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Politics: Contract approved for Virgin to run NHS services P23 >>

gair rhydd

Taf Od: Cofio drwy ddefnyddio cerdd Cymraeg P32 >> gair rhydd | freeword Cardiff ’s student weekly Issue 1087 Monday 21st November 2016 Two more years of overcrowding on Arriva Trains Wales


Survey reveals need for greater advertisement of SU safety schemes EXCLUSIVE Gabriella Mansell


year on from the sexual assaults that took place in September 2015, Gair Rhydd investigate students’ perceptions of safety in Cathays and the wider Cardiff area. We sought to determine if students’ opinions have changed since these attacks and whether the student body believe that the Students’ Union’s schemes have helped to improve safety concerns. Following the survey undertaken by Gair Rhydd, the results were found to be mainly positive and any negativity was fairly constructive, mainly concerning how the Union could help students and improve current initiatives. Students were asked to rank their general feeling of safety following the attacks last year. 47% of student re-

spondents said that after the attacks their perception of safety was altered in a negative way. A further 8.3% said that their perception towards safety was altered in a strong negative way. Although this means that the majority of respondents felt less safe after the attacks, it also suggests people will hopefully be more aware of their personal safety in Cardiff at night. We asked students to state which safety schemes run by the Students’ Union (in conjunction with Cardiff Council and South Wales Police) that they knew of. 84% of students were aware of the Safe Taxi Scheme. However, only 32.7% of students were aware of increased security and police patrols. And only a further 36% were aware of the Student Safety Bus, which is one of the main initiatives run by South Wales Police. When questioned further about the lack of knowledge regarding safety schemes available, many students

voiced their concerns for increasing awareness. One student said: “I feel that the university has not adequately advertised the student safety bus scheme, which in my opinion would be something that most students would take advantage of ”. Another student added: “The Union should advertise the schemes more, for example, posters around the student union and the university. I had not heard of the Safety Bus, Safe Walk Home scheme and I think the Safe Taxi Home scheme needs further clarification”. An additional student commented: “Advertise the schemes more, they all sound like good ideas but I’ve barely heard or seen any of them advertised around campus”. The schemes that are being implemented by the Students’ Union to increase student safety are clearly some really useful and well thought out ini-

tiatives. However, it is widely agreed that they need promoting further if they are to meet their potential. Students where also questioned about if the schemes did in fact, make them feel safer. 43% of respondents agreed that they did feel safer with the Union’s schemes in place. Finally, the last question students were asked were if they thought the Union should be doing more to help. The response was generally positive with over 50%of respondents saying that the Union did not need to do anything additionally. Despite a large percentage of students not being aware of the full range of safety schemes available, the Student Union have several different initiatives.

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ommuters in Wales hae been told to expect two more years of problems with key Arriva Trains services. Transport expert Professor Stuart Cole of the University of South Wales has said that “there isn’t an easy answer” to the lack of trains that has resulted in long delays and crowded journeys for commuters. Professor Cole has advised that the only solution to current problems is to assign more trains to transport routes. However, there are only three companies in the UK that provide the sort of trains needed by Arriva, which has led to the current shortage. Professor Cole has cited the fact that there was “no aditional stock”, as well as the trains already being 30 years old when Arriva Trains took over in 2003, plus the spike in demand in 2006, as being the main causes of current issues to services.

Jenny Rathbone AM urge Cardiff Univerity to rethink


elsh Assembly Member Jenny Rathbone has called upon Cardiff University to rethink the impending closure of the The Sir Geraint Evans Wales Heart Research Institute (WHRI), during a debate in the Senedd last week. The WHRI, donated by the Welsh public in 1999 specifically for heart research, is set to be closed due to a restructuring of the Medical School at Cardiff University. Jenny Rathbone AM said: “Whilst I recognize that Cardiff University must be free to choose which areas of research they should concentrate on, why when cardiovascular disease remains one of the leading causes of death in Wales, can we allow Cardiff University to withdraw this critical support. They need to rethink this.” Hon President of the Welsh Cardiovascular Society, John Goodfellow, referred to a “culture of fear” among staff at the Medical School, and said: “it is very difficult to get senior academic staff to speak out publically because of what they perceive to be a threat to their jobs.”

2 EDITORIAL Gair Rhydd Coordinator Elaine Morgan Editor Maria Mellor Deputy Editors Toby Holloway Emily Giblett News Toby Holloway Gabriella Mansell Harry Webster Comment Helena Hanson Caragh Medlicott Sam Saunders Columnist Helena Hanson Advice George Watkins Anwen Williams Politics Adam George Ellise Nicholls Science Tanya Harrington Kat Pooprasert Societies Aletheia Nutt Tom Morris Taf-Od Osian Wyn Morgan Liam Ketcher Sport James Lloyd Mark Wyatt Rich Jones Shaun Davey Digital Media Editor Emily Giblett Cartoonist Tom Morris Editorial Assistant Carwyn Williams Proofreaders Molly Ambler Hugh Doyle Get involved Editorial conferences are each Monday at 6:30pm. Proofreading takes place from 6pm on Thursdays in the media office. Write to the editor editor@gairrhydd.com At Gair Rhydd we take seriously our responsibility to maintain the highest possible standards. Sometimes, because of deadline pressures, we may make some mistakes. If you believe we have fallen below the standards we seek to uphold, please email editor@gairrhydd. com. You can view our Ethical Policy Statement and Complaints Procedure at cardiffstudentmedia.co.uk/complaints Opinions expressed in editorials are not reflective of Cardiff Student Media, who act as the publisher of Gair Rhydd in legal terms, and should not be considered official communications or the organisation’s stance. Gair Rhydd is a Post Office registered newspaper.

the free word Opinions, sex and safety

It’s time to talk about a few things that have been on my mind Maria Mellor


t’s safe to say that we’ve all got opinions. I’m lucky enough to have this little space in the paper to voice my opinion, a space which I’m sure most people just glance across before flicking their attention swiftly to the funny cartoon below. I could say what I like in theory. Pineapple. Bicycle pump. See, anything I like! However I am a journalist. I try to uphold a certain level of integrity. Nevertheless, it is I who decides what to write here. That’s why it’s strange to me when people have their opinions about my opinions. I actually love hearing about them - if you happen to have any thoughts about something I have said, feel free to drop me an email or send me a tweet. I digress - most of the topics I think to write about every week I have to stop myself and wonder would someone be offended by this? In general I’m not a very offensive person, but often enough I get a very well written email about what I’ve said that has

been wrong. Often I admit I’ve made a factual error, but my opinions still stand. Now, this isn’t about people getting easily offended. I do truly believe that everyone is entitled to their opinions and everyone has a right to voice them when they do get offended. I myself found myself becoming offended about an article a friend on Facebook posted the other day, ironically about how millennials get offended too easily. When it comes to creating a newspaper, it feels like sending your child into the world only to be knocked down by the school bullies. You have to not let yourself think like that. You have to think about what people might want to hear about, and what you might want people to hear about. That gets me on to something I want people to hear about this week - how to stay safe. I don’t feel safe anymore walking home by myself. In first year I would be fine to walk home (or stumble in some cases) by myself in the dark without a care in the world. I wish that we could all be as carefree

as that, but the truth of the matter is that bad things do happen. I was walking home by myself the other week very late at night. The streets were dark and there was hardly anybody on the streets. Truth be told, I was scared. I had heard about attacks in Cardiff and that had be worried about what might happen to me. Many people may think the same when we report a story about a rape or murder. Maybe they might wonder why we’d want to report a story like that in the first place. It is my hope that in reporting on them, and through our survey and our news articles, that one person might think about taking a taxi home with the union’s Safe Taxi scheme or asking for help from Nightline. We have done of our famous surveys this week, probably annoying every single person that have us on Facebook and Twitter. Can you answer our survey? Do you have five minutes to ANSWER OUR SURVEY?? We received some interesting re-

sults: most people seemed to be aware that the SU run safety schemes, the highest ranked being the Safe Taxi scheme. However, plenty of people seemed to agree that more needs to be done to advertise the variety of safety schemes available. It is quite tricky as to advertise them may make people more aware of the dangers, but in my opinion if it makes people more cautious and make them want to use the schemes when they’re in a tricky situation that’s definitely a good thing. On a completely different matter, Cardiff was shocked by a video of a couple doing-the-dirty in a popular nightclub. I was asked by several different people about whether or not we would be reporting on it. My answer is no - this page is the only place where you will find mention of the scandal. They must be so embarrassed about how widely reported the story was, but I’m going to try an not add too much more fuel to the media fire. People do silly things under the influence of alcohol and this is one of them.


Campus in Brief

Emily Giblett

UKIP could have to pay almost £150,000 back to the EU after being accused of misspending funds.

Tolls for drivers entering Wales via the two Severn bridges should be scrapped, according to the four major Welsh Assembly parties. In a Senedd debate led by UKIP, MPs from Labour, Plaid Cymru, and the Welsh Conservatives supported the abolition of the toll, which currently stands at a minimum charge of £6.60. The vote to scrap the charges passed last Wednesday with the motion being backed by 45 out of 60 assembly members. The charges could be fazed out as soon as 2018 when the crossings, currently owned by Severn River Crossing PLC, return to public ownership. Winds of up to 94 miles per hour hit Aberystwyth last Thursday, causing damage to trees and properties and disrupting travel routes. Though police said that no injuries had been reported, residents of the area took to Twitter to share pictures of the destruction caused by the adverse weather conditions, including overturned caravans and smashed windows. Thomas Scarrott, director of Clarach Bay Holiday Village near Aberystwyth, told WalesOnline: ‘It was a very frightening experience, it just came out of nowhere.’ The Met Office and Meteogroup said that although ‘extreme winds’ were recorded, they could not confirm that it was a tornado, as first suspected. Explorer and television personality Bear Grylls has come under attack from residents in the Welsh village of Llanbedrog after unveiling plans to build develop empty land on the nearby local beach, Mynydd Tir y Cwmwd. The application to build on the beach, which is a site of special scientific interest, has angered councillors and local residents, who stand in strong opposition to any kind of development in the area. Speaking to The Guardian, Councillor John Jones expressed suspicions about the financial motives behind Grylls’ plans to build in the desirable area, after a beach hut with no electricity or water in nearby Abersoch sold for £153,000.


The UK stationery brand Staples is set to be the next chain to disappear from the high street after being sold to restructuring company, Hilco Capital. The US branch of Staples put the company’s European operations under review in May this year after a planned merger with competitor Office Depot was blocked by competition authorities. In its most recent accounts, Staples UK reported pre-tax losses of £5 million for the year ending in January 2015. The deal, which will see the European arm of the business offloaded for ‘a nominal price’, is in line with Staples’ cost-cutting strategy. UKIP could have to pay almost £150,000 back to the EU after being accused of misspending funds. According to an audit report released by the European parliament, UKIP spent EU funds on analysis and polling in constituencies where they hoped to win seats, including interim party leader Nigel Farage’s constituency of South Thanet. The report concluded that “These services were not in the interest of the European party, which could neither be involved in the national elections nor in the referendum on national level.” A spokesman for UKIP said “We have been scrupulously careful and we have abided by the rules at all times.” A thrill-seeking Brit has achieved the Guinness World Record for the ‘highest bungee dunk’ after dipping a chocolate hobnob in a cup of tea whilst attached to a bungee cord measuring 240 feet. Simon Berry from Sheffield told The Daily Record ‘I have always wanted to be in the Guinness World Records book and this opportunity was too good to miss.’ The record attempt took place last Wednesday as part of Guinness World Records Day 2016.


The head of New Zealand’s Destiny Church has caused outrage after claiming that earthquakes in the region could be caused by homosexuality. Two weeks ago, an earthquake of 7.8 magnitude hit the South Island, killing two people. In a sermon posted on Facebook, preacher Brian Tamaki claimed that natural disasters were caused by sin, also referencing gay marriage. The sermon was given before the earthquake, but was later posted on social media labelled as a ‘prediction’. A petition calling for the church to be categorised as a hate group has now gathered over 100,000 signatures online. J.P. Morgan Chase, the US bank, is set to pay $264 million in order to settle claims that it hired the children of high-ranking Chinese officials in order to win business in the country. The bank has been disciplined with the fines after potentially breaching the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, banning companies from paying foreign government officials to help them establish business connections. J.P. Morgan devised a scheme whereby individuals who were otherwise unqualified for prestigious investment banking roles were hired because they were introduced by someone who could offer the bank business. A man from Oregon completely dissolved after falling into a geyser at Yellowstone Park, an investigation has found. Colin Nathaniel Scott, 23, from Portland, was walking with his sister when the pair strayed away from a designated route with the intention to bathe in spring water. Sable Scott, said that Colin had leaned over the fragile edge of the geyser to test its temperature with his finger when he slipped and fell in. When authorities searched the geyser the following day, they found no trace of the body, but they were able to recover his wallet and flip-flops.

Pictured: Bear Grylls comes under fire from Llanbedog residents (Source: LWC Kommunikacio via Flickr)

A man from Oregon completely dissolved after falling into a geyser at Yellowstone Park



Editors: Toby Holloway Gabriella Mansell Harry Webster @GairRhyddNews news@gairrhydd.com gairrhydd.com/news

Continued: Student Safety in Cathays Survey

Continued from front page

They all sound like good ideas but I’ve barely heard or seen any of them advertised around campus Cardiff University student

However, it is widely agreed that they need promoting further if they are to meet their potential. Students where also questioned about if the schemes did in fact, make them feel safer. 43 per cent of respondents agreed that they did feel safer with the Union’s schemes in place. Finally, the last question students were asked were if they thought the Union should be doing more to help. The response was generally positive with over 50 per cent of respondents saying that the Union did not need to do anything additionally.

Despite a large percentage of students not being aware of the full range of safety schemes available, the Student Union have several different initiatives. The main Union scheme is the Safe Taxi Scheme. This initiative has been running since 2012 and is a partnership between Cardiff Student’s Union and Dragon Taxis. The taxi scheme is available 24 hours a day and is there for students who need to get home safely but don’t have any money. All you have to do is phone Dragon Taxis on 029 203 3333 quoting ‘Cardiff University Safe Taxi Scheme’, giv-

How have the 2015 attacks changed how cautious you are on a night out? Less cautious About the same

ing your name and student number. The driver will check this and you will later receive a receipt. Within the next few days, you must visit the Finance Office at the Students’ Union and pay the price of your taxi fare. When questioned about what the Student Union had to offer President Sophie Timbers said: “With several initiatives in place including the Safe Taxi Scheme in partnership with Dragon Taxis, Drink Aware Crew, the student-led Safety Walk Scheme, and our partnership with South Wales Police Safety Bus, we are delighted to hear students are pleased

with the work the Students’ Union has done to educate students on how to keep safe.” With regards to feedback from the survey she then added: “Following student feedback from the survey we now know lots of students are aware of the different schemes we operate, we are going to ensure we spread the word to students to help them understand more about how to use these initiatives in a time of need. We encourage all students to undertake a volunteering activity too, and this is the sort of thing we’d love more students to get involved with!”

What are your biggest safety concerns whilst on a night out? Being touched innappropriately in a club


Walking home alone at night

Being approached by strangers

We are going to ensure we spread the word to students to help them understand more about how to use these initiatives in a time of need. Sophie Timbers, SU President

More cautious

Having your drink spiked

Losing your friends in a club

Getting a taxi alone

Cardiff artist teams up with charity to help homeless Pictured: Graffiti (Photographer: CBS Fan via Flickr)

Harry Webster


well-known Cardiff street artist has teamed up with the charity Huggard, in launching a new project seeking to get homeless people into work by teaching them creative skills. Kyle Legall, from Cardiff ’s Butetown district, is leading the homeless charity’s new ‘sm-Art initiative’, which will provide workshops in art and music in an attempt to further participants’ job prospects. The work produced under the initiative will then be exhibited at the charity’s Café ‘H’ on Dumballs road,

promoting the contributors developing skills, while also being available for purchase. Mr Legall, who in 2013 became the first recipient of the National Theatre Wales Artist of the Year award, then going on to become their artist-inresidence, will have his work used at the launch. It is also hope that some of the works produced under the initiative will be used to decorate the centre. A spokesperson for the charity said: “The Butetown artist has produced much of Cardiff ’s most eye-catching

urban art and commissioned graffiti, and his skills in animation, music, storytelling and graphic design make him an ideal collaborator for the Huggard Centre’s plans to develop inhouse creative workshops.” The Huggard Centre’s Café H was opened in June 2014. Huggard’s chief executive Richard Edward’s said of the café: “Customers at Café H make a tangible difference by actively supporting ethical trading, and funding the wider work of Huggard within the local Cardiff community and outlying areas.

“Since opening, Café H customers have also been sponsoring much appreciated free meals for homeless people through our loyalty card, which provides a free meal to a person in need for every 10 cups of coffee bought.” In the last year Huggard has provided 826 people with accommodation, and provided 804 homeless people with training and development sessions. The organisation also claims to have gained £1.5million in benefits for people who were previously reliant on begging for their income.


Rockin’ around the 40 metre high, tree-like structure from China

Complaints over lack of Christmas tree at lights switch on Toby Holloway


ardiff ’s Castle’s Christmas tree controversy took a new turn last week, as a Cardiff-based tree surgeon company offered to install a giant, 20ft tree in front of the castle gates. The proposal came after a small number of the 113,000 people that attended Cardiff Council’s Step Into Christmas event made complaints over the fact that there was no Christmas tree on show. There were various criticisms of the lights switch on on social media. On

Twitter, Trevor Keane (@tkeane20) said: “Are fir trees so rare here that we have to import from China? And at what expense? Probably be added to the credit card bill!!” Another Twitter user, @Ztephanie, said: “shipped from China! Disgraceful! There are many Christmas tree farms in Wales. Buy from, support, local growers!” The lack of foliage was the result of the incoming tree - a 40 metre high artificial structure sourced from China through UK-based company

MK Illuminations- having not arrived in the Welsh capital on time for the switching on of the lights. Now, Cardiff tree surgeon group Tree Control have penned a letter to Cardiff Council, offering to install an entirely natural tree for free, outside the castle. Speaking to Wales Online, co-director of Tree Control, Amanda Anderson, said: “In the economic times we are in, to go outside Britain to get a tree is a bit of a poke in the eye. “An artificial tree is also not in keep-

ing with the prestigious environment they will be putting it in front of.” Mrs Anderson added: “I am sure there are many businesses in Cardiff which would have gladly contributed towards sponsoring a British tree. “The cost of a real tree bought in Wales would be fractional compared to the cost the council is going to incur by importing a 40-metre structure.” The artificial tree-like structure is set to arrive in Cardiff next week, and will be unveiled on the 25th of November.

“ To go outside Britain to get a tree is a bit of a poke in the eye. Amanda Anderson, codirector of Tree Control

Pictured: These are not the trees you’re looking for... (Photo Credit: Nicholas Erwin via Flickr)

Project SEARCH launches internships at Cardiff University Toby Holloway

We hope to kick-start this Winter season and bring a vintage twist to Christmas shopping. Organiser and founder, Lou Lou Glover


ardiff University have given 12 Cardiff and Vale College (CAVC) students internships at the university as part of a scheme that aims to help young people with disabilities become educated and find work. The initiative is part of American programme Project SEARCH, which started in the USA 20 years ago, and has been adopted by Cardiff University this year; one of only of only three UK universities to do so. The CAVC students all suffer from conditions such as autism and learning difficulties, however Project SEARCH, which is also supported by the Welsh Lottery Fund and Engage to Change, offers the opportunity for students such as these to develop a number of employment skills. Project SEARCH was founded by director Erin Riehle, beginning life at Cincinnati’s Children’s Hospital Medical Centre and spreading to countries including Canada, Australia, the Netherlands, England, Scotland, the Republic of Ireland and now, Wales. Speaking about Cardiff University’s new involvement with the scheme, Erin Riehle said: “I am really excited to be partnering with Cardiff University for the first Project SEARCH programme in Wales. “The partnership with the University, Learning Disability Wales, Elite SEA and Cardiff and Vale College is a strong one and will ensure the

students are trained in the valuable work skills they need to get great jobs when they finish the course.” The CAVC students, all of whom have entered their final year of fulltime education, will have the opportunity to experience a range of different workplace environments, including laboratories, office or retail spaces. Following the launch of the Project SEARCH scheme at Cardiff University, Professor Elizabeth Treasure, Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Cardiff University, said: “Working closely with Cardiff and Vale College, ELITE SEA and Learning Disability Wales, we jumped at the chance to be the first employer in Wales to offer internships as part of this excellent project. “The University will benefit from their skills and the young people themselves will gain valuable experience that will put them in a strong position when they leave college and look for employment.” CAVC student Hollie Newbury, 21, who is completing an internship in Cardiff University’s Human Resources depratment, said: “I didn’t know what it would be like but I’ve been filing and I’m enjoying it. “The people are all really nice and welcoming and I can get on with it at my own pace. “I’m getting good experience and

I want to get a job at the end of it.” Kay Martin, Deputy Principal of Cardiff and Vale College, said: “Project SEARCH is a unique and ground-breaking project for young people with learning disabilities, and we’re delighted to be the first and only college in Wales to be offering such a meaningful opportunity that will support our learners’ progression into employment.” Another of the CAVC students, Shane Halton,18, is an intern in the School of Chemistry, said: “Getting a job at the end of it is my aim and getting experience towards getting a job.

“I’m learning new things. When I first started I was doing spreadsheets for risk assessments and user manuals.” He added: “I’ve since been going around the labs making sure everything is safe and people are using the right equipment, and I’ve been removing chemicals that people have finished using. “I’ve most enjoyed going to the labs because I like being on my feet and getting to know all the different chemicals.” Project SEARCH will run for 10 weeks at Cardiff University.

Pictured: CAVC students with Cardiff University staff at the Project SEARCH launch (Photo Credit: Cardiff University)


Fake MEP second-most recognisable in Wales Toby Holloway


survey conducted by Cardiff University’s Wales Governance Centre has revealed that a non-existent and entirely fictitious person, Elwyn Davies, is in fact Wales’ second-most recognisable Member of the European Parliament (MEP). The survey was a part of the 2016 Welsh Election Study, an exploration of voting, political attitudes and political knowledge in Wales, and gave respondents 30 seconds to answer the question: “Wales is represented by four Members in the European Parliament. Which, if any, of the following people are among Wales’ four representatives in the European Parliament?” Six options were given as an answer to the question, two of which were real MEPs and the other four of which were made up names. There were four real MEPs used in the survey, and two

of these were always present in a random list of names, the other four of which were fictional. Welsh MEP Nathan Gill was the most widely recognised name, with 16 per cent of respondents having known his name. However, his imaginary friend (and apparently, colleague), Elwyn Davies, was only 4 per cent behind, with 12 per cent of those surveyed selecting his name. Jill Evans, who has been an actual MEP for Wales for 17 years, was less recognisable than Mr Davies, as were Derek Vaughan and Kay Swinburne, whose name was only recognised by 6 per cent of participants. Discussing the findings, Professor Roger Scully, Acting Director of the Wales Governance Centre, and Principal Investigator for the 2016 Welsh Election Study, said: “It’s difficult to know what to say about some of these

results. It is, I think, probably unsurprising that Nathan Gill came top, given the higher profile that his role in the Assembly election was giving him. “But none of the other Welsh MEPs were selected by a greater proportion of the WES respondents that that legendary figure in Welsh politics ‘Elwyn Davies’ – whose contributions to our national political life I feel I need not elaborate upon. “Even Jill Evans, who had been an MEP for Wales for almost 17 years at the time this survey was implemented, had her name selected by fewer people than chose the mysteriously popular Mr Davies. For Kay Swinburne, Conservative MEP for Wales since 2009, the picture is even worse: her name was picked out barely more than any of the false names listed.” Professor Scully added: “I spent

much of the early part of my academic career studying the European Parliament; one of the things that my research impressed on me was that most MEPs are very hard working individuals. Yet the efforts of Wales’ four current representatives in the EU’s elected chamber do not appear to have had much impact on the public. Barely one-fifth of our entire sample were able to correctly choose the name of an actual MEP from those presented before them. And some of those apparently correct answers may even have been guesses, as almost as many respondents picked names that turned out to be false. “We will, of course, very likely be losing our MEPs when the UK leaves the European Union. But on these results, it seems fair to say that most of the Welsh public are unlikely to notice.”

Barely onefifth of our entire sample were able to correctly choose the name of an actual MEP Professor Roger Scully

Man charged with sexual assault of student Maria Mellor


student, 20, was raped after a night out when she was walking home alone. Her attacker pushed her against a wall in a lane off Queen Street. Aymen Smaili, 35, has been jailed for five and a half years after raping the woman in September. He followed her after she left Live Lounge. Cardiff Crown Court heard that the student started walking home at 02:30BST and told her friends she would be fine by herself as it was “only a short walk”. The defendant, who was on a six

month visitors visa from the Middle East, followed the victim from the club and approached her but she could not understand what he was saying due to his strong accent. Judge Michael Fitton told Smaili: “You waited in my view to see if anyone was going to go with her, and it was about a minute before you moved after her. “At that stage, in my view she was particularly vulnerable.” The victim’s statement read that she was “frozen” as he raped her and was “really scared” and had “tears in her

eyes”. The victim told the police: “This makes me feel dirty, and I don’t feel comfortable in my own skin. “I feel contaminated. I just want to scrub it all away.” Smaili asked for her name and phone number after the attack and she gave him fake versions of both. He pled guilty in October which reduced his sentence from eight years and three months. Smaili must serve half of the sentence before he is eligible for release and must also register on the sex offenders list.

“All I want for Christmas is a vintage 80’s ski jacket” Toby Holloway

When you buy vintage, you’re buying into something that is unique Emily Taysom, Lou Lou’s Vintage Fair


n award-winning vintage fair is set to arrive in Cardiff this Christmas, in the form of a ‘Christmas Special’, with many activities, attractions and vintage garments on offer. Lou Lou’s Vintage Fair, winner of ‘Best Vintage Fair in the UK’ three years running, will be comprised of 40 independent traders from around Cardiff, and from across the UK. Commenting on the event, founder and organiser, Lou Lou Glover, said: “We’re very excited to bring a Christmas Special to Cardiff this season. We hope to kick-start this Winter season and bring a vintage twist to Christmas shopping. Vintage makes a perfect Christmas present for someone special as everyone can appreciate a beautiful, handcrafted piece that is one of a kind. “Whatever you’re looking for, the event promises to be a one-stop shop to get a variety of vintage gems that are on the market at the time.” In addition to vintage clothes and accessories, the fair will also offer many other attractions, including a ‘vintage tea party’ at pop-up tea room Lil’s Parlour and beauty salon ‘Pop-Up Parlour’, which will provide the opportunity for

people to be transformed into fashion icons from past decades via a vintage makeover. Cardiff-based close-harmony singing duo Gentlemen Prefer Blondes are also set to perform at the Vintage Fare, The duo specialises in “adding a fun, swing style touch to hits from the 40’s and 50’s as well as some modern classics”. Speaking to Gair Rhydd, Emily Taysom of Lou Lou’s Vintage Fair said: “Lou Lou’s offers students an accessible way to get into vintage as it’s a one-stop shop of the best traders that we’ve carefully handpicked for the event. When you buy vintage, you’re buying into something that is unique and has it’s own story which you can then discover and add to in your time owning it. “You get more choice than just reproduced and mass-manufactured high street clothing, and it gives you an opportunity to add some character into your wardrobe which I think is really important for students as you’re at a point in your life when you’re finding out who you are and developing your personal style. “Also, you tend to have more care

Pictured: Left: Lou Lou’s Vintage Fair (Photo Credit: Lou Lou’s Vintage Fair) Above: Cardiff Crown Court (Photo Credit: Along time ago via Flickr)

and detail put into the making of these clothes and accessories, which is why they have lasted for so long and still remain in a good, wearable condition. It’s a great opportunity to pick up some good quality items at an affordable price.” She added: “We’ve been holding our fairs in Cardiff for a very long time, I actually first went to one when I was a

student at Cardiff Uni and just found it a really good day as you can shop somewhere different and spend some time with friends. We come to Cardiff on a very regular basis, visiting around 3-4 times a year.” The event will take place at Cardiff ’s City Hall on Sunday 27th of November from 10am to 4pm, will cost £2 for adults, and is free for children.










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COMMENT 7 Editors: Helena Hanson Caragh Medlicott Sam Saunders @GairRhyddCom comment@gairrhydd.com gairrhydd.com/comment

Sequel madness looms with ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Pictured: ‘Fantastic Beasts’ is the latest instalment of the ‘Harry Potter’ franchise. (Source: AlberAlberto Alvarez-Perea via flickr.)

Sam Saunders

The studio responsible for the film have already announced that there will be another four movies to follow this one. FOUR!?!?!?!?


t’s quite old news to pretty much everyone, but I think the fact that ‘Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them’ came out at the weekend is probably a rather big event. If you’ve been hiding under a rock for the past year or so, there’s probably a few more important things we need to catch you up on, but this film is a sort of spinoff-come-prequel to the billion dollar ‘Harry Potter’ film franchise. Set in 1920s New York, it follows the exploits of one Newt Scamander, a wizard expelled from Hogwarts, who arrives in America with a magical briefcase full of the aforementioned ‘Fantastic Beasts’. I’ve not yet seen the film, but it does reignite the debate over the sequel/ prequel/spinoff trend that seems to be symptomatic of Hollywood these days. ‘Fantastic Beasts’, I will concede, is a bit different, as the script comes mostly from the author of the ‘Harry Potter’ books, J.K.Rowling and is somewhat based on something that already existed in the wizarding world (‘Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them’ was a textbook at Hogwarts and Rowling later wrote a version to raise money for Comic Relief ). The thing I do take exception to however, is the fact that the studio responsible for the film have already announced that there will be another four movies to follow this one. FOUR!?!?!?!? I mean the film’s not even come out yet and here they are, plotting out a roadmap for the next eight years or so. Maybe I’m being a bit of hypocrite here, as when Marvel and Lucasfilm announce their various film slates, I’m the first

one there, lapping it all up like a good little nerd. I feel, however, that both these companies were slightly different, as Marvel has had genuine critical and commercial success with mostly all of their comic book films and although no-one could truly defend the god-awful ‘Star Wars’ prequels, there was a sense that there was a wrong to be righted there (which was done in glorious fashion with ‘The Force Awakens’). Most of which is totally different for the ‘Harry Potter’ movies, as there are some good ones, but the vast majority are mediocre. I wonder if I’ll come out of the cinema wishing Rowling had just written the script as a book instead? The difference between the three examples listed above is that ‘Fantastic Beasts’ currently has no proven track record; there were several wildly successful films before Marvel began to announce their roadmap, and there are very few people that would agree that a new ‘Star Wars’ film would have been shunned. I think the best solution would be to see how the film is received by audiences first, then announce a sequel, rather than immediately suggesting there will be four more films, which gives the production company more than a slight hint of arrogance to me. I know that a lot of people will go and see ‘Fantastic Beasts’, mostly as it’s a ‘Harry Potter’ spin-off. The issue is that, apart from being set in the same world, I see very little attraction here. They haven’t done the trick of ‘The Force Awakens’ or ‘The Hobbit’ of using popular returning characters to sell the film,

apart from a Dumbledore name drop, so where’s the link? This film reopens the debate on needless sequels, and the downright stupid practice of splitting book to film adaptations into parts. We’ll have to wait and see whether ‘Fantastic Beasts’ turns out to be an example of the former, as it’ll no doubt make enough money to warrant financing another film. The example that I always quote is that of ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’, in which the first film was excellent, but did we really need three sequels, plus another due next year? You could argue (and I’d agree) that the second one deserves its place, but the rest do not. This also ties into a simple truth that I’ve observed over the past few years, which is that as long as sequels/films in the same franchise are good, then people don’t really seem to mind. This is obvious when looking at the disparity between Marvel and DC films, the former of which is doing great, whereas negative press of the latter is tanking their consumer good will. The policy of splitting book adaptations has also become ridiculous in recent years, the prime example being ‘The Hobbit’, a whimsical 300-page book that was turned into a series which lasts as long as ‘The Lord of the Rings’, despite those books sporting over 1500 pages. For some films, I can see the appeal, as the final ‘Harry Potter’ book probably warrants two films, as do ones that add something, like the first part of ‘The Hunger Games: Mockingjay’. However, splitting books like ‘Twilight’ and ‘Divergent’, whose previous instalments had already re-

ceived dreadful reviews, is simply beyond the pale. I’m starting to wish they’d just made one bloody ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows’ and a massive ‘Hobbit’ movie and this trend would never have started at all. Yet, despite my furore, ‘Fantastic Beasts’ is not the first film that has announced a wide range of sequels. The much-publicised ‘Avatar’, which seems to have been ‘getting a sequel’ for what seems like the entirety of my life, has also got two or three sequels in the pipeline (I’ve stopped caring by now to be honest). The thing is ‘Avatar’ succeeded for only about two reasons: 3D and CGI. The plot is boring and recycled and the film is too long, but it looks amazing (on a good screen and Blu-ray) and it was one of the earliest examples of what 3D could actually do for film. But can the sequels do this? And is there enough demand? I think that by the end of the third one I’ll want to run away from society and live in the trees like the aliens in that movie. So then, what have we learned? I’m quite angry, as you might’ve guessed, but that’s not all bad, you’ve read this, and that means that I’ve done my job. I hugely dislike all the practices I’ve mentioned in this article. It’s fine when the films are good, but when companies just turn out crap that people inexorably go and see (I’m looking at you, ‘Grown Ups 1 & 2’) it puzzles me. Not only do these films take away from promoting original, good ideas and talent, seeing them rewards the type of business practice that really grinds my gears. I need a lie down.

‘Avatar’, which seems to have been ‘getting a sequel’ for what seems like the entirety of my life, has also got two or three sequels in the pipeline.


Prince Harry hits out at media

Royal condemns ‘racist’ press coverage of his relationship with Meghan Markle Caragh Medlicott

The reaction of both the media and the general public suggests to me we’re all a lot more old fashioned than we like to think.

Hugh Doyle

As it is a symbol which some may find offensive, prohibiting it being worn during these upcoming football matches is probably for the best.


ress attention has been swirling around Prince Harry and his American girlfriend Megahn Markle in recent weeks after he confirmed the pair’s romantic relationship in an official statement. It wasn’t all love hearts and roses though as Prince Harry hit out at media for their coverage of the relationship, and – in particular- their representation of Markle. The statement describes a ‘wave of abuse and harassment’ against her, damning much of the content in the press as ‘outright sexism and racism’. The reaction of both the media and the general public suggests to me we’re all a lot more old fashioned than we like to think. While both celebrity culture and the obsession with the royal family - (come on people, they’re just a rich family born into a name!)- s somewhat mind-boggling to me. What is truly disheartening is the downright awful treatment of Markle. People seem enraged that Prince Harry is romantically connected to someone who is, 1) mixed race and 2) an actress who has partaken in some more “steamy” scenes in the US drama series Suits. The implication being that these things somehow lessen her worth as a person, think about that for a minute, that’s really bad, isn’t it? It is racism and it is slutshaming. No matter how you dress it up, it’s pretty ugly. The general consensus seems to be that by grace of being a Prince,


Harry should be with some white, conservative, pristine daughter-of-alord. Because this is someone who is the ‘right match’ for a Prince, because a Prince is inherently better than the average person, right? And any woman who is not white, ‘respectable’ or from a rich family, is ill fitting of his status. Now I’m sure a lot of people would argue with this, say that’s not what the media or people ranting online have meant at all. But if you strip it back to the bare bones, that is what people have been implying. There’s an overriding sense that people think Markle is just not good enough for Harry. When ultimately they are two people that none of us actually know. They may be public figures, but we don’t know them on a personal level so the ‘who’s punching’ debate isn’t one we can legitimately have. The articles I have seen swirling online have truly amazed me. The things people pick at make you weep for humanity. There’s been stories on how big (or, apparently, small) Markle’s mother’s house is. A breakdown of her ‘ancestry’ with nod, nod, wink, wink comments about her statements on being proud of her heritage (the undertone being, she’s proud of her history!? Pah! Could you imagine?). The backlash after Harry’s statement wasn’t much better either. The Sun even said Harry needed to ‘get real’, explaining that as a Prince he can’t expect the same level of privacy as a normal person. While I

Pictured: Prince Harry is used to receiving attention in the media. (Source: KoenbrNZ via Flickr)

don’t want to be caught agreeing with The Sun, there is an extent to which Harry can’t expect to receive the same privacy as us lowly commoners. Just as he is afforded many privileges and luxuries most of us could never dream of. However, The Sun are somewhat missing the point in that, Harry wasn’t just calling for privacy, but respect. He was calling for the press to refrain from making racist and sexist comments about his girlfriend, and that is, after all, a bit more reasonable. Others have come out to moan about the amount of attention the

story has received, asking why we care about the royal family so much in the first place. I can’t say I disagree with this sentiment, but the unfortunate reality is, a lot of people do care. And while their relationship still gets attention in the media, Markle deserves to be treated with the same level or respect and privacy we would give any other human being with. To me this whole case ultimately reveals that as a society we still have prejudices to fight and hierarchies to break down. No human is inherently better than another, so maybe we should stop acting as such.

Harry was calling for the press to refrain from making racist and sexist comments about his girlfriend.

Should Rooney be a role model?

feel bad for Wayne Rooney. Maybe I’m biased as a United fan, but England’s all-time record goalscorer seems to be getting a bad rap as of late. Firstly, for his early season form (which even I admit was dire) but more recently for his antics off the pitch. If you haven’t heard, Rooney went for a drink at the team’s hotel bar with some teammates on the Saturday after England’s match with Scotland. At the same time, a wedding was taking place and the wedding party asked if they could take some photos with Rooney and others. They obliged by this point however Rooney was, as one source said so eloquently to The Sun “really s***faced”. The Sun then published these photos and Rooney has had to apologise to Gareth Southgate and some of the FA’s top brass. But why should Rooney have to apologise? The FA says it’s because “England personnel have a responsibility to behave appropriately at all times”. Sure, that makes a bit of sense. England players are in the public eye and therefore can be role models. But really, always? Ultimately the reason this has kicked off is because Rooney was drinking at a hotel bar, got carried away while drinking with friends and someone from the wedding asked

to take a few pictures. If the wedding wasn’t there then it’s unlikely we have ever known about this. So really, is Rooney the culprit here or a victim of his own fame? I obviously don’t have the experience of being a celebrity but I think I’m allowed to make an assumption or two about being one. One that with the fortune and fame comes a lot of pressure from the public and two celebrities like to have a good time like us normal people. Then why not let celebrities, especially when under such pressure from the media and in Rooney’s case, disgruntled United fans like myself, have a good time? Rooney may be the England captain and therefore a role model for people around the globe nevertheless I think in this case he has been unfairly treated and scrutinised to such an extent by the media. I could take this opportunity to question whether Rooney or footballers, in general, should be seen as role models. However, I don’t want to go down this path because I feel I would be flogging a dead horse since we ask this question every time some form of celebrity does something controversial (*cough*, Kim Kardashian) and yet they remain role models no matter what they do. What I will say however is that this

Pictured: England vs Scotland was played at Wembley. (Source: Mick Backer via Flickr)

is one incident and Rooney has done a lot of work for charity, for example, he is aiming to raise five million pounds for charity in his testimonial year and having footballers as role models does at least promote exercise among young people. What we should be questioning here is why this is a story. I’m not questioning the need for freedom of the press but almost the opposite. With the freedom given to the press, there is a responsibility to hold peo-

ple to account and report the stories which affect people. However, with this story, if you can call it that, this hasn’t happened. Instead a few photos have led to an overreaction by the FA who have now banned England players from going out. Rooney has fallen victim to a new age of journalism which relies on social media and the number of clicks generated. It says a lot we know more about Rooney’s Saturday night than our own Brexit plans.

Rooney has fallen victim to a new age of journalism which relies on social media and the number of clicks generated.


Fakebook: hoax news and clickbait on social media G Gavin Collins

Sensationalist and misleading headlines designed to generate page views, regardless of the cost to journalistic integrity.


n the wake of perhaps the greatest upset in American political history, Facebook’s problem with fake news stories reaching its now trending list has caught the ire of those still seeking to put the blame for Trump’s victory on a force powerful enough to deceive roughly half of the American electorate. Although hoax news stories on Facebook about the ‘Clinton crime family’ likely did not swing the election in Trump’s favour, the fears of many observers concerned with the dwindling importance of truth in media are not unfounded. Internet-based ‘new media’ , on social media and elsewhere, uses the business model of per click advertising. This incentivizes media companies to write articles that generate the greatest number of clicks. The term ‘clickbait’ has arisen to describe the recent phenomenon of large numbers of sensationalist and misleading headlines designed to generate page views, regardless of the cost to journalistic integrity. The recent Facebook hoax news stories are simply the logical conclusion to a business model which is fundamentally incompatible with serious journalism. Business models built on sensationalism and advertising are far more effective online than in print publications, because to view the content online, the reader must only connect to the offered link, however briefly. It would be like the publisher of

the sort of print magazine displayed in grocery store checkout aisles earning advertising money based on the number of askance glances each issue received – in other words, quite effective indeed. Print media has found itself unable to keep up with this new click-based business model, and readers are now swapping traditional print media for internet news. According to the New York Times, 44% of Americans now get their news from Facebook. In response, print media has begun adopting the tactics of online media companies. Clickbait headlines are now used to advertise articles on Facebook and other social media sites. Newspapers and magazines, such as the Economist and the Financial Times, tend to advertise on social media their most trending articles. These are often controversial opinion pieces, or news dealing with a salacious topic. Although print media has maintained a great deal of serious reporting, this is often not the content which is advertised online. If one does not have an online subscription to traditional media and uses the internet as a primary source of news, one will likely have a good understanding of developments in pop culture, but little else. Another important issue in online media is the rise of opinion-based journalism. Various sites now simultaneously report the news, while catering to a particular set of political

Pictured: Social media has led to a rise in clickbait articles. (Source: Jason Howie via Flickr)

views. If one is on the left, there is the Huffington Post, Slate, Vice, or Vox, while conservatives tend to flock to the Drudge Report or Breitbart. This latter website, Breitbart, was instrumental in organising grassroots support for Donald Trump when he first began his campaign. A shameless pro-Trump editorial policy has now landed the editor, Stephen Bannon, in Trump’s White House as Chief Strategist. The power and influence of this new partisan media must not be underestimated. The result of this sort of content on the online media landscape has been the gradual eradication of almost all serious and in-depth analysis.

Complex issues now receive the same treatment as celebrity gossip, or are given a divisive partisan spin, which precludes the sort of discussion required for disparate groups to find common ground. Sadly, it does not look like this trend will be reversing anytime soon. Alternative media sites, such as Vice News and Buzfeed, which CNN’s President Jeff Zucker has accurately labelled, ‘native advertising shops’, are more popular than even before. And make no mistake, it is the average internet user who has driven this media revolution. Indeed, if there is any truth to be learned from online alternative media, it is that people like to be told what to think.

Business models built on sensationalism and advertising are far more effective online than in print publications.

Time to Lego: company ends association with the Daily Mail Lego ends free promotional toys over ‘divisive’ coverage of migrants

Dan Heard

The ‘Stop Funding Hate’ campaign has lobbied against a number of companies, including Marks and Spencer, Waitrose and John Lewis.


here have been a few unceremonious break ups over the past few months. Brad and Angelina. The UK and the European Union. The USA and common sense. There is one that might seem slightly trivial when compared to these that got a fair share of attention this week, and rightly so. Lego have announced that they are ending their association with the Daily Mail, finishing a deal that has seen the Danish-based company give away free toys to readers for a number of years. Lego have ended their association due to what they consider to be “divisive” coverage of migrants in the newspaper. It follows on from a campaign urging big firms to stop advertising with distributors who “portray migrants in overwhelmingly negative terms”. The ‘Stop Funding Hate’ campaign has lobbied against a number of companies, including Marks and Spencer, Waitrose and John Lewis, to follow Lego in uniting against the likes of the Mail, Daily Express and The Sun. The appeals come only weeks after the Mail and the Express ran headlines and front page stories damning

the High Court ruling that Parliament must be given a vote before the government can trigger Article 50 and begin negotiating Brexit. Criticism of the tabloid’s coverage of migrants hasn’t just come from Lego though. Last month, Match of the Day presenter Gary Lineker faced an enormous backlash on social media after appealing for basic human decency to be shown towards migrants by the media, and by our society as a whole. Instead of being supported for his views, he was ostracised, told to sit down, shut up and focus on football. As the face of Walker’s crisps for nearly thirty years, he does have a fair bit of swaying power behind him, lobbying for the Leicestershire firm to end their advertisements in The Sun, who have never been afraid to court controversy, as Lineker knows all too well. I find it hard to believe that this kind of action hasn’t happened sooner. These papers have such a clear political agenda and ideology that of course their coverage of issues such as migration and Britain’s position within Europe would be reflected as such. Advertising exists to make money

Pictured: Lego has decided to end its promotions in the Daily Mail (Source: Jagrap via Flickr)

“ for the companies promoting their products, but that doesn’t mean that they are not involved in what is going on, as newspapers increasingly rely on the revenue to keep churning out these stories. ‘Stop Funding Hate’ posted a video online reminding viewers who were excitedly looking forward to the new John Lewis Christmas advert, that once Buster the Boxer had stopped bouncing on the trampoline,

Britain’s favourite department store will go back to funding hate and discrimination in the national press through their advertisements. With as much uncertainty as there is following the results of both the EU referendum and, of course, the US Presidential Election, the last thing that is needed is a double-page spread slating migrant families next to some salt and vinegar crisps. That decision is now with the advertisers.

Advertising exists to make money for the companies promoting their products, but that doesn’t mean that they are not involved in what is going on.



Barack Obanter

George Watkins

The biggest problem with Obama is his charm.He would steal your future partner before you’d even started going out just by saying hello.


An ode to the outgoing President

here’s not very much to be excited about in America at the moment. People aren’t leaving the house as much, seeing that in the news the second top trending search on Pornhub was ‘Melania Trump naked’ (with ‘Melania Trump nude’ and ‘Ivanka Trump nude’ coming close behind). There’s been a momentous surge in the number of professional political commentators on Facebook as a result of the state of the States, but I say we need to come together to celebrate just how much the outgoing President turns us into fanboys and fangirls for one last time before he vanishes from our lives forever. Close your eyes and imagine the current Prime Minister Theresa May as the feature of a Buzzfeed article discussing things we all do in private, appearing in a series of GIFs like her checking herself out in the mirror or doodling a picture of her crush. It just doesn’t seem quite right does it? Barack did it, and it was beautiful. I think it’s because the American and British political systems just come across so differently. This was bound to happen though, considering our Parliament is older

than their country (1707, for you history buffs out there). Britain is the equivalent of a parent at a teenager’s birthday party, keeping at the back of the room and making sure the lids are done up tightly on the bottles so that none gets spilled on the brand new carpet. David Cameron, when he would follow Barack like a pet, was not much better. It seems like every Prime Minister has to endure this humiliation, even Tony Blair, when dealing with a man with the reading age of a 6 year old. America is our rebellious child with three ear piercings, a tattoo of a mandala on their thigh and enough wavey garms to supply the people of Bristol for a century, and Barack is their cool friend who has a car. The biggest problem with Mr Obama is his charm. Introducing him to your family would be the worst thing you could ever do. He would steal your future partner before you’d even started going out by just saying hello. Then there’s Donald’s forced grin, which would crack every mirror in a five- mile radius. A half-smirk from Barack would melt you into a puddle of embar-

rassed and flustered goo. There’s no way you can have fish without chips. There’s no way you can have Barack without Michelle (I’ll leave it to you to decide who’s the fish and who’s the chips). The public think so too. They have her back. The mayor of a small town in Virginia has been forced to resign at the time of writing for referring to Mrs Obama as an ‘ape in heels’, after a petition demanding her step down accruing over 170,000 signatures. What’s not to love about her? She appeared on James Corden’s ‘Carpool Karaoke’ for God’s sake, promoting a single for their education initiative for young girls singing along with Missy Elliott. I really struggle to think how I’m going to cope without Barack, Michelle and their daughters in the White House. I know it doesn’t affect me. It literally has no impact on my everyday life. I just like knowing that they’re there, on the other side of the Atlantic, keeping an eye on people like Donald Trump so that we don’t have to. Americans love the Queen and we love the Obamas. The Trumps certainly have a lot to live up to. I don’t

think a slightly creepy relationship with his daughter will sit well somehow compared to funding education for underprivileged young girls across the globe. It will all happen so fast. The Obamas will meet the Trumps at the door and shake hands. Melania will look to Michelle and say, “Hi I’m Michelle”, and they will part ways. Where do they go now? What does Barack do? I say take a job as either a voiceover artist for car adverts (picture him saying “plush interiors”) or becoming a peace envoy. He could well solve the crisis in Gaza by making the Palestinians and Israelis play basketball together. I feel like this has gone slightly off topic now, but the main message still stands: whether you consider Barack a lame duck president or ultimately progressive despite being hindered by a Republican/Conservative-dominated political system, he was the first black President of the United States, and he’s just a bit of a legend. At least we’ve got the first orange president in the history of the United States. What was that about a lack of diversity?

Pictured: O’Bama: I put a whopee cushion under Trum’s seat Biden: You the man B! (source: Donkey Hotey via Flickr)

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The Blame Game

I didn’t say that you did it, I said I was going to blame you Helena Hanson

There is a dark side to blame shifting. A depth that is more frightening than the triviality of forgetting you’ve eaten all your snacks or swearing at a grey cloud.


am a self-confessed blame shifter. I like to blame other people for things that are essentially my own fault. There is likely to be some sort of psychological analysis that could be done to explain my blame shifting. Perhaps it is the consequence of some significant childhood trauma that I have repressed throughout my life or something equally as dire. But this is a start. Hello everybody, my name is Helena Hanson, and I am a blame shifter. There is a simple way to discover whether or not you also are a blame shifter. When I look in the cupboard and find that I have no chocolate digestives when I thought I had at least a couple left over, I automatically assume somebody else must have eaten them. It does not occur to me to think back to the previous night, and consider that I may have potentially eaten the whole packet by myself within the space of an hour while I watched The Apprentice. A few days ago my favourite mug disappeared. It was only after hours of forcefully cross-examining my flatmates and accusing every human to have set foot in our house since September of smashing it and surreptitiously throwing it away behind my back, that I discovered it on my bedroom windowsill, behind three other mugs. Oops. If any of the above sound familiar, it is with regret that I inform you, you too are a blame shifter. Welcome. *sympathetic applause* Late for work? Bloody traffic lights! Got no money? Bloody don’t get paid enough. Bad day? Bloody horoscope. Tired? Bloody neighbours. Tripped over in those ankle boots that I knew were two sizes

too big when I bought them but they were in the sale so I couldn’t resist and took them anyway even though I knew I would trip myself up? BLOODY CARDIFF COUNCIL AND THEIR BLOODY UNEVEN BLOODY PAVEMENTS. We do it every day. We blame that guy who bumped his car for causing a traffic jam and making us late for work. We blame our flat mates that we’re poor this month, because they always have the heating on. We blame our lecturers, because we’re failing and our deadlines are too close. Really we know it’s not their fault. We are late because we snoozed our alarm too many times and didn’t leave the house on time. We are skint because we bought that £75 Zara coat that we didn’t really need. We are failing because we go out too much and can’t be arsed to organise ourselves appropriately. There’s a dark side to blame shifting though. A depth that is more frightening than the triviality of forgetting you’ve eaten all your snacks, or swearing at a grey cloud. The blame game extends further than our own little lives. It magnifies and multiplies over borders and generations and populations. It grows and teaches and preaches and spreads like wildfire. Until one day the blame no longer feels like just an accusation, it becomes actuality. It becomes fact. B ecause the Islamic community did 9/11 right? With the help of Bush, of course! And black people are responsible for America’s gun crime right? And the Mexicans keep raping the women of America, but it’s definitely the girl’s own fault too ‘cause you know like she had a skirt on and some slutty eyeshadow.

Oh, don’t even get me started on the gays! Did you know that they invented heart disease? Yeh! Just like Beyonce murdered Whitney and Mickey Mouse shot Biggy! Global warming? That’s the polar bears own fault mate! Stop blaming refugees and migrants for the fact you can’t get a job, Steve. You haven’t got a job because you only have four GCSE’s and deal drugs. Those that you say are stealing your jobs work in education, law, medicine, Steve. They aren’t stealing your job in Poundland. Even if they were, it’s not ‘stealing’ unless they take what belongs to you, and it never did belong to you really, did it Steve? It is a proven fact that you are more likely to be crushed to death by a sofa than killed by a Muslim. A sofa. Yet we still blame the Islamic community for terrorism. Imagine trying to live your life, and every day being expected to account for, or apologise for the actions or beliefs of others. Even if it’s just a minuscule few that have no connection to you other than that they claim to practice the same religion, or speak the same language, or have the same skin colour, or bloody don’t even have the same skin colour. I have a privilege that I can acknowledge. Whilst I cannot claim to understand how it feels to be blamed every day just for being who I am, the closest I imagine I will ever experience to this feeling is at work. If you have ever worked in hospitality, or even retail, you will know how it feels to be blamed for something that you have absolutely no control over. Things you are always expected to apologise for, that have absolutely nothing to do with you.

“This food doesn’t taste nice.” I’m sorry I didn’t cook it. “Well I had money on my card yesterday!”, “You used to accept these loyalty cards!”, “The prices have gone up!”, “It’s too expensive here!”, “This ice cream is overpriced!”, “Your prices are ridiculous!”, “I can’t afford to eat here!” I’m sorry, I didn’t make the prices. I don’t even know who did make the prices. I can’t change the prices. In fact, you know what, I agree with you that the ice cream is too expensive, but I don’t have any control over somebody else in a different position to me, somewhere else in the world, who decides to make the prices. I WOULDN’T PAY THOSE PRICES EITHER. I DON’T AGREE WITH INCREASING PRICES. I AM JUST AS APPALLED AS YOU ARE. I THINK IT SUCKS TOO. I HAVE THE SAME PRINCIPLES AS YOU DO. I AM JUST TRYING TO GET BY LIKE YOU ARE. I JUST FUCKING WORK HERE. Imagine that feeling you get, of grievance and frustration, of injustice. Times it by a million. Then times it by another million. Even then, it’s not even close to as damning because you can complain to a manager if you want to. You can quit that job if you have to. You can leave that company if you need to. You can’t just quit where you come from, or what you look like, or your religion.

Blame your flatmates, blame your horoscopes, blame the weather. Don’t blame nations, religions, innocent people who are being blamed every day for things that they didn’t do. Just blame the blamers, it wont effect them. They’re too busy blaming the Mexican’s anyway.

Pictured: Stop blaming victims (Photographer: Wolfram Burner via Flickr)

Stop blaming the refugees for the fact you can’t get a job, Steve. You haven’t got a job because you have four GCSE’s and you are a drug dealer.





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ADVICE 17 Editors: George Watkins Anwen Williams @GairRhyddAdv advice@gairrhydd.com gairrhydd.com/advice

Surviving that library all-nighter Elinor Craven

How to make it through the night


he night on which we pack our bags and head to the library with a plan to re-emerge at dawn is a sad night indeed, but even the most organised of students can’t always avoid the dreaded library allnighter. We smugly think we’ve got our workload under control, when all of a sudden, exams and deadlines are upon us in the blink of an eye. So, if you’re considering pulling an allnighter any time soon, here’s some advice to get you through the (literally) dark times. When you’re working, set yourself mini deadlines. Whether you’re writing an essay or studying for an exam, break your work up into digestible chunks, so it doesn’t seem so daunting. Take frequent breaks to wander around. There’ll be very

few people around the library besides you and the security guard, so don’t feel limited to walking. Maybe branch out into a bit of dancing if the mood takes you. Once you feel re-energised, go back to your desk and have a snack. Food will be your saviour during an all-nighter. At 3AM, when all you want to do is sleep, cry and/or burn your books, food becomes your best friend. Make a three course meal in advance if you must. Fats and proteins are the best foods for fuel, so stock up on nuts. Listening to music or podcasts keeps your mind alert and entertained, and filling the silence will also make the experience a bit less soul-destroying. For those of you who work better in silence, I applaud

you. Now onto what not to do during an all-nighter. Don’t get distracted by your phone. When you’re sleep deprived and ready for a distraction, the last thing you need is to fall into an abyss of memes and Instagram posts. Only use your phone for emergencies. For example, ring for help at the point where you’ve stopped caring about your education and have started wondering whether it’s possible to cry under water. When you reach this state, remember that it’s a bad idea to drink caffeine or sugary drinks. They’ll give you a fleeting energy boost but you’ll soon drop down to debilitating tiredness. Even though you’ll feel like napping, try not to. If you do nap, there’s

a chance that you’ll wake up at 9AM, lying on the desk with paper stuck to your face, unsure of who and where you are. Do not pull an all-nighter the night before an exam. Your brain needs time to process information, so staying up all night and sitting an exam straight away is pretty much pointless. Some students swear by spending a productive night in the library, but for most of us it’s a last resort. Sadly, all-nighters can’t always be avoided. The time will come when we need to prepare for the mammoth task of staying awake for 24 hours, which, unless alcohol is involved, is surprisingly difficult for students. So take your snacks, listen to your favourite music and once your work is done… sleep.

The last thing you need is to fall in an abyss of memes.

Pictured: Resources for your nighttime work (Source: Imseong Kang via Flickr)

Cooking from home

How to save money while waiting for the student loan

George Watkins


e’re approaching the troublesome time of term when the student loan is steadily vanishing like that dream of a first, and the next load doesn’t come through for another month or two. What do you do? It’s a dilemma, because you do really need to eat to survive, but it’s also expensive. Try getting creative with your food, and you could save a few extra pennies. Fizzy Drinks. Swap them out. Apart from being much healthier to

not drink them because of the sugar/ aspartame issues, it’s much cheaper to get rid of them. Instead, give cordial and fizzy/ soda water a go. You might just love it. Alcohol. It’s a pretty straightforward thing to say that alcohol is expensive. Really expensive. The task is picking what isn’t too expensive, whilst avoid the cheap stuff in a box that’ll make you go a little bit blind. Wine tends to be a killer in particular. It’s a big ask, but maybe see if there’s more sensible ways of

getting your tipple. Fruit and Veg. Your parents did tell you to not eat pizza every day, and to be honest, you’re realising that they were probably right. You’ve hit that stage when biting into an orange causes your gums to bleed from the scurvy, and you’re trying to eat healthy, but it’s costly, particularly when Tesco etc. are charging £2 for four apples. We’ve recommended Lidl before, and despite not deliberately advertising for them, you just won’t find

cheaper food like this anywhere else. Cook at home. Seriously. It’s so much cheaper. I know we all want a Domino’s every night. I want it too. It’s just slightly impossible to be able to afford it. Try to enjoy your food and make sure it’s stuff you take pleasure in cooking and eating. Pesto pasta is cheap and pretty easy to make. You can always dip into beans on toast if you have to. I know it’s hard. The loan won’t be away for long. Stay strong.

I know we all want a Domino’s every night.


The gym membership guide

George Watkins


All you need to know about joining a gym in Cardiff

or all of us, a moment comes when you decide that maybe a life of pizzas and sofas or sometimes the two together is not the healthiest and you resolve to start going to a gym. You’ll do it. You actually will go, you tell your housemates. Then you’re faced with a dilemna: what do you actually need to do to join one? In Cardiff, we’re slightly spoilt for choice. There’s four major ones within a 1.5 mile radius of the cam-

pus, if that: Maindy, easyGym, PureGym and the University gyms in Taly and at the bottom of the Union. Picking out of these depends on what you want to go for, and where you live. Where I live, for example, the University gym is the most accessible. Some people struggle with the thought of going somewhere they know they might meet people they know, Realistically, that’s going to be every gym you ever go to. by the rule

of Sod’s Law, you will meet everyone you’ve ever fancied on your course, not to mention everyone you have ever spoken to or even made eye contact with., Ignore this. It doesn’t matter that you’re going to look sweaty. You’re making a decision and a commitment to a healthier life, so just put your headphones in and pretend they aren’t there. The other major issue is fees and costs. Most will make you do an induction, to ensure you don’t

kill yourself on your first session, and some of these will cost money. There’s no commitment either to paying a full year’s membership. Because I know I’ll be busy in the week and only be able to go maybe once or twice, which wouldn’t be worth the full fee, I pay as I go. make sure you don’t dive in too deep. Pay what you can afford, and be realistic. You’re making a great change. Now make sure you actually commit to it.

12 reasons to exercise

Here’s that motivation you need to get you down to the gym

George Watkins


ou don’t want to go to the gym today. Here’s some motivation to get you out of bed. Sleep. You’ll drift off much easier and sleep deeper, feeling more refreshed the next day. Weight. You’ll burn calories and continue to burn them off long after you’ve left if you work out properly. Skin. You’ll be able to fight breakouts and reduce excess oil, flushing toxins and the like. Long-term health. You’ll be de-

creasing your chances of contracting conditions like diabetes or heart disease in the long run. Bad foods. You can almost justify that tub of Ben and Jerry’s or that six-pack of VKs Mental health. You’ll be able to manage stress and anxiety better. Excess adrenaline will be wiped away, and by tiring your muscles out you’re bound to feel much more relaxed. Mood. You’ll be able to fight or ward off depression- endorphins,

dopamine and other positive chemical will swill around your brain and help lift your mood. Laziness. You won’t feel guilty about not going tomorrow. What better excuse is there than to say you’ve already been? Housemates. Your housemates will stop teasing you about the cost of your membership- you might be able to start teasing them back about being lazy, but this is not actively encouraged.

Body confidence. You’re bound to feel more body confident as you achieve your goals. This varies from person to person but can really help you feel more positive. Boosting the brain. You might even stave off Alzheimer’s or other similar conditions- it can also help sharpen memory and aid concentration and focus. Productivity. You’ll get more done, and be more productive in the long run

What do you need to do to join one?

What better excuse is there than to say you’ve already been?

” Pictured: Mad gains (Photographer: Anwen Williams)

Skincare on a budget

How to keep your skin glowing without breaking the bank Sarah Harris


here are a number of factors that can make your skin a nightmare to deal with at University. The constant stress, the greasy take-away food you were supposed to swear off months ago and not to mention that fact that you’re probably now an alcoholic. It’s almost like university was invented to torture your skin. Here are a few little tips that help me keep my skin clean and looking fresh through the year. Drink plenty of water. It may seem obvious but many people seem to neglect the fact that hydration is key to keeping your skin healthy. Drinking the right amount of water helps with digestion, circulation and excretion. You need to bear in mind that your skin is 64% water so instead of buying that Diet Coke with your

meal deal next time, maybe carry around a bottle of water with you to not only keep you hydrated but also make sure your skin doesn’t get dry and flakey as the weather changes. Exfoliate your skin. I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve been discussing my skincare regimen with my friends and it always shocks me when people say they’ve never exfoliated. Exfoliating removes all the gross, dead skin cells on the outer layer of your skin and is essential AT LEAST once a week to keep your skin glowing and to ensure you don’t end up with dry patches. It’s also super easy to whip up your own natural, chemical free exfoliator at home that not only allows you to save a few pounds every month but also can be used all over your body (Tip - use this before shaving and after for su-

per, silky and shiny skin). Just mix together a few spoons of granulated sugar with coconut or olive oil and voila. Keep a routine. Having a skin care routine is important. People always underestimate the amount of care your skin actually needs. Along with exfoliating, you should also use a daily face wash to rid your skin of any dirt and also tone your skin to avoid pigmentation. I know it all seems like a lot of hassle but taking 5 minutes out of your day is worth it in the long term. If you want to add a little fun to the mix, you can add a quick facemask to your regimen. Not only does it make your skin that tiny bit softer, but it also calls for some fun pamper nights with your housemates and a lot of hilarious photo opportunities.

A secret weapon. Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soaps – This is my secret weapon and you all should be glad that I’m sharing it with you. If you’ve heard of Dr. Bronner you’ll know how fabulous his face wash is and how many uses it has. Supposedly it has over 30 uses from shampoo to dish washing liquid but I use it as a daily face wash, and since I started using the product 3 years ago I’ve seen a huge improvement in my skin! You can get the produce from TK Maxx for under a fiver, which is great value considering a bottle usually lasts you half a year. I know in the heat of coursework and exam preparation, a lot of people tend to neglect their skin but tend to your skin now in order to save you from stressing out last minute the morning of a house party!

It’s almost like university was invented to torture your skin.


Nailing that interview

Anwen Williams


How to prepare for an interview

o you’ve been chosen for an interview. Knowing that you’ve been chosen for an interview doesn’t always take the nerves away from that upcoming interview, but being extra prepared will. Here’s some pointers concerning the main things that you should cover in an interview. Do your research. In an interview you’re aiming to “sell” yourself to an employer - your abilities, your skills, your knowledge and your personality. The best way you can do this is through learning as much as you can about the employer’s organisation and the employer’s needs. It’s important to remember that the interview is not just for the employer to decide if they want to hire you, it’s also for you to decide whether you want to work for this organisation. Firstly, to find out what the employer needs, you can revisit the job information available. In the job

description you should be able to tell what the job entails, what skills, qualities and knowledge are required and what levels of commitment and initiative are required. Finding out about the employer is also an important way to figure this out. Find out what the company’s aims, size, turnover and their position in the industry. This will give you a better idea of what they’re looking for. The organisation will have all of the information about latest developments, news, aims and ethos accessible to the public. If you’re having trouble knowing where to start looking, start with their website. Another place you’ll find heaps of information is on business and social networking sites such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Be prepared. Once you know what they’re looking for, try to think of the questions they might ask you. Having examples of times that you’ve ‘solved a problem’ or ‘worked

as a part of a team’ will take a huge weight off your shoulders. Having an example ready for things they may be looking for (or things mentioned in the job description) will have you ready for the questions they’re going to ask, and will make you way more relaxed. It’s also a really great idea to make a list of all your strengths, and everything you’ve achieved. Not only will this make you recognise all the skills you have, if you give the list a read before the interview, you’ll feel that much more confident and capable. Another way you need to be prepared is to know exactly where you’re going and how you’re going to get there. Plan this out in advance so the only thing you have to do on the morning of your interview is get yourself there. You don’t want to come across any unexpected problems and end up being late. Before an interview I always tend to google maps the location, so I

know exactly where I’m going and how long it will take me. It makes a world of difference knowing where you’re going the morning of the interview, as you’re not worrying yourself sick about going the wrong way or running out of time. Get your glad rags on. Last but definitely not least is appearance. Apparently, initial impact is made within the first few seconds of an interview, and in terms of effective communication during the first few minutes - with clothes, gestures and posture holding 55% importance, tone of voice with 38% and message content 7%. This does not mean message content is not important, it just shows how important your appearance is on a first impression. It’s said that the four most important areas to pay attention to are eye contact, facial expression, posture and gestures. Try to look as clean clean as possible, relax and be confident. Good luck!

The interview is not just for the employer to decide if they want to hire you, it’s also for you to decide whether you want to work for this organisation.

Are you a third year student nurse?


Would you like help preparing for interviews?

he Skills Development Service is providing “Nailing The Competency-based Interview – techniques to enhance your performance”. The aim is to help you enhance

competence and confidence when applying for roles that will be assessed using a competency-based selection process. It’s always good to embrace any opportunities that come your way

- it might even make you more employable! Wednesdays 30 November and 7 December 2016, 2-4:30pm, Ty Dewi Sant Please note you must be a Nursing

student, ideally 3rd year, to apply for this session and you must be able to attend both sessions. Bookings at http://tinyurl.com/ jex6kjd Enquiries to sds@cf.ac.uk

Embrace your student status

Kirby Evans

If you can do things in groups, do it.


Making the most of your student discount

our Cardiff University student card will get you a host of deals, from £14 cut and blow dry at ‘Simon Constantinou hairdressers’ in Cathays, to £3 cinema tickets at Premier Cinema. NUS and other Cards. For a long time, the trusty NUS card has dominated the scene, if you get yourself an NUS extra card for £12 (or open a bank account with Lloyds or the Bank of Scotland, they’ll give you one for free) it’s definitely worth taking it out with you. Some of the highlights include: -10% off lots of high street brands eg. Topshop -Up to 25% off loads of Restaurants including Ask, Zizzi and pizza express (although check the t&c’s beforehand because they’re not valid every day) -On the topic of food, NUS or not, the slug and lettuce do half price everything all day Monday. Definitely worth it. -Other discount partners include student beans (35% off dominoes anyone?) and Uni Days (different offers every day, including 50% off Spotify premium) both of which are free to sign up for.

Voucher codes. Make sure when you buy anything on line you google ‘voucher codes for …’ just before you check out. 99% of the time, there is a code or a deal you can use to save yourself some cash. Morrison’s for example, offer a 10% student discount, and with the code VOU3780551 you’ve got another £7 off! Deals. If you like photos or just want to decorate your room, download the ‘snapfish’ app and you get free photo prints for a whole year! Sign up to amazon student and get prime for 6 months completely free. (ideal for Christmas) A sneaky loophole on your 16-25 rail card; order a new one a few weeks before your 24th birthday – if you get the 3 year one, you’re covered until you’re 27. Awesome. Advice. On a night out, you’ll notice people handing out wristbands or leaflets… take them! Some will get you free entry to a club, and others will give you a drinks discount. Before you go shopping next check out - Savethestudent.org - Vouchercodes.co.uk/student - Studentbeans.co.uk Finally, if you can do things in groups, DO IT. Simple things like do-

ing a wash with your flatmate saves you £2.60 a go. Bloody ‘Circuit’. Make the most of your student status while

you can, and you’ll be surprised at how many pennies you can save.

Pictured: Save those pennies (Source: Tax credits via Flickr.)



Editors: Adam George Ellise Nicholls @GairRhyddPol politics@gairrhydd.com gairrhydd.com/politics

The reality of the new President’s policies

Donald Trump promised to shake Washington up - but how far will he go? Conor Holohan

Trump claims that upon his entering office, 2-3 million illegal immigrants will be deported or incarcerated so that the ‘borders are secure’.

” Melissa Moore

The Wales Bill still leaves too much power with Westminster


ince Donald Trump won the American presidency, albeit by the grace of the Electoral College, some important questions have been answered regarding his actual positions on policy. Let’s start with the policy that any future appointments to the Supreme Court would have to be ‘pro-life’ and would have to defend the constitutional right to bear arms – Of course, nobody is going to win the presidency with an agenda of removing the constitutional right to bear arms, it really means defending the right to buy an assault rifle off the shelves at a local supermarket. These are standard red state policies, keeping the Bible Belt and other socially conservative areas voting Republican like they always have. The pro-life stance is concerning because outlawing various forms of abortion does not stop them from taking place, it just creates more stigma, makes it more dangerous by taking qualified doctors out of the equation and sends a message to the people that those who choose to abort a pregnancy are immoral and worthy of public shaming. Obamacare is something Donald Trump used against the Democrats in the lead up to the election, normally referring to it as a disaster. One of his biggest and most well-known policy positions was to repeal and replace Obamacare entirely. In a 60 Minutes interview, the future president was much less critical and said he would like to keep certain branches of Obamacare, specifically those which affect young children and those with long-

term conditions. Though this will be pleasant news to Democrats in America, it is also a massive policy shift and does raise ethical questions about the seeking of office. Another big shift of policy has centred on the fabled wall. Trump has assured his public the wall is still very much happening, but now we’ve learned that some of the wall will be a wall, and some of the wall will be fence. Granted, ‘We’re going to build a fence in some areas and a wall in others’, isn’t the most catchy policy position, but again it raises the question of whether President Trump is going to fulfil the promises on which he was elected. Many people have considered how realistic an idea it is to build a wall along the US-Mexico border. He has vowed to take immediate action in regards to a policy area that has probably been his most divisive and his most emphasised. Trump claims that upon his entering office, 2-3 million illegal immigrants will be deported or incarcerated so that the ‘borders are secure’. This is the change which America voted for in manifest. There has been an overwhelming response from critics who have said that the reason electee Clinton didn’t get elected is largely based on how America wants change. Despite the controversies, the accusations and the mistruths, this is what change looks like, and it’s the change America supposedly wants to see. Immediately after Donald Trump won the US Election, people were taking solace in the fact that the American governing process was slow and

practically impossible to pass legislation through. They pointed to Obama and his hands-tied administration. Trump’s party, however, holds a majority across both the house and the senate making it more realistic for him to be able to pass legislation. The argument was that Trump could never get his extreme policy ideas through Congress, but it looks

a lot like he won’t be trying to. Since the election, his demeanour has undeniably changed: there’s a lot less sensationalism and demagoguery in his words and his tone. The Donald Trump who suggested that Muslims should be stopped from entering the United States is not the same Donald Trump who will be inaugurated on the 20th of January.

Pictured: Ex-business man Donald Trump (photographer: Mike Segar via Routers)

Water powers devolved to Welsh Assembly


decision has been made to devolve new powers relating to water to the Welsh Government in a symbolic move to never allow another Tryweryn to happen again. Following a law passed in 1965 the village of Capel Celyn was flooded to create the Tryweryn reservoir that would provide Liverpool with water. Changes to who holds the power over water will be made on Tuesday when the House of Lords debate the Wales Bill. The Wales Bill, currently going through parliament, will see new powers devolved to Wales including energy, transport and elections. The decision to further devolve water is seen as a historical one. The Welsh Secretary, Alun Cairns, currently has powers to intervene on water related legislation, but this will be re-

placed by a legal agreement between the Welsh and the UK government. Cairns has said he will scrap his ability to block some of the laws made in Wales about water and has said that the decision puts to right the “long outstanding injustice” since the flooding of the Gwynedd village. The decision follows pressure from the Welsh Government and opposition politicians who believe the Wales Bill still leaves too much power with Westminster. Currently, a law passed by the Assembly could be blocked by UK ministers if it was believed that the law could have a critically negative effect on the water supply in England. The Welsh Government said it had called for the devolution of these powers “for some time”. So why is it so crucial that Westminster will no longer have the

power to block Welsh laws on water? Ministers have argued that current planning laws are likely to safeguard against a repeat of Tryweryn, however this indicates that Westminster are in the process of returning power back to Wales. The Wales Office said it was too early to say exactly when these changes would take place, but said there would be no cost to the taxpayer and no change in how customers in England and Wales receive their water. The debate in the House of Lords on Tuesday has been encouraged by the positive response of former Plaid Cymru leader Lord Wigley, who came up with his own amendments to try to nudge the UK government in this direction. The debate will be watched closely by UK and Welsh ministers to inspect further details of this amendment.

Pictured: Plaid Cymru’s Annual Conference 2015 (source: Plaid Cymru - The Party of Wales)


Seven Pakistani soldiers killed in Kashmir clash Sarah Harris

The attack was the deadliest attack on security forces in Kashmir in the last 20 years


Tensions soar after deadliest attack in two decades

he Kashmir conflict is a territorial conflict between India and Pakistan. The strife began after the partition of the countries is 1947, since which there have been 3 wars between the countries. In the current day, India owns 43% of the region whereas Pakistan claims 37% and the rest belongs to China. Last week, Indian shelling in the region reportedly killed seven Pakistani soldiers. The tragedy is said to be the Pakistani army’s biggest loss of life in over 10 years. Pakistani officials have gone on to say the attack was ‘unprovoked’ however; India blames Pakistan for starting the clash. Earlier this year, news of unrest in Kashmir made headlines as multiple violent protests occurred the Indian-administrated parts of Kashmir. This took place after the killing of a popular militant commander by Indian security forces. Curfews were imposed in all districts of Kashmir. The imposition caused anti-Indian protests and caused a number of attacks on security forces and public properties. Weeks after the protests, an Indian Army base in the Kashmiri town of Uri was attacked by 4 heavily armed terrorists, resulting in the death of 19 soldiers. The attack was the deadliest attack on security forces in Kashmir in the last 20

years. Figures by Al Jazeera showed that at least 87 civilians had been killed as a result of the protests. People have raised concern over the amount of innocent civilians who have lost their lives due to the strife between the Pakistani and Indian government. Since the conflict began, the United Nations have attempted to play a pivotal role in maintaining peace between the two countries and even established

the ‘United Nations Military Observer Group for India and Pakistan’ to monitor the actions by both countries. However, it is a known fact that both Pakistan and India have violated the 2003 truce that suggests the UN has hugely failed to maintain their role. Gair Rhydd contacted Abdul Basit, the Pakistani High Commissioner for India who exclusively told us: “A settlement in accordance with the aspirations

of the people of Jammu and Kashmir is essential for a viable peace in South Asia. “Unfortunately, India continues to prevaricate on its commitment to hold a plebiscite, and is denying Kashmiris their inalienable right to self-determination.” Mr Basit said it was essential for both sides to formalize the 2003 truce to end the ongoing rivalry and bring peace back to the region.

Pictured: Indian soldiers resuscitate fallen comrade (photographer: staff sgt. Crista Yazzie)

May promises change at Lord Mayor’s banquet Molly Ambler

Change is in the air. And when people demand change, it is the job of politcians to respond.


heresa May has made her speech at the Lord Mayor’s banquet, outlining her plans for the future of the UK, in particular her aims for foreign policy. She stated, “Change is in the air. And when people demand change, it is the job of politicians to respond” demonstrating her commitment to delivering Brexit for the people and making it clear once again that immigration is clearly a large concern of the people and it is her duty to deal with this concern. Among the distinguished guests Mrs May told leading business figures that she could see the government having a greater role in developing the industrial strategy of the UK that is aimed at spreading the wealth more evenly across the country. No one could have predicted the political earthquakes that have shook modern politics in recent month however in light of the latest tremble, the election of Donald Trump as President, Mrs May said, “To be the true global champion of free trade in this new modern world, we also need to do something to help those families and communities who can actually lose out from it. Not standing inflexibly, refusing to change and still fighting the battles of the past, but adapting to the moment, evolving our thinking and seizing the opportunities ahead.” Nigel Farage became the first British politician to meet Donald Trump

since his election victory, however Downing Street have made it clear that he will not play a pivotal role in UK-US relations. This distaste for Farage’s politics is echoed by Iain Duncan-Smith who stated that Farage was “just trying to get attention” rather than representing Britain’s interests. Mrs May’s spokeswoman told reporters the relationship between Mr Trump and the PM was “working well” following an initial phone call that was “very warm in tone.” Senior figures such as Sir Kim Darroch, British Ambassador to the US, have suggested that Trump would be “open to outside influence” and that “better relationships” with his team meant that Britain would be at an advantage. While others may be worried about the upcoming years of US politics, in the UK we have our own political turmoil to endure. Mrs May was adamant about delivering Brexit for the people, stating that leaving the EU demonstrated, “how a free, flexible, ambitious country can step up to a new global role.” With Nissan car manufacturing staying in the North East of England and the development of a global hub to repair and maintain fighter aircrafts in Wales is evidence of a competitive industrial strategy. However, other political figures have disagreed with Mrs May’s claims. The Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron has remarked, “Theresa May is trying to have her cake and

Pictured: Theresa May speaking at the Policy Exchange (source: El Gazette)

“ eat it. She talks about being probusiness but won’t offer the one thing business leaders needs most:

clarity on her plans for Britain’s future with Europe. She can’t have it both ways.”

Nigel Farage became the first British politician to meet Donald Trump since his election victory.


Virgin wins contract to run 200 NHS services Marie-Claire Alfonso

Nearly 3,000 local residents protested the contract via a petition by the campaign group 38 Degrees.

Anna Dutton

Brexit puts France in a difficult position and French voters have been left frustrated with the result.


ir Richard Branson’s health firm, Virgin Care, has won a £700m contract to deliver 200 types of NHS and social care services to more than 200,000 people in Bath and north-east Somerset. Despite protests and opposition from locals, a 7-year contract with the for-profit organisation, which will deliver the council’s social care programme for adults and children, was approved on Thursday the 10th of November. Services will be transferred to Virgin Care from 1 April 2017. A spokesman for Virgin Care said “We are really pleased to have been chosen by the council and CCG to deliver more joined-up care for people across Bath and north-east Somerset. “We have a strong track record over the last decade of overseeing integration and improvement of NHS services across England and we’re looking forward to working with the many outstanding professionals, and a range of great partners, to provide and oversee high quality, easy-to-navigate services which are shaped by the people who use them.” Opposition for the contract came from new fears about private


health firms expanding their role in the provision of publicly funded health services. Paul Evans, coordinator of the NHS Support Federation, has said that “The experience so far from NHS outsourcing is that companies struggle to deliver the level of service that patients need and make a profit”. Critics have deemed Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt as having an agenda to privatise the NHS. Before being made Health Secretary, Hunt co-authored a book calling for the NHS “to be replaced by a new system of health provision in which people would pay money into personal health accounts, which they could then use to shop around for care from public and private providers.” By using austerity cuts to justify the move to let Virgin Care provide social care services due to the lack of funding the NHS needs to function is considered to be supportive of the idea that these are motivated by a conscious effort towards privatisation and the overall replacement of the NHS by Jeremy Hunt. Jonathan Ashworth MP, Labour’s Shadow Health Secretary, said “Under the Tories, hospitals are

facing financial crisis while patient care suffers yet all the Tories offer is further cuts and outsourcing to private companies like Virgin”. However, Cllr Vic Pritchard, the cabinet member of adult social care and health, said “This decision marks the beginning of an exciting new chapter in the integration of health and care services in Bath and North East Somerset. Local people can look forward to a more joined up and personalised service in the future with the focus firmly on prevention and supporting people to maintain their independence.” Lewis Carson, the Unison organiser for the area, said: “We’re fighting to oppose the contract. We have concerns about what this means for staff conditions and service delivery. From past experience we know staff terms and conditions can be targeted for savings.” Nearly 3,000 local residents protested the contract via a petition by the campaign group 38 Degrees. The authors of the petition – “Don’t let Virgin take over our community health service” – claimed that if the contract was awarded to Virgin “it will contribute to the rapidly advancing privatisation of the NHS”.

Calais border closure sparks dispute

rench officials have stated that they will close the UK Border Post in Calais. Arnaud Danjean, a close ally of the French election frontrunner, Alain Juppe, has said that Brexit puts France in a difficult position and French voters have been left frustrated with the result. The closure of the Calais jungle earlier this month came as a result of the French government feeling burdened by the continuous influx of migrants. This has placed strain on resources and security. Tensions between UK and French officials has been high for some time, hindering future relations as both countries are likely to remain at odds with one another because Downing Street have insisted that the UK Border post will remain open. Juppe’s views resonated with the French electorate and were epitomised by Mr Danjean in an interview with BBC Radio 4 “…we will have to find a new agreement” as the outcome is “…an uncomfortable consequence for Britain.” This statement reiterates how the future is already less favourable toward Anglo-French relations and disregards the more hopeful outlook of Westminster. It shows how the French are inclined to be less lenient in their stance towards immigration as a result of Brexit. Although the suggestion has had a positive reaction from French voters, the implication goes against the 2003 Le Touquet Treaty. This treaty outlined the details for the UK and French border controls and should not be affected by the UK leaving the EU.

Pictured: Above, protest banners outside a hospital (photographer: Tanya Hart); left, migrants climb under barbed wire (photographer: Gémes Sándor)

The 2003 Le Touquet treaty was signed by Tony Blair and Jacques Chirac and meant that British immigration controls could check passports in Calais with French border controls doing the same at Dover. It is believed to minimise the rate of illegal immigration. However it has been put under serious strain in recent years due to increasing numbers of immigrants arriving in Calais with the intention of going on to Britain. This agreement differs to EU regulations because the legislation was

between two countries and therefore is not an enforceable law on all EU member countries. The British Government wish to maintain this law but this could prove more difficult due to the French Government’s change of attitude post Brexit. This change in attitude is due to vast numbers of immigrants entering the country creating challenges for the country. There have been food shortages, a lack of medical care for a number of refugees, and

living conditions have not always been at sufficient standards. There have been several deaths from migrants trying to cross the channel illegally, reflecting badly on French and British officials. Despite the result of Brexit and subsequent change in French attitudes, the Calais crisis is unlikely to be resolved by an alteration in border control. The violence, starvation and oppression that forced refugees to flee their homes in the first place has still not been addressed.

There have been several deaths from migrants trying to cross the channel illegally.



Editors: Tanya Harrington Kat Pooprasert @GairRhyddSci science@gairrhydd.com gairrhydd.com/science

Poor diet in pregnancy, poor heart health for infants Lucy Corber

Children born to mothers who ate more fruit scored higher on IQ tests


new study of baboons has revealed that the fewer calories mothers ate during pregnancy was directly correlated with the off-springs heart health. Peter Nathanielsz states, “We pass more biological milestones during development than we will ever pass in our entire lives”, and during these nine months, extreme calorie intakewhether to few or too many- can have lifelong effects on new-born weight, metabolism and chronic health problems. A landmark epide-

miological study investigated births during the Dutch Hunger Winter during WWII, and found increased risk of heart disease, as well as other health issues, sometimes affecting two generations, indicating that nutrition while in the womb does have an effect on us in later life. The role of cultural, environmental factors are difficult to account for in studies of human populations. For this reason, 32 pregnant baboons were used in this study, as they are close genetic relations of

this is validated through multiple species, it shows you you’re looking at fundamentally conserved mechanism”. She believes the next step is to determine if there is a window in childhood for intervention with better diet and exercise, to make up for lack of in-utero nutrition. A study published by the University of Alberta in May of this year, drew similar conclusions about the link between diet and new-born heath. It investigated the effects of increased fruit in pregnant women’s diets, and the effect this had on the cognitive development of the newborn. Children born to mothers who ate more fruit scored higher on IQ tests, in comparison to children whose mothers ate a reduced amount of fruit during pregnancy. The amount of fruit the child ate within its first year, had no effect on IQ tests. These studies are making the case that diet is a crucial factor in a child’s development while inside the womb. The attention on maternal nutrition is largely due to obesity epidemic. The US Department of Agriculture estimates that 13% of households reported uncertainties about the cost of food. Regarding these issues, Nathanielsz concluded, “It would be sad if we discounted this problem.”

Pictured: Diet can have a tremendous impact on the baby. (Photographer: Michael Foox)

The red squirrel simply cannot catch a break

Lizzie Harrett

The bacteria could have been doing the rounds in red squirrels for hundreds of years

humans but external factors are somewhat easier to control. 16 pregnant baboons were fed their normal amount of food, and the other 16 were fed a moderate 30% less, but all other living conditions were kept the same. Infants of the underfed were born significantly smaller, but caught up to the weight of the babies of the well fed mothers by young adulthood. However, researchers reported that the offspring of the underfed mothers had an abnormally shaped heart muscle. A healthy heart is usually an upside down pyramid, but the offspring of the under fed mother’s hearts had rounded and less muscular hearts, which were 20% less effective in pumping blood. These hearts also appeared to age faster, by aged 5 (aged 25 in human years), many of their heart functions were more similar to those of primates 3 times as old. Susan Ozanne, a developmental endocrinologist at the University of Cambridge, suggests that experiments such as these, can determine cause and effect- something not easily determined in human studies. She suggests “maternal diet has an effect on a child’s cardiac health long-term. Studies in rodents have produced similar findings, but when


he poor red squirrel can’t catch a break. Its American rival, the grey squirrel, has encroached upon much of it’s territory, with deforestation in the UK also majorly affecting its habitat. Now, new research adds to its list of woes and makes 2016 a bad year for both squirrels and humans alike, with a report finding that the

bushy tailed rodents have tested positive for bacteria-causing leprosy. Leprosy is a painful disease that causes the visual disfigurement of those infected. However, it is not generally thought-of as a disease that infects non-human animals. It has affected humanity for thousands of years, with individuals

diagnosed in the past often tragically placed in leper colonies. Over 189,000 people worldwide had chronic leprosy in 2012, with half of these cases being in India. Fortunately, leprosy is curable with a multidrug antibiotic treatment and has not been evident in the UK for centuries, although around 200 cases are reported per year in the United States. It was thought until recently that leprosy could only be transferred between humans, although previous research from the same team found evidence of leprosy in armadillos located in the United States. This new research further disproves this past assumption. “It goes to show that once a disease has become extinct in humans, it could still exist in the environment if there was a suitable reservoir,” says study co-author Stewart Cole, director of the Global Health Institute at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne. The team analysed 110 red squirrel carcasses from across the the UK, with these split between visibly sick and not. Of the 97 seemingly healthy rodents, 21 tested positive and all 13 notice-

ably unwell squirrels had indicators of leprosy. Those who were sick had symptoms similar to those found in humans: skin lesions and patchy fur. Interestingly, the strain found in some of the squirrels was similar to the one present in medieval England, which implies that the bacteria could have been doing the rounds in red squirrels for hundreds of years with little change. “One of the things we’ve never really understood about leprosy is how it can persist in populations at such low prevalence for such long periods of time,” says Richard Truman, a microbiologist at the National Hansen’s Disease Program who wasn’t involved with the work. The knowledge that leprosy bacteria remains in various animal populations could help reason why the disease has had sticking power in humans. But you need not panic if you catch sight of fluffy-tailed rodent in your local park. Over 95 per cent of the population have a natural immunity to leprosy, and it is relatively non-contagious. Further to this and as previously stated, a course of antibiotics easily clears up the infection.

Pictured: Plotting revenge (Photographer: Richard Carter)


Mars Beagle a “near success” Joshua Green

We succeeded in so many elements. It is a great pity the communications didn’t work.

Anna Dutton

This tragic reality shows that more research needs to be done.


Outer-space underdog proves the haters wrong

he year was 2003. The Iraq war commenced, the Concorde maked its final flights, Arnold Schwarzenegger was elected to office as Governor of California and the Beagle 2 was making its decent to the barren surface of Mars. Beagle 2 was the name of the lander of which was a British project led by Professor Colin Pillinger (launched by the European Space Agency) that sought to see whether there was life on Mars. The lander was meant to make contact with the surface of Mars on the 25th of December, however, no contact was made with Beagle 2. On the 6th of February 2004 the Beagle 2 was declared lost and the mission deemed a failure. The year is now 2016 and has been perhaps not a great year for many. If, however, you are just a fan of space exploration, or you will take any silver lining, then there is some consolidation over the fate of Beagle 2. New analysis of Beagle 2 images suggest that not only did the lander land successfully on the surface of Mars but also that it was partially operational months after the landing. In 2005 Beagle 2 was found to be ‘intact’ on the surface of Mars via images from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Professor Mark Sims, from the University of Leicester, commissioned

a survey into the ultimate fate of the lander and found that not only did the Beagle 2 land but that it deployed three of it’s four solar panels and potentially was able to collect data. The analysis conducted involved simulating possible outcomes for the lander. The technique simulated the outcomes by working out the possible landing configurations, on the surface of Mars. Then by using the images taken by NASA’s orbiter the sunlight the reflected off the lander was used to work out the ideal model of what occurred. It was determined by this technique that three out of four of the solar panels were open and that, possibly, the fourth panel blocked communication kit used to beam back information that the lander had gathered. Dr Manish Patel, who was one of the many scientists who worked on the Beagle 2 project, agrees with this analysis along with UCL’s Mullard Space Science Laboratory’s Professor Jan-Peter Muller who was not associated with the Beagle 2 mission. People have commented on the somewhat closure that these findings bring. Professor Sims said to the BBC that “we succeeded in so many elements. It is a great pity the communications didn’t work and we didn’t get the science back.” Patel added that he was “incredibly frustrated”

Pictured: The red planet (Photographer: Kevin Gill).

but “incredibly proud” and gave some heartwarming words about how “in every failure there is a success hidden somewhere that teaches us and motivates us. This is a perfect example.”

Wise words to give for space exploration missions many would say; exploring the final frontier fails at times but motivation drives us further into the exciting unknown.

Dementia now a leading cause of death


ementia has now overtaken heart disease as a leading cause of death in the UK. Cancer is still overall the biggest cause of death, but as a result of an ageing population, cases of Dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, have increased. The cause of Dementia is still unclear and currently being researched, but these recent results are alarming; no-one who has been diagnosed with the disease has survived. Dementia killed more than 61,000 people last year- this made up 11.6% of all recorded deaths. Despite Doctors being better equipped to diagnose the early signs of Dementia, the intricacies and complications of the disease are still largely unknown. Current research understands Alzheimer’s to be the most common cause of Dementia and affects different people in varying ways. Bain cells are surrounded by an abnormal protein which disrupts the internal structure of the cell, the chemical connections between each cell are consequently damaged and some cells even die. This causes dementia which can result in memory loss and in severe cases, a person is unable to do everyday tasks. Symptoms of dementia vary depending on which part of the brain is disrupted. But, the disease has been identified as having these common symptoms: the day-to-day memory

Illness overtakes heart disease as a top killer of individuals is weakened; planning and concentrating tasks are more difficult; use of language is restricted and orientation is hindered. Suffering from the disease is a difficult experience, and it also has a huge impact on those close to the affected individual. Linda Trueman from Hertfordshire who is 67 lost her mother, father and grandfather to dementia. She notes how ‘there’s been a big change in knowledge and expertise’ but that ‘it’s still a condition that everyone is frightened of.’ Linda’s remarks highlight how Dementia, despite becoming more of discussed topic, is still often regarded as a taboo subject. Despite a lack of complete knowledge about Dementia, the unmentionable atmosphere surrounding the disease is too common for a modern-day society. Alzheimer’s is the biggest killer in women but for men it is still heart disease. Despite this difference, Hilary Evans who works for Alzheimer’s Research UK, notes that the ONS statistics show how currently ‘no-one survives a diagnosis of dementia.’ This tragic reality shows that more research needs to be done as Alzheimer’s is not simply ‘an inevitable part of an ageing.’ There are currently 850,000 people in the UK that suffer from Dementia and Martin Kane of the Alzheimer’s Society stated that finding a cure would

Pictured: Our brains become more susceptible to dementia as we age. (Photographer: Michael Huang).

‘remain high on the agenda’ to help those who are current sufferers and offer better support for future generations. Dementia is an extremely difficult disease to live with, and it is often even trickier to support someone who is suffering. Many more people

are being diagnosed with the disease every day and it is necessary for research to continue so that a cure is found. Hopefully, in the future, Dementia will be a less frightening disease, and instead of having the highest death rate, it will have the highest survival rate.


Joshua Lee

The high temperatures we saw in 2015 are set to be beaten in 2016.


Year 2016 highest temperature on record

t is very likely that 2016 is on track to be the hottest year on record, with temperatures even hotter than the record-breaking temperatures recorded in 2015, according to a report from the World Metrological Association (WMO). Average global temperatures this year were 1.2° Celsius above pre-industrial levels, meaning that 16 of the 17 hottest years on record have occurred within the current century. Scientists warned that rising global temperatures and climate change would result in extreme weather events, such as hurricanes, occurring more often and with greater intensity. Scientists also noted that the concentration of major greenhouse gases in the atmosphere had increased to new highs. Monitoring stations on Mauna Loa recorded a carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere of 407.7 parts per million in May this year, the highest ever recorded. The report, delivered as a part of the COP22 United Nations Climate Change conference taking place in Morocco, also found that the amount of Artic sea ice that melted during the summer period this year was well above-average. Levels of sea ice were also significantly below normal levels throughout the year, with the level of

summer ice in the Artic was the second lowest on record after 2012. “Another year. Another record. The high temperatures we saw in 2015 are set to be beaten in 2016,” said Petteri Taalas, Secretary General of the WMO: “In parts of Arctic Russia, temperatures were 6°C to 7°C above the long-term average. […] We are used to measuring temperature records in fractions of a degree, and so this is different.” Mr Taalas added: “Because of climate change, the occurrence and impact of extreme events has risen. ‘Once in a generation’ heatwaves and flooding are becoming more regular. Sea level rise has increased exposure to storm surges associated with tropical cyclones.” 2016 has already seen a number of extreme weather events, causing serious humanitarian disasters. The most significant, Hurricane Matthew, caused hundreds of deaths and injuries in the Caribbean. Many other serious and record-breaking floods, droughts and heatwaves were also recorded around the world. The report cited that out of 79 published studies on climate between 2011 and 2014, more than half found that manmade climate change was contributing to extreme weather events.

Pictured: 2016 is predicted to be the hottest year yet (Photographer: Mikael Miettinen)

The WMO warned that rising temperatures could also put serious pressure on the environment and have serious humanitarian consequences. In 2015, around 19.2 million people were displaced due to weather, water, climate or geographical dangers. Ocean temperatures were also higher this year. The rise in temperatures has been blamed for a disruption in the marine ecosystems and significant coral bleaching, particularly in the

Pacific Ocean. Coral death rates were nearly 50% in parts of the Great Barrier Reef. Meteorologists noted that the El Niño weather phenomenon contributed to higher temperatures during the first months of the news, worsening extreme weather events and increasing ocean temperatures. Although the additional heat from this year’s El Niño may have already dissipated, Mr Taalas warned that: “The heat from global warming will continue.”

Neurotechnology unlocks locked-in patient

Lucy Sullivan

Pictured: New research can potentially help patients with locked in syndrome and paralysis communicate with others. (Photographer: Marc Wathieu)


The brain implantable prototype undoubtedly provides the substance of freedom for paralysis sufferers, a form of free speech.

or paralysis victims, communicative mobility is greatly restricted. However, the first home-use brain implant has enabled a paralysed woman to communicate exclusively through thought. This brain-computer-interface does not require operation from engineers or doctors. The patient is independently in control of the function. Essentially, this process involves electrodes that are positioned beneath the skull, at the surface of the brain. Signals are then emitted via a wire to a device implanted in the chest of the patient. Consequently, wireless signals are sent from the chest device to an outside computer tablet. This tablet transforms these electrode signals into a ‘click.’ A preliminary trial was recently conducted on Ms De Bruijne, a victim of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) a form of mo-

tor neuron disease. She learned to mitigate the device by playing computer games such as whacka-mole. Eventually, she could manoeuvre the device by imagining moving her hand to trigger a click. Various software’s installed on the tablet meant she could then use the click to access other functions, such as a computer speller to produce words. Ms De Bruijne could produce a signal successfully on the first day of the trial. Six months later, she attained a 95% control accuracy. In an interview with ‘New Scientist’ Nick Ramsey at the Brain Center of University Medical Center Utrecht in the Netherlands said “The system really works. It surprised us.” Currently, the devices’ communicative output duration is slow- multiple minutes must pass prior to word formation. Initially, 50 seconds passed before letter

selection, however with training the patient reduced this to 20. Encouragingly, expected technological advancements should permit the next volunteer to navigate the device much faster. Assets of this future upgrade include predictive text, to maximise communicative efficiency. Additional benefits of the device include that it is less invasive than traditional deep brain stimulation, a Parkinson’s disease treatment. Conversely, it is more intrusive than external methods such as an EEG Cap but considered more effective. Prior to the new interface, the patient relied on an eye tracker to communicate basically. This device was dependant on daylight, which is variable and therefore unreliable. Moreover, devastatingly, one in three people who suffer from ALS lose their eye sight. For ALS victims, a sight reliant device is simply not practical.

Since being fitted with the new device Bruijne informed ‘New scientist’ reporters that she is “more confident and independent now outside.” Quintessentially, the new implantable prototype has both advantages and disadvantages. Its intermediate level of invasiveness reduces bodily stress for patients. Pleasingly to potential candidates, it is also less visible. Furthermore Ramsey rendered the device “affordable” and “simple.” Unfortunately, this accounts for the issue that complex tasks cannot be performed with the device. For example, controlling robotic limbs. Ramsey told the ‘New Scientist’ that “There’s a limit to the amount of information you can get.” Regardless, the brain implantable prototype undoubtedly provides the substance of freedom for paralysis sufferers, a form of free speech.



Editors: Aletheia Nutt Tom Morris

Milly’s Note: This week we will be awarding new Tiers to all Societies!

Milly Dyer

Eleanor Philpotts

They’l be dropping some well-known heroes, and reminding you that joining the register is what it takes for you to be counted among them

” Pictured: Cardiff Marrow team and an Anthony Nolan Spit test.


ello! Last week lots of our Faith Based Societies were involved in Interfaith Week. I attended the Question Time event on Tuesday & it was great to have such an open discussion about faith at University. This week we have the first set of Society Development Meetings where we will be awarding new


Tiers to all Societies! We also have nominations open for the December Society of the Month! Make sure you enjoy the rest of your term before Christmas – there are loads of Society events being organised for the end of term so make sure you get involved! As always I am here to answer any Society related queries you have! Just send me a message or an email!

Cardiff Marrow: Hero Week

ardiff Marrow can often be found around uni, signing up eager students to potentially donate stem cells under parent charity Anthony Nolan’s register, but now they’re busier than ever as they mark Hero Week (Monday 21st-Friday 25th November.) This sees the whole Marrow community – they’re a society found in over 40 unis across the country – recruiting as many could-be lifesavers as possible; fundraising; spreading the word about blood cancer and stem cell transplants; and debunking the myths that can sadly put people off getting involved. They’ll be namedropping some well-known heroes, and reminding you that joining the register is what it takes for you to be counted among them... Blood cancer covers leukaemia, lymphoma and MDS, and is one of the most common types diagnosed in young people. Many patients require transplants – stem-cells (sometimes referred to as bone marrow) are infused into the body, replacing unhealthy cells and hopefully curing the cancer. Often, these transplants are a last resort and the patient’s only chance of survival. However, finding matches can be difficult. Although 90% of transplants are via Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Donation, in which cells are removed from the donor in a manner similar to giving blood, it’s much more specific than blood donation, meaning sometimes not even siblings are matches. This is why Marrow and Anthony Nolan are so passionate in widening the register, so there’s more chance of reaching someone’s 10/10 match. To join Anthony Nolan’s register, the only criteria is to be aged 16-30, weigh over 7st 12lbs, and be gen-

erally healthy. If you spot Cardiff Marrow around campus, say hi – it takes just 15 minutes to fill out the form and spit in a tube. Your saliva sample goes off to the main database, then in the rare event of being a seriously ill patient’s match, you’ll undergo a few non-invasive tests then if everything’s looking dandy, donate, probably by Peripheral Stem Cell Donation as aforementioned, or, in 10% of cases, by bone marrow donation under general anaesthetic. Most donors are home within a couple of days, experience very few side-effects, and praise how simple yet rewarding giving someone another chance of life was. Marrow, who recruit over a quarter of all Anthony Nolan donors, are particularly keen to recruit students, as the younger the donor the healthier the stem cells tend to be; men and those from ethnic minorities, as they’re underrepresented; and gay men, as there’s a misconception that they’re ineligible. Cardiff Marrow have a range of events coming up, from fundraising at Ikea; a clinic at the Catholic Chaplaincy, 12-4 on Wednesday 23rd November; and festive carolling on Queen Street in December. We’re also looking for volunteers – I gain so much from being Media Coordinator. As a blood cancer survivor myself, I can see how much hope Marrow offers to those diagnosed with the same illness, and there’s a real sense of both community and achievement which is why I’d recommend getting involved! If you’d like to find out more about joining the register, society or both, drop us a line at facebook.com/ marrowcardiff, twitter.com/cardiffmarrow or Cardiff@ukmarrow.org and make this Hero Week one to remember.

@GairRhyddSoc societies@gairrhydd.com gairrhydd.com/societies


Volunteering Announcement: Jailbreak ‘17 earlybird tickets available!

Kelly Marlow


n March 3rd - 5th 2017 Cardiff Volunteering host Jailbreak 2017 and after the success of Jailbreak 2016 the Cardiff Volunteering team can’t wait for it to all kick off again! Last year we had 15 teams race to get out of the country as fast as they could, with 52 hours to get as far away from Cardiff as possible without spending any of their own money on transport. Whilst on their travels, students completed a number of challenges which ranged from best jump photo, to giving flowers to a stranger, to bringing back the tackiest souvenir. One of our favourites

was assigning every team a (raw) egg and challenging them to keep it intact for the whole weekend, sending us photos of their egg on its journey! Every team raised money for Cardiff Volunteering, the SU’s in house independent charity, which meant we could put money towards starting more Cardiff Volunteering projects and helping more people for this academic year! Last year our teams did an incredible job, reaching everywhere from England, Ireland and Scotland (they all made it out of Wales!) to Spain, Germany, Holland and Belgium. Teams blagged everything including

flights, hotel rooms and even drinks at the bar! Last year’s winning team made is to Istanbul, setting a new Cardiff record. Think you can beat them? Get involved early bird tick-

ets are now on sale for a limited time! If traveling on a zero budget isn’t your thing we also have a Jailbreak HQ! In Jailbreak HQ, for the whole 52 hours, Volunteering staff and student volunteers take shifts to man the maps, text service and twitter pages to keep tabs on the teams throughout their journeys, helping to keep the teams safe. Stories flood in over the weekend, which last year including a team being stuck in Newport, getting picked up by the Police and cars breaking down! If you’re interested in volunteering at Jailbreak HQ then send us an email (Volunteering@Cardiff.ac.uk) to show your interest and we’ll get back to you closer to the date. If you’re interested in getting a team together and taking part in Jailbreak 2017 visit the Cardiff Volunteering webpages on the Students’ Union website to buy your tickets, or find us in the Events pages. What are you waiting for!?

Spotlight: Act One does Hardcore 24 Tom Morris

On Friday 11th, the Act One drama society got together at the Students Union to begin a 24-hour challenge which would see many of them forego sleep until the Saturday night. They had to devise a semiimprovised short play which they would be performing for charity at 7pm Saturday. Throughout the 24 hours of sleep deprivation, they covered character work, improvisation and various other activites that led to the creation of a humorous half-hour long play featuring four characters, some chairs, and some cold Domino’s pizza. James Cole-Ezen, Act One’s president, remarked that “illness

knocked our participation down by around half ” but this led to the formation of a “smaller group” that “formed a tighter bond over the 24 hours.” Meanwhile, Sam Walker, the vice president, related his own experiences: “Allowing an hour’s nap was the worst thing I could have possibly done - the following 3-4 hours were characterised by heavy eyes and a distinct lack of movement. But after that we managed to power through with the assistance of coffee.” The finished play featured a story involving a camp counsellor, played by Daniel Neenan (also seen doing stand-up at the Comedy Society) interviewing three girls about exactly what happened the night before-

the implication I gathered being there had been drugs involved, but the girls mainly seem to talk about food or their fictional boyfriends. They were played by Poppy Charlton, Louise Taillandier and Megan Thomas. Act One is one of the best known societies in the Guild, featuring some of the brightest young talent Cardiff has to offer. They’re back after an incredibly successful year where they even took a show to the Edinburgh Fringe. They will be putting on further shows later in the year but until then you can keep in touch via their social media: on Facebook at ActOneDramaSociety and Twitter @actonecardiff.

Crossword Answers Tom Morris


ere are the answer’s to last week’s crossword. Hope you enjoyed it and congratulations to anyone who got them all right- including Milly!

Across 1. CUBS 3. London 7. Labour 9. Coppafeel 11. Revision 12. SAWSA 14. Funky 15. Diff

Down 1. Chaos 2. Metal 4. Debating 5. Philosophy 6. Gold 8. Airsoft 10. Free 13. Guild

Pictured: Jailbreak 2017 logo., last year’s Jailbreak participants



Golygyddion: Osian Wyn Morgan Liam Ketcher @Taf_od tafod@gairrhydd.com gairrhydd.com/tafod

Y camau nesaf i garfan Cymru

Steffan Rhys Davies

Gwen Goodridge

Pwrpas y gerdd oedd adnabod trymder colled milwyr yn y Rhyfel Byd Cyntaf.


awdd gweld nad yw Cymru wedi cyrraedd disgwyliadau’r cefnogwyr yn y gemau diwethaf, gyda nifer o bobl yn rhoi’r bai ar steil chwarae Warren Gatland. Credaf fod y tîm wedi colli’r sbarc a’r angerdd a ddangoson nhw yn ystod Cwpan y Byd llynedd. Byddai llawer o bobl yn cytuno nad ydynt yn cynnig llawer o safon wrth ymosod. Mae’n amlwg nad oes gan y chwaraewyr lawer o hyder ar hyn o bryd, gyda nifer o bobl yn beirniadu eu perfformiadau diweddar. Dyma un o’r rhesymau nad yw’r chwaraewyr yn cymryd risgiau ac yn ceisio chwarae rygbi cyffrous, yn fy marn i.


Fel arfer, mae amddiffyn y tîm yn rhywbeth i’w ganmol. Ond yn ddiweddar credaf fod y tîm wedi colli’r gallu i ganolbwyntio wrth amddiffyn. Gwelir hyn gyda chwpwl o geisiai Awstralia a’r Ariannin yn erbyn y tîm cenedlaethol. Er hyn, yn gyffredinol roedd yr amddiffyn yn well yn yr ail gêm, o bosib oherwydd y siom yn eu perfformiad cyntaf. Rhaid hefyd cofio ansawdd rhai chwaraewyr allweddol a ychwanegwyd i’r tîm yn yr ail gêm, megis Sam Warburton ac Alun Wyn Jones. Heb os, roedd perfformiad Cymru’n wael yn y gêm gyntaf, ond rhaid cofio hefyd fod ansawdd chwarae Awstralia yn wefreiddiol ar adegau, gyda medrau penderfynu a

gweithredu eu chwaraewyr yn wych. Er nad oedd perfformiad Cymru yn wych yn erbyn yr Ariannin, rhaid cofio bod buddugoliaeth yn erbyn unrhyw un o dimau hemisffer y de yn fuddugoliaeth dda iawn. Hefyd, mae’r ffaith bod Cymru’n gallu ennill heb berfformio i’r gorau y gallant yn sicr yn bositif. Nid yw’r anafiadau i chwaraewyr mawr fel Rhys Webb, Taulupe Faletau a Hallam Amos wedi helpu’r sefyllfa chwaith. Wedi dweud hyn, nid yw’r gemau wedi bod yn hollol negatif. Rydym ni wedi gweld perfformiadau cadarnhaol, da gan chwaraewyr fel Ross Moriarty, Liam Williams ac Alun Wyn Jones dros y ddwy gêm ddiwethaf. Yr her nawr

yw i bob chwaraewr godi ei safon yn y gemau nesaf. Mae yna lawer o bethau angen gwella erbyn y gemau nesaf. Rhaid torri nifer o gamgymeriadau allan o’u gêm a chwarae gyda hyder a brwdfrydedd. Credaf y dylai Howley newid y tîm ychydig. Rhywbeth da fyddai rhoi cyfle i chwaraewyr ifanc fel Sam Davies a Keelan Giles er mwyn rhoi blas o’r llwyfan cenedlaethol iddynt. Credaf y byddai chwaraewyr ifanc fel Davies a Giles yn rhoi egni a chyffro i’r tîm yn ogystal ag wynebau ffres. Gobeithiaf y bydd y tîm yn codi’u gêm yng ngemau olaf cyfres yr Hydref!

Mae yna lawer o bethau angen gwella erbyn y gemau nesaf.

Tafluniad ‘Terasau’ ar dŵr ‘Big Ben’

leni, mae Sul y Cofio yn achlysur mwy teimladwy na’r arfer gan ei bod yn nodi canmlwyddiant ers un o frwydron mwyaf gwaedlyd y Rhyfel Byd Cyntaf, Brwydr y Somme. I gofio eleni, fe dafluniwyd cerddi holl Brifeirdd y Deyrnas Unedig ymysg darlun o’r pabi coch ar dŵr Elizabeth yn Llundain. Cynrychiolydd y Cymry oedd y prifardd Ifor ap Glyn a’i gerdd ‘Terasau’, a gafodd ei anrhydeddu wrth ochr y gerdd ‘Dulce et decorum est’, gwaith nodedig Wilfred Owen. Dangoswyd y gerdd yn ddwyieithog ar ochr yr adeilad adnabyddus. Mewn cyfweliad i drafod y coffa, dywedodd Ifor ap Glyn ei ysbrydoliaeth ar gyfer y gerdd oedd ei ymweliad diweddar i fynwentydd ger tir y Somme. Dywedodd wrth y cyfwelydd mai pwrpas y gerdd oedd adnabod trymder colled milwyr yn y Rhyfel Byd Cyntaf ac yr amhosibilrwydd i ni nabod pob un milwr a fu’n gorwedd

wrth ei draed, hyd yn oed mewn cyfnod lle bo hanesyddiaeth am y Rhyfel Byd Cyntaf yn ddwys. Ers cael ei benodi yn Brifardd Cymru yn fis Mawrth, mae Ifor ap Glyn wedi cyhoeddi mai ei fwriad oedd hyrwyddo’r iaith trwy ei farddoniaeth mewn cyfnod lle bo’r nifer isel o siaradwyr Cymraeg yn bryder iddo. Wedi ei fagu yn Llundain, mae’n annhebygol bod Ifor ap Glyn yn gweld defnydd o’i famiaith yn ei fywyd dyddiol, sy’n dangos pwysigrwydd y fraint hon. I mi, mae’r newyddion hyn yn cydnabod rôl y Cymry, ynghyd a gweddill y Deyrnas Unedig, yn y Rhyfel ac yn adnabod hanes y Cymry fel rhan o dreftadaeth ehangach Prydain. Fel myfyrwraig Hanes, rwyf yn gwybod yn rhy aml nad yw hanesion milwyr Cymreig yn cael ei gynnwys fel rhan o naratif ehangach y Rhyfel neu i’r un raddau a chenhedloedd eraill. Rydym wedi’r arfer a hanes unigolion fel Hedd Wyn yn yr ystafell

ddosbarth ac ar y sgrin fawr ac mae gwaith Ifor ap Glyn yn sicrhau bod ein treftadaeth yn parhau ac yn cydnabod yr holl filwyr oedd yn brwydro ar ein rhan. Ar ben hynny, credaf fod llwyddiant y gerdd ‘Terasau’ yn nodedig o amlddiwylliant cymdeithas heddiw. Fel Cymro yn Llundain, mae gwaith Ifor ap Glyn nid yn unig yn cyfrannu at gydweithrediad y Cymry a chenedlaethau eraill ond mae hefyd yn cynrychioli’r holl ddiwylliannau sy’n byw yn ein mysg yn y presennol. Gan ystyried newidiadau diweddar yng ngwleidyddiaeth y byd sydd wedi achosi rhaniad yng nghymdeithas America, mae llwyddiant Ifor ap Glyn yn ein hatgoffa o’r undeb rhwng yr holl genedlaethau a fu’n cynrychioli Prydain ac yn sicrhau ein diogelwch. Yn sicr, credaf fod yr anrhydedd hon yn annog ni i fyw mewn harmoni gyda’r holl ddiwylliannau yn ein cymdeithas heddiw, ynghyd a rhoi Cymru ar y map unwaith eto.

Yn y llun: Uchod: Stadiwm y Principality cyn y gem yn erbyn yr Ariannin. (Ffotograffydd: Liam Ketcher) I’r chwith: Terasau’ gan Ifor ap Glyn wedi ei thaflunio ar dŵr Big Ben. (Ffotograffydd: Megan Lewis, Gohebydd Golwg360)


Cloffni Llenyddol Cymru: amddifadu’r Cymoedd? Yn y llun: Merthyr Tudful yng nghymoedd De Cymru (Tarddiad: ‘Biggs’ drwy Flickr)

Morgan Owen

Nid yw’r Cymoedd mor dlawd a garw ag mae nifer yn credu, er maent yn dlotach na’r rhan fwyaf o lefydd yng Nghymru: fe’m maged yma’n hollol ddedwydd a hapus fy myd.


all ysgrifennu am Gymru fod yn gyfystyr â chloffni llenyddol. Gall ymddangos weithiau fod popeth a ddwg yr enw ‘llenyddiaeth Gymreig’ yn sefyll rhwng deupen ystrydebau gwirion. Ar y naill ben mae Cymru fynyddig wyllt a’i phobl oriog awenyddol, lle mae’r Sul yn dywyll gan ddu a brown defodol gwisg capel, lle mae corau persain yn melysu bywydau byrion a chaled y lofa: meddylier am Gymru’r telynegion. Ar y pen arall y mae’r llenor sydd yn melltithio’r Gymru ddychmygol hon, y delw-ddrylliwr ffrom, sydd, ysywaeth, yn ddibynnol ar Gymru’r sentimentalwr am ei ddeunydd a’i ergyd: meddylier am R. S. Thomas, er y gallai ef ar droeon fod yn sentimental bost. Efallai nad oes dianc rhag hon, ond mae’n werth ein hatgoffa ein hunain o’r fframwaith sy’n ein cyfyngu. Caethiwed llenyddol ydyw, a chaethiwed i’r gorffennol; ac er nad oes dim newydd yn y llinellau uchod, nid ydys eto wedi archwilio’r Cymoedd a’r ffordd y’u portreadir hwy o safbwynt ystrydebau ein llên. Neu o’r hyn lleiaf: nid ydys wedi tafoli’r Cymoedd fel y maent heddiw yn ôl y raddfa hon, ac os caf fod mor hy, cynigiaf ambell sylwad i’r perwyl hwn. Darllen am gwymp yr Undeb Sofietaidd a ysgogodd y meddyliau hyn a’r modd y mae pobl y gwledydd a’i ffurfiodd yn ymbalfalu yn rwbel ei chwalfa am eu hunaniaeth. Yn benodol, darllen Second-hand Time gan Svetlana Alexievich, llyfr yr argymhellwn i bawb. Fel ninnau yng Nghymru, fe’u gorfodwyd hwy i weld eu gwlad fel y mae, ac fe ddinoethwyd hi o’i gorffennol cysurus a chelwyddog yn hollol ddidrugaredd. Nid mawredd a fu,

ond diymadferthedd pobl a drochwyd drosodd a thro mewn trychineb. Adfeilion oedd plasau’r chwedlau, ac fe guddiwyd eu diffeithwch gan niwl rhamantaidd. Fel ninnau, roeddent yn ddibynnol ar ddiwydiant, a phan aeth hwnnw ar ddisberod ynghyd â’r byd a’r meddwl Sosialaidd (tybiedig) a’i cynhaliodd, daethant wyneb yn wyneb â chyfalafiaeth eithafol a’i chael yn anghyfarwydd ac estron, a chael eu gadael y tu ôl. Nid wyf yn honni o gwbl ein bod wedi dioddef fel y bobl hynny; sarhad iddynt fyddai honni felly, mor foethus oedd ein rhawd ni o gymharu â nhw. Ond, serch hynny, rhannwn un peth, sef ein bod wedi colli’n sydyn ein myth genedlaethol a’i holl ystrydebau canlynol. Rydym ni yng Nghymru yn garcharorion i ryw sentimentaleiddiwch na fynnwn mo’i hepgor, er ein bod yn gweld trwyddo. Rydym yn gwegian ar ymyl dadrithiad, ond nid oes gennym mo’r galon i’w gredu. Dwysawyd hyn yn y Cymoedd trwy golli’r Gymraeg, cyfrwng y dyddiau hynny sy’n dal i’n diffinio. A dyma ni yn dod at y Cymoedd. Teithio i Gaerdydd o Ferthyr ac yn ôl oeddwn wrth ddarllen am gwymp yr Undeb Sofietaidd, ac ar y ffordd, gwelais elfennau o’r ddwy Gymru ystrydebol, begynol. Gwelais fynyddoedd grugog, coedwigoedd, hynt sarffaidd Afon Taf a defaid. Gwelais hefyd ffatrïoedd gweigion, pensaernïaeth adfeiliog y gweithfeydd, tomenni slag a thai a adawyd am byth. Nid Eden y rhamantydd ydyw, mae hynny’n sicr. Nid yw’r gwyrddni adfywiedig wedi llwyddo hyd yma i guddio’r creithiau diwydiannol. Ond nid yw’n gloddfa ffrwythlon i’r delwddrylliwr ychwaith, am fod y gorffen-

nol eisoes yn deilchion. Collwyd gobaith i raddau helaeth, ac mae ymdeimlad o ymostwng i dynged arw yn pwyso’n drwm ar bopeth: nid oes dim ar ôl i’w ddryllio. Ymbellhawyd oddi wrth hanes y lle hwn. Ychydig o bobl yn wir sy’n gwybod rhyw lawer ohono. Neu fe benderfynwyd ei anghofio. O ran ein llên, felly, gwelwn fod y Cymoedd heddiw yn gorwedd y tu hwnt i’r ddau begwn. Nid oes lle i’r rhan hon o Gymru ar raddfa ein sentimentaleiddiwch a’n hystrydebau, ac o’r herwydd, fe’i hanwybyddir; yn y Gymraeg yn enwedig, chaiff odid ddim sylw. Yr unig dro y clywch am y Cymoedd yn y Gymraeg yw naill ai yn nhermau y gorffennol dychmygol a drafodwyd uchod na fodolodd erioed, neu fel rhyw ffagl gobaith, y lle llwm a thlodaidd sydd rywsut heb droi’n baith digyfraith, a lle mae ambell berson hyd yn oed yn siarad Cymraeg! Gair ymhellach am hyn. Nid wyf yn ymosod ar y sawl sy’n ceisio diffuant sôn am y Cymoedd mewn termau cadarnhaol. Yn hytrach, dweud yr wyf eu bod yn adweithio i’r rhagdyb eu bod yn llefydd geirwon, tlawd a cholledig, a thrwy ymateb i’r amgyffred hwn o’r lle, yn ei gyfiawnhau. Afraid dweud y bydd ambell un a ysgrifennodd am y Cymoedd i’w hamddiffyn yn brochi wrth ddarllen hwn. I chithau dywedaf: er eich dygn ymdrech, ni adawsoch i’r Cymoedd siarad dros eu hunain; ni wnaethoch eu gwneud yn ganolbwynt eich ymchwilio, ond yn hytrach, eu trafod megis o’r tu allan. Nid aethoch i sefyll ar yr un gwastad â nhw. Nid yw cylchoedd llenyddol Cymru am glywed am y Cymoedd cyfoes go iawn, Cymoedd y diwreiddio, y tlodi,

yr ymgodi a’r llithro yn ôl, y chwerwder a’r gobaith ystyfnig, y gwyrddni a’r diffeithwch, a’r brawdgarwch a’r cydberthyn. Ond, gall y Cymoedd ddwyn anadl einioes i esgyrn sychion ein llên. Ni ellir ysgrifennu’n onest yn y Gymraeg am y Cymoedd fel y maent heb fwrw ymaith ein hualau llenyddol, y ddau begwn hyn a phopeth rhyngddynt. Heb yr ymdrech hon, ni fydd llên Gymraeg ond ymdrybaeddfa rhamantiaeth dwp, breuddwydion liw dydd dosbarth canol ac efelychiadau ymhongar o lên Saesneg. Yng nghyswllt y Cymoedd, nid yw hyn yn golygu gorliwio tlodi na dim a ystyrir yn negyddol; byddai hynny yr un mor gyfyng, ac nid yw’r Cymoedd mor dlawd a garw ag mae nifer yn credu, er maent yn dlotach na’r rhan fwyaf o lefydd yng Nghymru: fe’m maged yma’n hollol ddedwydd a hapus fy myd. Golyga drafod y lle hwn fel y mae, yn Gymraeg. Nid yw hyn ychwaith yn golygu ildio i realaeth slafaidd, ddiflas. Efallai fy mod yn cynnig rhywbeth nad oes byth fodd ei wireddu, sef ymwrthod â phob moesoli confensiynol yng nghyswllt y Cymoedd. Yn y cyd-destun hwn, felly, rhaid cydnabod hanes a chymeriad y Cymoedd, ond eu tafoli o safbwynt organig y Cymoedd yn unig. Gwreiddyn y drwg yw ein bod yn amlach na heb yn eu gweld fel rhan o bethau eraill, a’u hieuo’n anghymarus. Yr unig ffordd y bydd rhywle a gollodd ei hunaniaeth i raddau helaeth yn ailgodi yw trwy ei sadio. Felly, lenorion â diddordeb yn y Cymoedd, ymwrthodwch â phob disgwrs a gafwyd hyn yma (er para ohonoch yn ymwybodol ohonynt) ac oedwch. Pan adewir i’r Cymoedd siarad, diau y cewch drysorau.

Rhaid cydnabod hanes a chymeriad y Cymoedd, ond eu tafoli o safbwynt organig y Cymoedd yn unig.

Give it a Go does


Give It A Go brings everyone’s favourite dating show to Y Plas! Open bar.

£5 to be a contestant / £2 to attend the event Sign up online > CARDIFFSTUDENTS.COM/GIVEITAGO






ativit rsity, cre e iv d g n i lebrat un! Events ce ion and lots of f t collabora


Artistic Aesthetics: an exhibition Art Society & Photography Society

19:00 The Lodge, Students’ Union 26/11/16

Dance Workshop

SLASH Society 18:00-22:00, Y Stiwdio, Students’ Union

CUOS DOES BROADWAY: Bernstein & Sondheim in concert CUOS Society 20:00, School of Music, Concert Hall 29/11/16

Dance Winter Showcase

A variety of dance societies 19:00, Y Plas, Students’ Union

The Equity Pitch Night

Finance & Trading Society 18:00, Wallace LT, Main Building

Creative Writing Open Mic Night English Literature Society 20:00, Ten Feet Tall 30/11/16


Act One Society 19:00, Pulse


Christmas Charity Social Journalism Society 19:30, Tiger Tiger

Annual Winter Dinner SAWSA Society 19:00 St David’s Hotel

Christmas Carols

Christian Union 19:00, Great Hall, Students’ Union 02/12/16

Christmas Concert

Blank Verse & Brass Band Society 19:00, School of Music, Concert Hall

Student Recital Series

Music Society 19:30, St. Martins Church


Cardiff Camerata Winter Concert

Music Society 14:30, School of Music, Concert Hall

Christmas Concert

City of Cardiff Concert Band & Jazz Orchestra 15:00, St. Teilos Church Woodville Road 05/12/16

Jazz at Christmas

Jazz Society 19:30, Y Plas, Students’ Union 07/12/16

Cardiff STAR Christmas Feast STAR 17:30 - 20:30, Trinity Centre, Newport Road

Charity Yoga Session



Cardiff Marrow 12:00 - 16:00, Food Court, Students’ Union

English Literature Society 18:00 - 20:00, Y Plas, Students’ Union

Christmas Concert

Heathcase Music Society 19:00, St. Teilos Church Woodville Road

Help the Homeless at Christmas Red Cross 18:30 - 20:00, Outside Capitol Shopping Centre


A Capella Winter Showcase

A Cappella Society 19:30, Y Plas, Students’ Union


Men’s Football the comeback kings as Women’s Lacrosse win again James Lloyd

Pictured: Pictures: Top (Football in Varsity action via Huw Evans Agency) Middle Maeve McKenny in action) Bottom(Elin Harding)


aniel Martin bagged a hattrick as the Men’s Football first team came from behind to beat rivals Cardiff Met, 5-2. Cardiff trailed 2-0 and fought back to 2-2 at the interval. Pascal Thornton also chipped in with a brace as the team moved into 3rd place in the Western 1A division. The Women’s Lacrosse team maintained their impressive start to the season as they thumped Southampton, 25-0 to stay top of the league with six wins from six. Boxer Brad Meddings travelled to Exeter for a bout and came out on top with a second round technical knockout over Tony Choi from the University of Exeter. Cardiff ’s Men’s Fencing second team overcame Southampton with a 126-110 victory to secure 3rd place in the league - Alex Wood enjoyed an exceptional afternoon taking home a positive 15 points difference in a dominant display.


The Women’s Volleyball team succumbed to a 3-0 loss to the University of Bristol, who are yet to lose a game this season. But there was better news for the men’s team as they shook off a sloppy start to beat the University of Bath, 3-2. Last weekend saw the return of the Aiuchi Jiu Jitsu nationals, writes Gianluca Gordon. The event involved nearly twelve hours of training over two days taught by the countries finest instructors, including three of our own: Sensei Rod (3rd Dan), Sensei Tom (2nd Dan) and Sensei Adam (1st Dan). Cardiff Jiu Jitsu is very proud to announce some fantastic results in the Gauntlet, a competition which involves walking in between two lines of attackers, where the participant must use attackers’ weight and momentum to control and defend themselves, showing style and suitability of technique. In the white belt category, Eve

Walker was awarded 1st place, Chris Rees came 2nd with Alexi Sedikides hot on his heels in 3rd for the yellow. Whilst, Valentina Goutet battled her way into the top four in the fierce green belt competition. On Saturday 6th November, three of Cardiff University Rowing Club’s athletes took part in the BUCS Small Boats Head of the River in Boston, Lincolnshire, writes Sam Davenport. This 5km race takes place on part of the River Witham, on the same weekend as British Rowing’s first under 23 assessment. Having taken part in a 2km ergo test on Saturday, our athletes Sam Bannister, Catherine James and Valentin Geneste then took part in the 5km race on Sunday in their single sculls. Sam raced in open weight men’s single, Catherine in open weight women’s single and Valentin in lightweight men’s singles. Each of them performed excellently in their individual categories; Sam achieved 17th out of 26 competitors,

Catherine achieved 29th out of 44 competitors and Valentin achieved 5th out of 42. A fantastic result for this small group of University rowers and, to top it off, Valentin’s 5th place earned him six BUCS points, an added bonus for the University and the Club! Valentin finished amongst some of the most talented lightweight men in the country.

Week Six of Athlete of the Week

acrosse star Maeve McKenny enjoyed a superb game last Wednesday as the women’s lacrosse team stormed to a 25-0 win over Southampton. Her performance saw her crowned this weeks’ Athlete of the Week, as the team made it six wins from six to top the league. McKenny had to “bust a gut” along with the rest of the defence to shutout Southampton and gave the attackers the

license to run riot. McKenny, who has been playing lacrosse for 10 years, has been called up to the Wales development squad. And the midfielder even chipped in with four goals against Southampton, whilst utilised her quick reaction time to recover a number of centre draws. Cardiff women’s lacrosse team, have a whopping goal difference of 67, having brushed aside most of their opponents

this season in the Western 1A; their closest game an 11-10 win against Exeter. And McKenny expressed her delight at winning the coveted Athlete of the Week award, she said: “I was surprised but extraordinarily pleased to be crowned the AotW. The team endured some really tough conditions through the first half but we didn’t let it dampen our spirits as Cardiff scored 18 goals and didn’t concede a goal. It was a great game to participate in as the team spirit really carried us though, with everyone bringing their best game. The attack moved effortlessly showcasing everyone’s natural flare allowing Cardiff to end up getting 25 goals. The end result really reflected the teamwork and hard work everyone put in.” The girls will want to transfer their league form into the cup when they play against Reading on Wednesday.

Elin’s Thoughts: Cardiff sit 11th in BUCS table


’m back in the office after my break to Cambodia and it’s been a very busy return. It’s been great to see Cardiff students out and about in BUCS games; with a lot of positive results and individual success. The lacrosse girls are doing super well at the moment, having sealed their sixth win of the season from as many games - and congratulations to Maeve on being announced as Athlete of the Week. The team haven’t lost a game since February 17th, when they narrowly lost 12-11 to Imperial College London. It’s been a great run of form, so long may that continue, and I wish they have a successful cup run, which begins on

Wednesday against University of Reading. Another university team who are doing outstandingly well are the Cardiff Cobras American Football team. The team won ‘Most Improved Club’ and lost a number of key players last season due to graduation. And against the odds, the club have come out fighting courtesy of some new players and triumphed in their opening two games. It would be great for the Cobras to keep winning and hopefully they can make the play-offs! The badminton club are also enjoying success, whilst my sport, Netball, are flying high. The first team are currently 2nd in the Premier South which

is a fantastic achievement. Cardiff sit in 11th in the BUCS table, so it would be nice if we can edge into the Top 10, and possibly beyond by Christmas. The Medics’ Varsity is due to take place on 3rd December, so keep your eyes out on that for any announcements - the event this year is in Bristol. We hope to continue this successful event, and it would be even better to see Cardiff maintain their unbeaten record over Bristol, as we are yet to lose a sport to them across the two years since the first event. Plans for the Welsh Varsity are well underway, unfortunately nothing can be revealed as yet, but watch this space.

Plans for the Welsh Varsity are well underway, unfortunately nothing can be revealed as yet


Wounded Dragons have Mountain to climb Dan Heard

With a number of rookies contributing early in the season and several experienced players still left standing at important positions, there is plenty of reason for optimism in the Cobras camp.



ust over two years ago, Wales travelled to Brussels to take on Belgium in their fourth qualifying game for 2016 European Championships. They came away from the King Baudouin Stadium with only a point, but not for lack of trying, with almost every outfield player acting as a defender for much of the game. Gareth Bale even cleared off the line late on to preserve their clean sheet and leave them with eight points. What happened next was… well, it’s been well documented what happened next. Beat the Belgians at home, qualified for a major tournament, first Euro Championships, topped the group, beat Northern Ireland, beat the Belgians again, lost to the eventual winners, but returned home as heroes. Bale scored (some crackers), Hal Robson-Kanu’s Cruyff turn, Joe Ledley’s dancing! It was unbelievable. Almost as unbelievable as where Wales now find themselves following their adventure in France. Again, they’re four games into a qualifying campaign, this time for the World Cup in Russia in two years’ time, and are still unbeaten in the group, as they were at this stage in 2014. But it comes off the back of the third successive draw for Chris Coleman’s men, and all three of those having lead those games before throwing it away. The cruellest of which so far was no doubt Alexander Mitrovic’s header five minutes from time as Serbia snatched a late, possibly vital point in Cardiff last Saturday night to leave the hosts third in the table, trailing the Serbs and new group leaders, Martin O’Neil’s Republic of Ireland, who they face in Dublin in their next qualifier in March.


Is it that they still haven’t shaken off their hangover from the success in the summer? I mean, shouldn’t a team off the back of their best ever performance at a major finals, only their second ever major tournament, be brimming with confidence? It was certainly there in the demolition of Moldova in the first game, but that was the last time Wales won, and, perhaps more worryingly, kept a clean sheet too. Where has that defensive solidarity that saw off Belgium three times gone? The “five at the back” that the fans sing at the top of their lungs every game became four against Serbia. Moving further up the pitch, few teams can boast having a holding midfield duo that were nominated for team of the tournament, and then of course there’s the eighty five million pound Galactico up front. Alongside a guy released by Championship side Reading before they’d even touched down in France. Is that it then? The depth? In all honesty, looking beyond the starting eleven that featured in qualifying last time around and in the Euro’s, there have been no real tactical changes, except when Coleman has been forced to do so through injury. A full strength squad, bar the hugely influential Aaron Ramsey, put in a full strength performance against Moldova. But facing Austria out in Vienna, there was no Ramsey again, with Jonny Williams also absent, before Joe Allen, scorer of one of the goals of the group, hobbled off injured too, meaning he’d miss the tie with Georgia. And how he was missed. A one-all draw against a side ranked over a hundred places below their hosts would have been bad

Pictured: Wales preparing to face the Netherlands in Cardiff. (Photographer: Jon Candy) Below: Dusan Tadic in the mixed zone

enough had Wales not already squandered a lead twice in the previous game. For the visit of Serbia, though Ramsey, Allen and Williams returned, Ben Davies, so crucial to the defensive set up, was now on the side-lines, joined soon after by his most likely replacement, James Collins. Their play was exactly like their squad make-up, limited. While the togetherness of the camp was never in doubt during the championships, with Coleman having to chop and change this around injuries, maybe some of it has now warn a little thin. Calling up uncapped youngsters from League One might do wonders for their individual self-confidence, but when opponents like Ireland and Serbia can name starting line-ups and benches

filled with Premier League talent, it only highlights the worrying lack of depth that Wales have in their ranks. And while I’m all for blooding youth with experience, now ideally is not the time. But it looks as though there are few other options. That’s why David Vaughan found himself on the plane to France, as even though he had at least three better players ahead of him, his experience in the top flight (in several countries) counted in his favour. As I say, this wasn’t an issue last time around, as by some miracle, injuries were minimal and not too disruptive. Now, in a group that is, dare I say, a lot harder this time around, those injuries take their toll, on the shape, make-up and ultimate style of play of the team.

Wales 1-1 Serbia: Tadic and Ledley react

late header unfortunately denied the Welsh from grabbing all three points in a vitally important match in Group D of World Cup qualifying. The game in truth was dominated with stoppages both from the players and the referee and never really got going. However, after holding out for so long through a Gareth Bale solo

strike, Wales will be bitterly disappointed not to see out for what would have been a vital three points in qualification for Russia 2018. Wales currently lie third in the group with six points just behind Serbia in second, with the Republic of Ireland topping the group on ten points. The Irish are Wales’ next opponents next March in what looks

like a hugely important crunch match between the nations in Dublin. The outcome of that encounter will certainly go close in deciding who will qualify come next October. We exclusively caught up with players from both sides after the game. First, Dusan Tadic believed it was a tough match at the Cardiff City Stadium, he said: “The game was really difficult. We wanted to come here and get the three points but in the end it was a really important point for us. “We knew from the beginning that it would be a really tight group and that everyone can beat each other but you never know who will come out first and second so its all to play for.” The Southampton playmaker commented on his injury after he was struck by a stray Neil Taylor boot, adding: “I might have broken my nose, but it does not matter, I couldn’t see so many things on the pitch, but I wanted to play on. I think this was an important game for the team so I did not want to let my teammates down. When you play an international game you just want to fight for your country and try to give the best.”

Tadic joked that the injury wasn’t too bad, smirking: “After the game he [Taylor] asked me how I was, but it’s fine; we already beat them [Swansea] so there will be no revenge; we fly to Ukraine for the next game but I will not go to hospital, Serbian people are not so soft.” Crystal Palace ace Joe Ledley explained his disappointment that Wales threw away the lead for the second time in as many matches, he said: “We are obviously devastated not to come away with the three points. We think we deserved the win, but that’s football we need to learn from this and we are still undefeated, not many teams are going to beat us and we need to take that form going through and get three points in Ireland which is going to be a big ask.” He added: “The game was always going to be tough in this competition. A few years ago we lost 6-1 to Serbia so it just proves how well Wales have done so far. There were more positives in that game than negatives. They did not look like hurting us at all. They had one chance and it went in, we just need to learn how to see a game out. As I say there are a lot of positives to take from the game and we will look forward to March.”

Wales currently lie third in the group with six points just behind Serbia in second


Lights, Camera, Engage!

Mark Wyatt

It was such a fabulous project for two amazing causes! Georgia Mansfield

Rich Jones

Gareth Axenderrie Cardiff Blues Columnist


Some of Cardiff ’s fiercest rugby players have bared all to raise money for charity.

ardiff University Ladies’ Rugby Football Club and CoppaFeel have collaborated this year and launched an inspiring campaign by creating a naked calendar for 2017. CoppaFeel are a women’s breast cancer awareness charity and half of the proceeds of the calendar will go directly to them, whilst the other half will be going to CULRFC funding. The initiative has gained significant coverage across Cardiff University and the club hope that they can raise as much money as possible over the festive period and into the New Year. Rosie Foley from the club said “I really wanted to do the shoot as it was something fun and from my own family experience of breast cancer I wanted to raise awareness for Coppa Feel and this is a great way to promote women’s rugby!” This isn’t the first time the University has seen it’s students strip off for charity, the Athletic Union stripped

off in 2013 for the men’s health charity Mind and gained national coverage for their efforts. “It was such a fabulous project for two amazing causes,” said Georgia Mansfield. She added: “We all had a fab day shooting the photos and can’t wait to share this project with everyone’” Abi Harris, also one to brave the calendar shoot, said the whole project worked brilliantly to help the team come together. She said: “It was a great way to bond with all the girls for a great cause. It’s amazing how quickly we all forgot about our own individual hang ups about our bodies and just enjoyed running around naked!” If you want to scoop the saucy calendar whilst stocks last then you can head over to the Students’ Union website on CULRFC’s page. It’s priced at £7 and remember the money raised will go towards CoppaFeel and the funding for the ladies team.

Pictured: CULRFC pose for their 2017 calendar. (Via the Rugby Club). Below, Shane Williams after his final Wales game (Via Flickr).

Wales stars inducted into Hall of Fame


hree Welsh legends have been inducted into the World Rugby Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 2016. Shane Williams, John Dawes and Arthur Gould all joined illustrious company as part of the 12-strong group of new inductees announced last week. The trio bring the number of Welsh representatives in the Hall of Fame to 20 and are joined by the likes of Brian O’Driscoll, Johnny Wilkinson and Laurence Dallaglio. Gould, who played for Wales in the late-1800s, earned 27 caps and is widely regarded as the first superstar of Welsh rugby. Dawes, also a centre, made 22 appearances for Wales and oversaw one of their most successful periods as Head Coach from 1974 until 1979. But it is the inclusion of Williams which has gained most headlines. The wing wizard is one of the most popular Welsh players in recent memory and has now received welldeserved recognition from World Rugby.


n inexperienced Blues squad appear to face an uphill struggle in the Anglo-Welsh Cup this season as the gaping void in strength between the Welsh regions and their English counterparts appears as wide as ever. The capital region was humbled 62-25 at the hands of an Exeter side who simply looked a class apart across the park. The Blues side that travelled to Sandy Park last week had an average age of just 20, and was void of experienced heads despite promising performances from future starlets Rhun Williams, James Sheekey and Jarrod Evans.

Few could argue the 39-year-old deserves his place following a glittering career which came to an end last year. He amassed a record total of 58 tries and won 87 caps for Wales whilst also featuring on three British and Irish Lions tours. The Swansea-born ace was at the heart of Wales’ Grand Slam successes in 2005 and 2008, scooping the IRB World Player of the Year award in 2008 following his electrifying performances. Whilst some will be surprised to see Williams already inducted in the Hall of Fame, there can be little doubting his impact on Welsh rugby. He was at the forefront of their rise back to prominence after a barren spell, and his flair was crucial to Wales for a number of years. Nobody who witnessed Williams’ career would doubt he fully deserves his place amongst World Rugby’s elite. He was officially inducted alongside Dawes and Gould at a special ceremony in Rugby last Thursday. The humbling, which coach Richard Hodges described as “naïve and poor at times”, will dent the feel-good factor that a solid start to the season has created. The Blues management clearly favour using the competition solely to blood youngsters, but they must be bitterly disappointed with such a gulf in class between themselves and their opponents. What Exeter did well was balance their youthful exuberance with experienced players, underpinning it with international quality in the likes of Tom Johnson and Michele Campagnaro. The West Country side

Williams was at the forefront of their rise back to promininence after a barren spell, and his flair was crucial to Wales.

always looked in control of the game, despite a quick start by the visitors, and at times the game appeared more of a training session than a competitive professional rugby match. Yes, the Anglo-Welsh Cup has long been a competition used to develop fringe and youth players, but one must ask whether there really is any benefit to shipping 62 points to an English rival. The Blues have experienced players in their squad that could have done with some game time. The likes of Matthew Morgan and new man Willis Halaholo would have gained from time on the park whilst adding a little bite to an

otherwise toothless performance. Development is essential to the regions’ long term sustainability, and as Keelan Giles at the Ospreys has showed in recent weeks, giving youth a chance can have very positive consequences. However, it is a balancing act, and whilst the Blues youngsters will learn from this disappointment, you really wouldn’t want them taking a beating of this magnitude too often. It feels a long time since the Blues won the Anglo-Welsh Cup in 2009. Since then, Welsh regions haven’t had a sniff of silverware, and this year doesn’t seem to hold too much hope of changing that.


Cardiff overcome USW to get back on track

James Lloyd

A wounded animal is always a dangerous thing. Alun-Wyn Davies, Head of Rugby


lun-Wyn Davies praised his Cardiff men’s first team players after they returned to winning ways with a hard-fought 13-5 victory away against University of South Wales (USW) at Trefforest last Wednesday. Harry Lang’s first-half try and eight points from the boot of fresher fly-half Conor Graney secured the win for Cardiff as they recovered from their 10-8 defeat to rivals Swansea on the 9th November. And Davies was pleased that his side came out on top in a dogged affair marred by a typical Welsh downpour. He said: “It was tough conditions today, I think in the nature of the game and the strategy we went in with we executed quite well. “We highlighted this game as a potential banana skin, but like the Swansea game defensively we were fantastic, scrums again we were dominant and again we should have had a lot of reward from that, it’s a step in the right direction in what we say in learning to win.” The Head of Rugby gave his weekly metaphoric assessment of the team, adding: “A wounded animal is always a dangerous thing. That’s something we looked at today and wanted to emphasise, I think the guys reacted really well, I asked for a reaction and we got it with a win.

“I think the whole scrum was good. It was difficult for anyone to express themselves in those conditions. I thought Connor Graney for his first start back from the freshers’ played very well and controlled the game well with the territory. He kicked well and Harry Lang had a great finish in the corner. It was nice to score one of our tries through expansion and going wide, that’s a testament really to the players.” After the disappointing loss to Swansea in their previous game, Davies highlighted the importance of the win. “I had a lot of peeved off players last week”, he said. “I’ve watched the game a few times and I still haven’t got any answers to it really. I think it was one of those things, but we put it behind us quite quickly in the review meeting and we concentrated on today, and the reaction we got, I couldn’t ask for much more, it’s a win in tough conditions away at USW. To me that’s fantastic.” Cardiff started the game brightly and were able to steal three USW lineouts, courtesy of lock Ben Egan. But, when the Pontypool new-boy departed with concussion, penalties came thick and fast as the men in red conceded five in a ten-minute spell. Graney soon began pulling the strings as Cardiff etched into UWE’s half 15 minutes into the game. The young 10

saw a penalty skim off the uprights but minutes later his team made the breakthrough. Owen Clement pounced on a loose ball after a scrum, as the ball quickly recycled its way through the backs, eventually finding Lang who crossed over in the corner. Graney impressively kicked the conversion from out wide and minutes later slotted a penalty to give Cardiff a 10-0 advantage. A mix of mud and questionable refereeing decisions hampered the progress of both teams, as the game hit a lull. USW scored a try in the corner for their only points of the afternoon, but after that it stayed cagey. Graney added another penalty midway through to put Cardiff ahead by two scores and that advantage was rarely in danger. Cardiff did come knocking but were eventually halted by the referee’s whistle

after an infringement at the scrum. Replacement Josh Reed was sent to the bin ten minutes from time to set up a nervy finale, but USW met a red brick wall who valiantly held firm after a number of phases to close the game out.

assertions as to how the season may play out. But at dark times like these – specifically The International Break - football demands assessments and craves predictions. Maybe it is a symptom of the human race’s fear of the unknown that fuels this desire to seek certainty. Or maybe we should just get rid of international football. Whatever the source is it doesn’t matter. Warnock’s receiving an appraisal, whether I like it or not. Under the man from Yorkshire Cardiff ’s points return has been mediocre, seven from a possible

fifteen isn’t the worst but it does need to improve. Performances have been fairly encouraging and the Bluebirds actually sit 14th in the Championship Form Table which should reassure fans that at least Warnock has got the team moving in the right direction. A real concern is the inability to convert chances. Cardiff are the equal secondlowest scorers in the division, an issue Warnock has really lamented. Against Wigan Cardiff had 19 shots at goal, only registered four on target and they lost. If this continues then fans have reason to worry but Rickie Lambert regaining full fitness and

Warnock’s awareness to the situation should help. Recently Warnock spoke about bringing “two or three in during January” and it should be no surprise if he opts to target a striker. The potential pursuit of another striker should really raise questions about the decision to bring in Chamakh who was ineffective against Newcastle. It would be bordering on ridiculous if he was to be gifted a contract extension. Kieran Richardson’s performances have been encouraging and due to his versatility it would be wise to offer him an extension.

CARDIFF PLAYER RATINGS: Cardiff: O Williams 6; H Lang 7, H Griffiths 6, H Parks 6, S Jack 6, C Graney 7, O Clement 6; N Ibister 7, J Haines 6, A Rees 8, J McGrath (c) 6, B Egan 5, O Hitchings 8, A Hughes 6, C Williams 7 Man of the Match: Aled Rees (Cardiff - Prop) Points: Try - H Lang (14), Conversion - C Graney (14), Penalties - C Graney (17, 65)

Statistical breakdown of Cardiff 13-5 USW

Pictured: Above: Cardiff Freshers’ in Varsity action (Via Huw Evans Photo Agency) Right: Graphic via Sam Button.

Harry Borg Cardiff City Columnist


ppraisals are common in a vast range of companies and businesses, it is a method by which the job performance of an individual is evaluated against a specific criteria. Now, considering the rut Cardiff City were in when Neil Warnock took over it is safe to assume his principle target was to merely keep them in the division whilst trying to lay foundations for a successful campaign next year. Bearing in mind Warnock has only been at the helm for just over a month it is a completely, utterly and entirely irrational time to start casting


Editors: James Lloyd Mark Wyatt Rich Jones Shaun Davey @GairRhyddSport sport@gairrhydd.com gairrhydd.com/sport

Also this week

Major setback for Wales in World Cup Qualification P37>>

Cardiff Uni Rugby bounce back against USW P39>>

Treble for Chamberlain as Cobras make it two from two

Cardiff University’s American Football team defeat the Solent Redhawks 32-20 and set the early pace in BUCS 1A South West. Rich Jones


ardiff Cobras American Football team made it two wins from two with a sensational 32-20 success over the Solent Redhawks last weekend. The Cobras had opened up their season with a narrow 14-12 triumph over Exeter a week earlier but headed into their second game as underdogs after the Redhawks thrashed the UWE Bullets 45-0 in week one. Yet Sean Patrick Cook’s side rose to the occasion to take an early lead in the BUCS 1A South West and send a clear message to their divisional rivals. Three touchdowns from Carwyn Chamberlain plus scores from Ross Ludlow and Liam Sharma saw the Cobras come out on top in their first game at Llanrumney since 2014. They went behind early on as their first pass of the game was intercepted and returned for a Solent touchdown.

But they quickly responded with a series of big run plays from rookie Ludlow. A powerful drive was eventually finished off by fellow running back Chamberlain as he ran in for their opening touchdown. Moments later, the Cobras produced a carbon copy with Ludlow again making big yards to march them down the field before Chamberlain sliced into the end zone to give them a 12-6 lead. However, Solent powered over from a yard out on the stroke of halftime to ensure the sides headed into the interval level. The Cobras nonetheless picked up where they left off on offense, with their powerful offensive line continuing to assert their dominance in the run game. Ludlow bagged a well deserved touchdown of his own in the third quarter before Chamberlain completed his hat-trick. Scott Higgins hauled in a well-worked

two-point conversion after their fourth score and they home side led 26-12. A mix-up in the backfield on the Cobras’ next possession gifted Solent a simple touchdown to threaten a tense finale. But they responded with another composed drive, culminating in a perfect pass from rookie Quarterback Max Milburn to find Liam Sharma in the back corner of the end zone. The visitors desperately tried to launch a late comeback, but an interception from veteran linebacker Robin Ford with just over a minute remaining wrapped up a memorable victory. It was a convincing win for the Cobras against a Solent side being tipped by many as the team to beat in the BUCS 1A South West division. They will now head into a bye week high on confidence before hosting the UWE Bullets on Sunday (1pm) at Llanrumney.

Pictured: Head Coach Sean Patrick Cook during his playing days with the Cobras last season. (Photography via Tallboy Images)

Three Welsh legends inducted into World Rugby Hall of Fame P38>>

Ladies rugby and CoppaFeel bare all for charity P38 >>

Profile for Cardiff Student Media

Gair Rhydd 1087 - 21st November 2016  

Gair Rhydd 1087 - 21st November 2016  

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