aircraft was indeed a body, which after being recovered from the wreckage and transferred to the coroners, was confirmed to be that of Emiliano Sala.

The whole tragic story is encircled by ‘what ifs’. Sala, after he had the medical at Cardiff City, was asked to stay for a few days in the City and to take in a Premier League game with his new team taking on Newcastle. However, Sala decided to return to France to say his farewells and to organise his personal belongings for his new life in Wales. If he had remained and not travelled back when he did, and thus the flight in poor conditions, the outcome could have been so different. Also, not yet confirmed, but there have been reports stating that the aircraft attempted to take off three times before it took flight, if this is true, what issues was the plane having before it had even left the ground? If a plane has to abort taking off due to some type of malfunction, should there be a process in place that full checks are carried out yet again in this scenario? It is also reported that just before signing with Cardiff City, Sala had turned down a more lucrative deal both for Nantes and to play in China, such was his longing to play in the Premier League. If he did not make that decision, then he would not have been on the plane travelling to Cardiff that disastrous day. So many ‘what ifs’ which just exacerbate this heart-rending story.

Even before the identity of the body was confirmed, it was made public that Nantes were seeking legal action against Cardiff City as they have as yet not received the first payment from the transfer fee which is believed to be an initial payment of over £5 million of the £15 million owed. This is such a shame that with this ongoing Tragedy, that it was felt this had to be made public, plus Nantes felt the necessity to proceed with this method of looking to take legal action. Two people are missing, one body found, and one still missing, destination unknown, please think of their respective families and friends, do these actions need to be taken now? All seems clinical and emotionless is my perspective on the situation. The last thing needed is a dispute ongoing around money whilst families are grieving and burying their loved ones or still searching for a body. Finances seem irrelevant at this juncture.

Picture Credit – skysports.com

Emiliano Sala was just 28 years of age; he was chasing his dream. The Argentinian had moved to Portugal and then to France to play football, and his next destination was Wales, to help Cardiff City and their fight to remain in the Premier League by scoring the goals to keep them up. Will they stay up? Who knows? Would Sala have been a big success for Cardiff City and a big success in the Premier League? This we will never know, and that is a massive shame for all, but all of that is overwhelmed by the biggest catastrophe of all; the loss of his life and the pilot, David Ibbotson, to their friends and family. Their tragic stories will not be forgotten for a very, very long time. RIP Emiliano and David.

Picture credit – edition.cnn.com

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Article - Craig Muncey - March 201... page 2

Sunday, 24 February 2019 23:10 Magenta Yellow Black Cyan


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Cardiff Times • www.cardiff-times.co.uk

MARCH 2019 - PART 2 page 71

Monday, 25 February 2019 20:31 Magenta Yellow Black Cyan


THE SWEET SMELL OF WELSHCAKES By Sara John

blacksmith would have made as, shall we say, a private ‘side-line’. She cooked on a modern gas cooker offering a steady regulated heat source. Her recipe was not written down. She measured her ingredients by using readily available utensils, cups, jugs, tablespoons and so on. When I was too small to see onto the table top, I had a footstool with a wicker woven top to stand on, which would be placed near her so I could watch and learn.

A food that is never refused. You can never eat just one. You must never prefer another woman’s to those of your own mother or, in later life, to those of your partner. This foodstuff has been sent to exiles around the world and discovered by peoples of many nations. They will last a week or more - if you do not eat them that is. They survive loose in your school satchel, briefcase or pocket. They are mouth shaped and do not disintegrate easily. They save lives on mountains or at football matches. They can be used to lure mountain sheep to have their photograph taken for the amusement of people, from away, who have not made the acquaintance of Welsh sheep.

Nowadays I make Welshcakes on a lightweight, non stick ‘griddle’ that does not weigh three hundredweight like the traditional cast iron and does not take half an hour to heat up evenly, on my modern electric cooker. I have the recipe written down and I weigh and measure everything. Making Welshcakes is a truly therapeutic process. You have to ‘be there’, still and calm. It is best not to answer the telephone and to avoid having anyone under your feet! Here is a tried and tested recipe which reaches back to the 1830’s to my knowledge. If you have not made Welshcakes before try it for yourself. I was quite grown up and living in Cardiff before I realised that Welshcakes were also sold in bakers shops, I had assumed they were only made by people’s mothers and grand-mamas. My husband claims that coming into the house greeted by the smell of Welshcakes cooking is “aphrodisian”.

I can only be writing about Welshcakes. Welshcakes are the traditional flat, small, round cakes, neither truly sweet nor savoury that are made by hand on a flat, hot bakestone over a constant source of heat. Everyone has their family recipe and their own variations in method.

WELSHCAKES Ingredients required (makes plenty)

My Mam-gu (grandmother), born 1875 in Mynachogddu, Pembrokeshire, whom I can just remember, cooked in a kitchen with a scrubbed-towhiteness table and baked her Welshcakes on a cast iron bakestone made by a local blacksmith, on an open fire, on a black leaded range in a kitchen as hot as a furnace. Her recipe was never written down, only passed down. Ingredients were measured ‘in the hand’. Cooking was by feel and texture: trial and error:

1 lb of plain flour (I use McDougals). 1 teaspoon (heaped) of baking powder. 10oz of good quality butter (I prefer Lurpak). 6oz of sugar. Pinch of salt (don’t ask what difference does it make?). 6oz of currants or sultanas (I use sultanas as they are softer and juicier). 1 teaspoonful (heaped) of cinnamon (for me, essential! almost the ‘secret of success’). I egg (large is good). 2 tablespoons of milk (three if you only have a smallish egg).

My mother, in the 1950’s, cooked her Welshcakes on a cast iron bakestone which the local colliery

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Sunday, 24 February 2019 23:19 Magenta Yellow Black Cyan


CT Feature

Equipment needed

6. Heat the bakestone or griddle on the top of your cooker on the largest ring at the highest setting. After a few minutes place your hand over the centre of the bakestone about three inches above it BUT DO NOT TOUCH IT!! When it feels very warm to hot turn the regulo down to maintain the heat. (My cooker rings have markings from one to six and I usually turn it down to four).

A clean flat surface (worktop, piece of slate or marble, or large chopping board). A big mixing bowl. Kitchen scales. A teaspoon, a tablespoon, a fork and a palette knife (or fish-slice or cake-slice). A medium round cookie cutter (about two and a half inch diameter) A glass or cup would also do. A small bowl. A bakestone or a griddle. I am warning you now that a frying pan will not work. A rolling pin (a wine bottle might do).

7. Meantime, split the dough into thirds and roll out one portion at a time on a well floured surface. Use the cookie cutter to cut out as many cakes as possible, then gather up and re-roll the dough, cut out more and so on until all the dough is used up.

Method

8. By now your bakestone should be ready. Carefully lay a test cake in the centre with the help of the palette knife, it should make a gentle ‘sizzle’ sound. If it does not ‘sizzle’ turn up the heat and try a minute or two later. The smell of burning indicates the opposite! Cook for a few minutes on each side, trying to achieve the traditional ‘sandy’ texture.

1. With freshly washed but cool hands mix together the flour with the baking powder and the salt. (A heaped teaspoonful of baking powder and plain flour is much better than self-raising flour). 2. Rub in the butter, by cupping your hands about six inches apart and passing the mixture over your fingers but under your thumbs. Do this until it feels like fine breadcrumbs. (Leave the weighed butter in a warm place beforehand for half an hour so it softens naturally).

9. Lift off the cooked cakes and let them cool, replacing them with the uncooked ones until you have cooked them all. Sprinkle with sugar while they are still hot. 10. Serve with good quality tea and enjoy. They can also be spread with butter, jam or honey and should be stored in an air-tight container.

3. Add the sugar, cinnamon and sultanas, mix all these dry ingredients together evenly. (You can soak the sultanas or raisins in warm water to ‘fatten’ and ‘soften’ them if you wish and do not be stingy with the cinnamon).

For a variation on the above ‘Mam-Gu’ recipe you can add a handful of dessicated cocount to the dry ingredients at stage 3 above.

4. Mix the egg and milk together with a fork separately in the small bowl. (Use no battery or electric mixing device, just do it gently by hand).

I also had some considerable success when I was living in Edinburgh, where we made very good friends with neighbours who were from Iraq. Awatif and I made Iraqi –Welshcakes - frequently! Substitute chopped dates for the sultanas or raisins and add plenty of powdered green cardamon instead of cinnamon. Top with a dollop of cream and a drizzle of clear honey.

(Be patient, this part is very important). 5. Add the liquid just mixed to the dry ingredients stirring initially with a fork, then with your hands. (This is the only bit that needs a little practice). Gather the dough into your hands and knead gently to achieve an overall consistency of modelling clay. This will need a few minutes to get right. If your mixture is too wet to stick to itself add a good sprinkle of flour. If your mixture is too dry and crumbly add a tiny amount of milk. (Leave this dough for ten to fifteen minutes, I cannot explain why!).

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Sunday, 24 February 2019 23:19 Magenta Yellow Black Cyan


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