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C ITY L IFE Editor Jennifer Hobbs-Roberts Creative Director Mark Roberts Editorial 0845 180 2345 Cardiff House Cardiff Road Cardiff CF63 2AW Passionate about Cardiff We are a small independent publisher. We are not a large publishing group pretending to be home grown. City Life magazine is written, designed and printed in Cardiff for the people of Cardiff. Our philosophy We are committed to quality. This quote by William Foster pretty much sums up our thinking: “Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives.” Caveat emptor Advertisers supply their own copy or artwork, and therefore City Life cannot accept any responsibility for disputes between advertisers and their customers. Caveat emptor - let the buyer beware. Important you read this We have made every effort to ensure that all information contained in City Life or on (or our social media streams) is correct and accurate. However, we accept no responsibility for any errors or omissions and can offer no compensation should we get it wrong. Please note that the opinions, thoughts, views or ideas expressed in articles contained in City Life are strictly those of the authors. Intellectual property © Copyright City Life 2018. All rights reserved. Nothing in this magazine (including adverts) may be reproduced in any shape or form (in whole or part) without the express written permission of the publishers. We take breach of copyright and theft of intellectual property extremely seriously and will sue at the drop of a croissant. You have been warned (nicely); ignorance is no excuse. Subscriptions To guarantee your copy, please send a cheque for £20 (four issues) made payable to City Life. Visit for special subscriber discounts and special offers.

We’re very sociable! We’re on the web! Like on Facebook! Follow on Twitter! @CityLifeCardiff #CityLifeCardiff

Talking about talent, in this issue we feature several of Cardiff and Wales’ rising stars. On page 34 you’ll see the vibrant work of Martin Briggs. While Sofie is in the early years of her financial career, Martin has left his behind to concentrate on painting. He recently showcased his works at the excellent Cardiff MADE in Roath - certainly ‘one to watch’, Martin is definitely one of Wales’ rising stars.

Kevin loves shooting people so you’ll often see him around the city trying to capture the soul of Cardiff. If you’d like to promote your business in the winter issue (out in December), please get in touch. And you can join us on Facebook (City Life Cardiff) and on Twitter @CityLifeCardiff. We’d love to connect with you.

On page 38 you’ll find Vernon Jones. His seascapes are magnificent and, on page 32, you’ll find Jon Pountney. Jon is probably best known for his photography but his artwork is equally impressive.

Remember, winter is coming. Wrap up warm, see you soon. Jennifer Hobbs-Roberts Editor 07766 106 701

With photography in mind, you’ll see the street photography of Kevin Moore on page 26.

Choose Life Choose City Life

If you’d like to promote your business in City Life, please call Jennifer on 07766 106701. Promote your business Butcher? Baker? Candlestick maker? Whatever business you’re in, reach over 35,000 aspirational readers right across Cardiff and beyond! For more information call 07766 106701 or email

C ITY L IFE AU T U MN 2 01 5



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Green is good The pulp used in the production of the paper City Life is printed on is sourced from sustainably managed Scandinavian tree farms and utilises an elementary chlorine-free bleaching process.

Our cover star is the very talented Sofie Symonds. Sofie is an extremely talented financial advisor with clients all across the UK. Her consultancy Innovia is based near Pen-y-lan so if you need advice on investments, Sofie certainly knows her stuff.


Yes it’s free. Priceless actually! City Life is distributed free through a wide variety of outlets across Cardiff and beyond and is given away free of charge on the understanding that we are happy for it to be lent, passed on, given to friends and generally read until it falls apart. At which point, you can recycle it and we’d be delighted if you did.

This autumn issue is bursting with creativity and full of colour. Fitting really, because autumn is probably our favourite season of the year. We just love autumn colours.


Missed the last issue? We hold a small number of each issue in stock so if you do need a pristine copy, please telephone us or email Hopefully we’ll have the issue you want (but we cannot guarantee it). Each back issue costs £5 including postage and packing.


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Congratulations! We are delighted to hear that Josh Llewellyn-Jones achieved his goal of lifting a million kilos in twenty four hours. Josh has Cystic Fibrosis which makes this even more astonishing. Read all about his challenge on page 23.



12 Autumn has arrived. With gorgeous colours in mind, this issue is packed with much more to colour your thinking.





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Sofie Symonds owns and manages Innovia Wealth Management, providers of holistic financial planning, and is an Associate Partner Practice of St. James’s Place Wealth Management. Sofie is married to exprofessional ice hockey player Alex Symonds. The couple have two children and have lived in Cardiff since 2006.

IA NNOVIA WEALTH OF KNOWLEDGE City Life caught up with high flying Sofie at her Innovia office near Penylan to find out more about her career and family life in Cardiff. What approach do you use when giving advice? I am committed to building sustainable, long-term client relationships based on highly personalised advice. It is important to meet with clients in person. I believe this approach helps us to have a clear understanding of clients’ personal and financial objectives. How do you maintain client loyalty? Regular updates and communication are an important part of maintaining client relationships. I regularly contact them with updates, and I am always available to address concerns as quickly as possible. If there is a specific issue, we set up a face-to-face meeting.

“I am committed to building sustainable, long-term client relationships based on highly personalised advice.” What services do you offer? I do not provide off-the-shelf solutions. With an ever-changing environment, client circumstances and government legislations, I feel that it is essential to write bespoke financial plans for clients so that they can achieve their goals, and, more importantly, to review these plans regularly to ensure they remain current and accurate.

I offer client focused advice and specialist knowledge around all areas of wealth management. n Building and preserving wealth n Build a pension for retirement n Achieve financial protection against risk n Reduce income tax, capital gains tax and inheritance tax liabilities n Intergeneration planning n Managing cash and borrowings What type of clients do you work with? Quite a variety – they can be individuals, families, business owners and trustees. Also, I work closely with other professionals such as solicitors, accountants and other financial services specialists to ensure that my clients receive the best advice available. I strive to deliver the highest level of commitment, transparency and ethical conduct in all relations and dealing. I build my business solely on introductions, both from my private clients, and from other long-standing professional relationships. Where do they come from geographically? Anywhere in Wales and England.

Do you only deal with high wealth clients? Not at all, I believe everyone deserves help to navigate the potential minefield of personal finance. Does investing come with risks? Investing is inherently risky. Most investors accept that they need to take some risk in order to have the best chance of achieving their longer-term goals. Choosing not to invest your money also carries risks in particular, the spending power of money reduces over time due to the effects of inflation. As a rule of thumb, an inflation rate of 5% each year will, over a period of ten years, could reduce the real value of your money by 40%. The key to successful investment is not to avoid risk entirely, but instead to find an appropriate balance of risk and reward to help you meet your investment objectives. However, It is important you hold cash to meet your short-term needs and only invest money that you can afford to leave for the longer term and that may fluctuate in value.

The value of an investment with St. James’s Place will be directly linked to the performance of the funds you select and the value can therefore go down as well as up. You may get back less than you invested. Equities do not have the security of capital which is characteristic of a deposit with a bank or building society.



What clients say “I have now been using Sofie’s services for just under a year and during this time she has provided excellent and informative support that has allowed me to make the best informed decisions regarding my finances. Sofie is very approachable and knowledgeable and has been able to guide me effortlessly through the options available to secure my family’s future. I thoroughly recommend working with her.” Francisco Munoz, Director LTS

Where should clients invest their money at the moment? It depends on the client’s goals specifically if they are long, short, or medium term. As the short term can be so unpredictable you should consider planning your investments for the longer term. In addition, it is very important to know the client’s objective. So, for example, is it for income? Is it for growth? Is it to mitigate inheritance tax? My advice when it comes to investment is diversify your investments as widely as possible. How many people do you work with? We’re a small team - compact and bijou. Myself and Donna Symonds, plus two other administrators. Where do you see your practice in five years? I’d love to be the number one financial planning company in Wales by building long-term, high-trust relationships and, hopefully, my clients feel that the advice I provide is of the very highest standard.

What drives you? I like a challenge. I want to do well both professionally and personally. I try to distinguish myself amongst all the financial advisers out there. Does your work come with a great deal of job satisfaction? I enjoy establishing life goals. So, yes, when I help people reach their objectives, I enjoy that very much. And, when people refer me, it means I’ve done a good job.

Innovia Wealth Management Associate Partner Practice of St. James’s Place Wealth Management 13 Clarendon Road Penylan, Cardiff CF23 9JD 02922 405725 / 07413 015192 The Partner Practice represents only St. James's Place Wealth Management plc (which is authorised

What do you love about Cardiff? Its national cultural and sporting institutions - I really love this city. I’ve watched Cardiff grow and seen significant developments over the last twelve years. It fills me with pride. I love going out to restaurants, Cardiff Bay events and Rugby Six Nations.

What do you do in your down time? I like reading a lot, socialising and going to the gym. I enjoy keeping fit and eating healthy food, I believe in “healthy body, healthy mind”. Describe yourself in three words? Hard-workorking. Diligent. Trustworthy. 8

and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority) for the purpose of advising solely on the Group's wealth management products and services, more details of which are set out on the Group's website at The `St. James's Place Partnership' and the titles `Partner' and `Partner Practice' are marketing terms used to describe St. James's Place representatives.

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Kyffin Williams paintings at Senedd Rarely seen works by the celebrated Welsh artist Sir Kyffin Williams RA will go on display at the Senedd throughout October. The exhibition, in partnership with the Sir Kyffin Williams Trust, is the culmination of the centenary celebrations marking 100 years since the birth of the painter widely regarded as a defining artist of the 20th century. Visitors to the Senedd will be able to view paintings and prints from private collections as well as archive footage of Sir Kyffin who lived in Pwllfanogl, Llanfairpwll, on Anglesey. David Meredith, Chairman of the Sir Kyffin Williams Trust said, “I can think of no greater honour than to be able to conclude the Sir Kyffin Centenary Celebrations in Wales (1918-2018) at the Senedd in Cardiff Bay.” Elin Jones AM, Llywydd of the National Assembly for Wales said, “I would like to thank the Sir Kyffin Williams Trust for choosing the Senedd as a fitting place for the climax of their centenary

celebrations and I am very much looking forward to seeing these defining works on display. “I would like to welcome more great art and artists to the Senedd from across Wales to help visitors further understand our history and proud heritage.” On Saturday 27 October a special tour of the exhibition will be delivered by the National Library of Wales which will be an opportunity to learn more about the life and work of Sir Kyffin Williams. Booking is essential - please contact 0300 2006565 or email


Penarth is getting well-deserved recognition for its restaurants, drawing in visitors from near and far. A new restaurant that’s getting everyone talking is Keyif in Glebe Street. If you like Turkish cuisine, then you’ll love what Keyif has to offer. Owned by a true Turk, Mehmet and his team offer authentic dishes, full of flavour in convivial surroundings. We’ve all heard of hummus, shish and Kleftico and yes, these are available, as well as stuffed vine leaves, Musakka and the Keyif mixed grill. All of these dishes are of generous portions and are served by well trained, friendly staff. Children are catered for, as well as vegetarians and vegans. The prices are very reasonably as well so you’ll be able to splash out on a good bottle of wine and a delicious dessert of Baklava or Kunefe (firm Turkish favourites).

“Our group of four enjoyed a delicious meal on the evening of Sat 14th. Varied menu catered for all our diverse tastes and our order was served promptly by the polite and attentive staff. The place was packed so a good atmosphere too. Our first visit but certainly won’t be our last! Thanks, Keyif for a lovely evening.” JACKIE VINING 5* 11

Keyif 21 Glebe Street, Penarth CF64 1EE 029 2070 2429

The Brogue Trader in Cardiff ’s Morgan Arcade is a real success story. Launched by Chris Macnamara in 2013, it has established a much deserved reputation for customer service and for supplying a selection of the finest handmade shoes, leather goods and accessories - many of which are British brands.

SIX A PPEAL The Brogue Trader is a true, familyrun business in every sense. The company now employs Chris’s two sons, Keiron and Daniel, and daughter Stacey, something Chris is extremely proud of. Since opening its doors in Morgan Arcade five years ago, the business has grown year on year and now, in partnership with Loake shoes, Chris opened their tenth shop recently in Manchester. Along the way, The Brogue Trader has won countless awards and, most importantly, a loyal clientele not only from Cardiff and across Wales, but across the UK and many who order online through the company’s website.

At the heart of The Brogue Trader ethos is superb customer service. Chris and his team are incredibly passionate and go out of their way to ensure customer loyalty is appreciated. To further reward customer loyalty, they came up with the Six Pair Club*, and they seem to be the only shoe company in the UK offering this type of loyalty scheme. Owner Chris said, “Basically, you buy six pairs and your seventh pair is free! We have found that it creates loyalty and commitment from the customer and we repay that by giving away a free pair.” Talking about great service and great brands, Chris and his team only 12

stock what they consider to be the very best, including historic British brands such as Loake, Crockett & Jones, Trickers and Oliver Sweeney, to guarantee excellent quality in every pair of shoes they supply (they even offer a home service).

The loyalty scheme has been a real success with Six Pair Club customers qualifying for their free seventh pair right across the country. “Ultimately, we’re a product of great customer service, “says Chris, “at The Brogue Trader, every member of our team understands that the customer always comes first. This, we believe, is why we’re so successful and customers show us such great loyalty.”

The Brogue Trader 27A Morgan Arcade, Cardiff CF10 1AF 0843 658 1812




Dash 2018





There’s really no better way of promoting a business or service than by word-of-mouth. Jayne Davies, 67 of Saron, Ammanford is more than happy to recommend Natural Therapist Angharad Evans of Penarth, after she helped her with her eczema which had plagued her since the age of three months old.


Why did you see the services of a Natural Therapist? I was looking for a Natural Therapist because conventional medicine was not working for me. How did you hear about Angharad? Two people that I know well recommended Angharad and, when I realized that I knew her, I got in contact. It was important to me that I knew of her and that she had been recommended but I had no idea how her therapy worked at that stage. I was desperate by now and as I had known Angharad since she was a child and knew her background I felt I had nothing to lose. What was the problem you were seeking help for? My issue is eczema, which first showed its symptoms when I was three months old. I believe I will always have it but hopefully now I will be able to keep it under control. During my lifetime it has appeared on most parts of my body from time to time but over the last three years it has come out all over my face, neck, chest and hands and it didn’t matter how often I used the steroid cream and moisturizer given to me by my GP, it never cleared.

How many sessions did you have with Angharad? I have had eight sessions between February and July of this year and I feel that my problem has been resolved, but I am not so naive as to think that it will not come back if I don’t keep to the diet and not go back to see her around three or four times a year for check-ups. How has this issue affected your life? My skin was sore and itchy It kept me awake at night. I was agitated and uncomfortable. At times I got quite depressed and irritable. I was embarrassed by my looks. How are you now after working with Angharad? I am back to myself again. The skin on my face is clear, which is very important to me, and there is no eczema on my body at all for the first time in years. I am realistic enough to realize that this might not always be the case but at least now there is something I can do if I get a flare up.

I have also benefited in other ways from the treatment. I sleep better. I don’t have hot flushes anymore and I have more energy, plus I have lost weight and I don’t have food cravings. 15

Was the treatment worth the money? The treatment isn’t cheap but it has worked and so I feel it has been well worth the money. Did you enjoy working with Angharad? Very much so. She has taken time to explain to me how the treatment works and, although it is not a conventional treatment, I completely understand how it works now. I have had to work hard with Angharad and the first few weeks were difficult because I had to change the way that I eat. I had to cut a lot of foods from my diet, but the funny thing is. I don’t miss them at all. I am more than happy to recommend Angharad and her naturopathy to others and have already done so.

“I am committed to providing a personalised, holistic treatment.” 07739 210291 AngharadsNaturalTherapy

City Life popped in to congratulate owner Bob Rice of the iconic and popular Castle Welsh Crafts on Castle Street, on the shop’s 40th anniversary and, of course, to talk about all things Welsh and wonderful.


Congratulations on your anniversary. How long have you been in business? It’s been forty years flying the flag! Castle Welsh Crafts is a family run business. Who is involved and what are their roles? That would be myself and my daughter Charlotte. Charlotte joined the business fifteen years ago and is responsible for running the shop alongside me. She has also taken on more of the buying responsibilities as she has a very good eye and has learned over the years exactly what customers want. We are lucky to be supported by a loyal team including Nancy Charles who has been serving our customers for over 25 years. Most of our team are long serving but she has been a part of our business family the longest. What does running a family business mean to you and your customers? Personally, it’s about creating longevity for the business and securing a future for Charlotte.

We are fortunate that people do like to support local businesses. They like the personal service and attention that they can’t get online. Who are your customers? We have customers of all ages from both the local community and from all over the world. They love the warm, Welsh welcome they receive. I had a fellow in his late 40s who came in with his kids and said that he remembered me serving him when he was a boy! What products do you offer? This is a big shop, so we can offer an extensive range of gifts to suit all tastes and purse strings; from Welsh chocolates and fudge to fridge magnets, Welsh tea towels and t-shirts, hand-made glass figurines, dragon pendants, hand-made Welsh jewellery and, not forgetting our hand thrown pottery and lovespoons. Some of our jewellery has been designed by and produced by someone who used to be a monk on Caldey Island. Most of our gifts are authentically Welsh and made in Wales. We source locally wherever possible. 16

What generally brings customers in? Our position bang opposite the entrance to Cardiff Castle means that visitors see our flags flying and come across to buy their gifts. They love to learn a bit more about Cardiff and Wales and we are happy to oblige. We happily demonstrate how to pronounce Llanfairpwllgwyngyll... or take photos underneath the giant lovespoon. What are your best sellers at this time of the year? Our pen sets and Welsh jewellery, lovespoons, pendants and cufflinks are very popular. These make perfect gifts for friends and family, especially expats. There is no one more patriotic than Welsh people living abroad. It is all about the Hiraeth! Your lovespoons are pretty special. They are! We have a dedicated lovespoon gallery and are proud to display an extremely large lovespoon carved locally during the ‘90s. It is around 27 feet long and is quite an attraction.

An exceptional carver, who produced the wooden archway to out lovespoon gallery. also produced a magnificent spoon for the Her Royal Highness the Queen Mother and for the Empress of Japan. Our latest royal encounter was a private visit from members of the Thai Royal family. What do you think makes Castle Welsh Gifts special? We have a family run ethos. We love to serve our customers and have a laugh and a joke with them. We value them as much today as when I started a smaller shop in the arcade in 1978 and that won’t stop. I have always had a firm policy when it comes to pricing our products, “If I won’t pay it, then I won’t charge it.” Luckily Charlotte shares the same values. Everyone leaves with a gorgeous Welsh gift and a smile!

Castle Welsh Crafts 1-3 Castle Street, Cardiff CF10 1BS 029 2034 3038

“Most of our gifts are authentically Welsh and made in Wales. We source locally wherever possible.” 17

Penarth Fashion Week was born to raise money for the much-needed support for the local RNLI, a charity that saves lives at sea every day. Last year the event raised £11,500 and they would love to do the same this year.

PENARTH FASHION WEEK 2018 Local independent businesses including boutiques, hair designers, food establishments, make-up artists, florists, Snowcat Cinema, Leisure Centre and the local book shop and members of Penarth RNLI got together to launch the second Penarth Fashion Week in aid of the RNLI which this year runs from 6th until 21st October.

There was an evening of Fashion and Fizz at The Queen B with arrival drinks served at Willmore’s 1938, and Refresh Clinic held an open evening. Afternoon Tea was served at Holm House with a fashion show by The Edinburgh Woollen Mill Group and there was a beauty workshop held at Ener-chi Organics. Crepe Escape held an 80s theme fashion party.

The launch evening culminated with the unveiling of a second RNLI dress designed and made by Georgina-Grace Smith and her mum Angie Smith and worn by Mia Francis. This year we were very lucky to have a second outfit designed and made by Elissa Mancusso, she designed a one-piece navy swim suit with an RNLI puffa jacket worn by both Lucy Flynn and Lauren King. The launch event was hosted by Etc. Penarth, a very glamourous venue for a glamorous affair. This year there were sixteen events during the fourteen day period which started with a Bollywood Boogie dinner and dance at the Pier Pavilion with celebrity chef Stephen Gomes.

Snowcat Cinema showed two films where a donation from the ticket sale was donated to the RNLI. The films shown were A Devil Wears Prada and Blow Up. Amorio Beauty held an evening of hair and make-up demonstrations. Griffin Books hosted story time with Malachy Doyle who read Molly and the Stormy Sea. Willmore’s 1938 hosted a fish supper. Coffee#1 hosted a coffee tasting session.

“The launch evening culminated with the unveiling of a second RNLI dress.”

Skin analysis and mole checks were available at Dawn Clinic and both Blu Hair Design and SOHO Hairdressing hosted evenings of hair and beauty. Then, on the final weekend, the Penarth RNLI station was transformed again by the crew and staff of C3i and Events at Room 11 on the Saturday to make the station into a catwalk for the Lifeboat Fashion Show supported by The Queen B, Blu Hair Design and 18

Hair or Makeup with the after party at Penarth Yacht Club. The transformed station was then used as a venue for the James Sommerin Dinner on the Sunday evening which closed the eventful Fashion extravaganza. Along with the individual events, Bar 44, Etc and Willmore’s 1938 also gave donations to the RNLI during Fashion Week based on sales of certain food and drink and Coffee #1 sold gingerbread men in aid of the RNLI until the end of October. Penarth Lifeboat station is one of the busiest in Wales, and the volunteer crews attend between 60 to 70 shouts on average each year. Calls can be to broken down vessels, first aid emergencies at sea, missing people searches and to assist people cut off by the tide - the Bristol Channel having the second largest tidal range in the world. Images by

Every restaurant can owe its good reputation to the head chef. That certainly can be said of John Quill, Executive Head Chef at The Raglans Restaurant and Burgess Bar at The Copthorne Hotel in Culverhouse Cross.


Vale Life caught up with John, 46, to find out about his role at the restaurant and his passion for the job. What is your career history? I trained to be a chef in 1992 in Surrey and then went on to work for large corporate companies at senior management level including Compass and Diageo. Unfortunately, in 2006 my youngest daughter was found to have cancer and, during her treatment, I gave up my senior management role to become an agency chef so that I could work around her treatment. Now back in chef whites, I worked the agency chef circuit gaining a name for myself and a good reputation working at some of south Wales highest profile locations. In 2008 I started my own Private Chef and Consultancy business catering for business and private clients across south Wales, Birmingham, London and Essex including TV Personalities, professional sportsmen and women.

In 2017 I was approached to become the Consultant Chef at The Vale Resort and consequently assisted in increasing their food hygiene ratings across the resort, implementation of new menus, systems and improvements to the overall operational standards delivered. In May 2018 I took over as The Executive Head Chef here at The Copthorne in Cardiff. I am a member of The Culinary Association of Wales, an Associate Member of The British Culinary Federation, was National Chef of Wales Semi Finalist in 2012, 2014 and 2016 and was a National Chef of Wales Finalist in this year’s competition.

I spent 12 months living in Australia and travelled to Hong King and UAE where I was able to learn even more about different styles of cooking. Due to some of the requirements of my professional sports clients, I have had to learn and become fully proficient in the planning and preparation of the Paleo Diet. I love Fusion style cooking and mixing flavours from all over the world along with traditional European and British Cuisine.

How long have you worked at The Copthorne? I took over at The Copthorne three months ago.

What is the style of cooking at Raglans? British, European and Fusion.

What skills are you bringing to the kitchen? I’ve been blessed to have grown up in a multicultural community where I was able to learn about the flavours and preparation of Caribbean, Asian, Chinese, Indian, Portuguese and European Cuisine.

“We have stunning lake views and a friendly atmosphere which is enjoyed by many.” 20

How many are in your brigade? There are eight members of my brigade.

Have you made any changes to the menu? I have made some changes to the current menu, including a Brunch Menu which will include several favourites including Smashed Avocado and Smoked Salmon on Bloomer bread and our very own Croque Monsieur. There are Sharing Platters including Vegan Tapas and our Spicy Nachos. Our grill section will now be offering an 8oz Rump Steak and King Prawn Surf ‘n Turf and there is also the option to enjoy The Copthorne Mixed Grill for those with a larger appetite.

Our main courses now include a Seafood Linguine, an Asparagus and Perl Las Risotto and customers have the option to add fresh chicken or king prawns to our Spicy Singapore Vegetable Noodles. There will be a weekly specials menu which will include seasonal specials such as Welsh Lamb and Wild Boar. Where do you source your produce? Why does locally grown, seasonal, fresh produce mean so much to you? The use of the freshest possible ingredients means everything to me as it means that we can deliver the best possible food on every plate. I consciously support the use of local Welsh and British Produce with our menus in support of local businesses and farmers across the country. I understand that there will be changes to the way in which the restaurant looks. Please tell us more. The Raglans Restaurant and The Burges Bar & Lounge are both scheduled a complete refurbishment later this year or early 2019, which I am excited about. We will be relaunching the restaurant with an amazing new menu following the refurbishment.

Is the restaurant open to nonresidents? The restaurant is very much open to non-residents and I would like to invite everyone to come and sample the food and atmosphere here at The Copthorne Hotel, Raglans Restaurant and The Burges Bar & Lounge. We are situated in a prime location, on main routes in and out of Cardiff, we have parking for over 200 vehicles and we have our very own lake.

Would you say you were competitively priced? Absolutely, we offer great food, great service and value for money.

What is your Sunday lunch offering? Our Sunday Lunch offer is Three Courses for £19.95. We offer Traditional Roast Beef, Roast Chicken or Roast Pork with our Classic Yorkshire Pudding, Roast Potatoes, Roasted Vegetables, Cauliflower and Broccoli Cheese, Vegetable Crisps and very own Copthorne Jus.

Vale Life readers quoting ‘VLC1’ will receive a 25% discount on restaurant bookings until 30th November 2018

What about Christmas and New Year? We will be serving our Festive Afternoon Tea throughout December between 1200noon and 4pm each day and have Winter Wonderland Party Nights and Cabaret Christmas Lunches also available throughout the month of December. We are taking bookings for Christmas Day Lunch and will be seeing in the New Year in style with our New Year’s Eve Gala Dinner Menu. 21

What do you think makes dining at Raglans, Copthorne special? We have a great new menu, our front-ofhouse deliver service which is second to none, we have stunning lake views and a friendly atmosphere which is enjoyed by many.

The Copthorne Hotel Copthorne Way Culverhouse Cross Cardiff CF5 6DH 029 2059 9100 @copthornecardiff

Everyone is looking for therapies or lifestyle changes that could improve their health. Ozone therapy is a new one to us so we talked to Oscar Matsungo of the Ozone Therapy Wellness Centre in Cathays to find out more.


What is Ozone Therapy and how does it work? Ozone therapy is a regenerative therapy and refers to the process of administering ozone gas into the body to treat a disease/condition or wound. It is a natural solution that utilizes the body’s own healing process to repair damaged tissue, and bridges the gap between non-operative treatments and surgery. Ozone is a colourless gas made up of three atoms of oxygen (O3). Since 1870s ozone has been used to treat medical conditions by stimulating the immune system. Furthermore it has been used to disinfect and treat diseases and conditions. Ozone Therapy stimulates the uptake of oxygen by stimulating the DPG (diphosphoglycerate) enzyme. The DPG controls the movement of oxygen from red blood cells to body tissues. It supports the release of oxygen from the hemoglobin molecule so that it can be used by the cell. When cells get the optimal amount of oxygen and function properly, they help to prevent or inhibit disease. What are the claimed benefits of Ozone therapy? n Anti-aging n Strengthens the immune system n Detoxifies and neutralises viruses, bacteria and fungi n Kills cancer cells n It is anti-inflammatory and relieves pain n Expedites post-surgery healing n Decreases fat / improves metabolism n Improves blood circulation

When should one have ozone therapy? The human body is an exceptional and complex machine. Like all machines the body needs servicing (dusting, changing of oil, etc) to ensure optimum functioning. There is no stipulated time to have ozone therapy. However, it is better to have regular therapy to boost wellness and prevent infections. There are notable hot spots such as winter season which elevate the infection levels and as such preventative therapy is encouraged. Is it in any way painful? Ozone therapy has been utilised and heavily studied for more than a century. Its effects are proven, consistent, safe and with minimal and preventable side effects. Ozone therapy is not in any way painful. How long does a session take? A typical ozone therapy session last 30 minutes. Is it expensive? While a single session may appear costly to the average household, the longterm health benefits far outweigh the financial cost. Moreover, our interest in the wellbeing of our local customers has meant that our prices are cheaper than in most places in the UK. We at Ozone Therapy Wellness Centre are very compassionate and it is reason we invested in the technology because we believe in health and wellness for all and as such our prices reflect that. We welcome people to come and experience this technology. 22

Are there any health risks? Uncontrolled inhalation of ozone can cause chest pain, coughing, shortness of breath and throat irritation. Inhalation of ozone may also worsen chronic respiratory diseases such as asthma and compromise the ability of the body to fight respiratory infections. However, the chance of inhaling ozone while undergoing therapy is negligible. We at Ozone Therapy Wellness Centre take strict precautions to prevent you from inhaling ozone. Your health, wellness and safety is our priority. Do you have a website? Where can readers find out more? Certainly we have a website ( that provides you with lots of information on ozone therapy and the various treatments we provide. While you are on the website you can connect with us too via the chat button. Apart from gaining information about the therapies we provide, you will be able to book an appointment convenient for yourself.

Ozone Therapy Wellness Centre 6A Dalcross Street, Cathays Cardiff CF24 4UB You can call or text on 07810 540488 Readers are always advised to research any treatment carefully and consult a doctor before undertaking any health related procedure or therapy. City Life cannot endorse any treatment. This advertorial is for information purposes only.

Josh Llewellyn-Jones, the man who went from a 10% chance of survival to exercising non-stop for 24 hours has his sights on a world record.

In 1987, Josh was born with cystic fibrosis. The life-limiting genetic condition meant that his lungs and digestive system can become clogged and he wasn’t expected to make it through the night. He defied expectations then and he’s still doing it today. Thirty-one years later, Josh wasn’t content with becoming one of only five people in the world to complete the World Physical Fitness Challenge in 2017. Now he wants to push himself even further. As part of the 24hrs4cf event in 2017, Josh, from Cardiff, exercised non-stop for 24 hours to raise awareness and money for cystic fibrosis. He lifted 100 tonnes, cycled 100 miles, rowed twenty miles, ran ten miles, cross-trained for ten miles, swam two miles, and completed 3,000 sit-ups, 1,000 press ups and 1,000 squats. Across social media, the 24hrs4cf event reached eight million people all over the world and inspired many people living with cystic fibrosis.

24HRS4CF Along with his family, Josh has helped raise over £700,000 for cystic fibrosis charities and he’s now set up his own charity to encourage children with cystic fibrosis to exercise called CF Warriors. Josh explains, “My hope is, if more children get involved in sporting activities we can increase their life expectancy, just like I have.”

Following on from the success of 2017, Josh has his sights on lifting 1,000,000 kilos in 24 hours which will be the most anyone has ever lifted in a day. That’s the equivalent of three Boeing 747s and he’ll have to average 700 kilos per minute to reach his target. It took place at RAF St Athan on 29th September, 2018. One aspect of 24hrs4cf was to raise the general awareness about cystic fibrosis but, for Josh, his main aim was always to get people with CF exercising. “It’s what’s kept me alive,” he explains. “At 31, statistics show that I shouldn’t be very well at all but I’m the fittest I’ve ever been. I never imagined that the message would reach so many people in year one. 23

The bar has been set high for year two but I like a challenge!

“We’ve had a fantastic result by securing RAF St Athan for this world record attempt and I even have two ex-marines on my training team to help get me through. The setting is absolutely perfect and the team over there are fully behind me in wanting to reach even more than the 8 million people we did last year!”

“Josh has his sights on lifting 1,000,000 kilos in 24 hours which ” To find out more about 24hrs4cf and Josh’s world record attempt, visit @JoshLJ24 @JoshLJ24 @JoshLJ24

When Suzy Parkes and Welsh rugby player Hadleigh Parkes needed outfits for their recent wedding, their choice of designers was almost poles apart. Vale Life caught up with the happy couple to find out more.


Where did you meet? We met through some mutual friends, I was living with them and Hadleigh and his brother, who are originally from New Zealand, came around for dinner one night. We then met each other out one night and it all really started from there.

Where did you get your dress? Jane Yeh, a New Zealand designer, she was absolutely incredible!

Where did you choose to get married? We got married at Kauri Bay Boomrock, Clevedon, NZ. It is a beautiful lodge located just outside of Auckland on a working sheep and beef farm. The venue provided buses for the guests from Auckland CBD and it allowed us to have both the ceremony and reception in one place. Kauri Bay Boomrock suited us perfectly because Hadleigh’s family is from a farm so being just outside Auckland we thought it really represented both of our families. We were so lucky because it was a beautiful NZ winter’s day and were able to get married outside, in front of the incredible view.

Why did you choose Hawkes for the suits? Hawkes was quickly becoming one of Hadleigh’s favourite shops in Cardiff. He had already purchased a couple of suits and shirts from Russell for a couple of weddings and they were always so helpful, the suits are great quality and always received multiple compliments when wearing them. Also something a bit different, not just standard suit and tie and Russell’s eye for detail is exceptional.

Where did you get the groom’s suit? And the suits for the men of the party? Hawkes, Morgan Arcade, Cardiff.

What was working with Russell from Hawkes like? More like working with an old mate, makes you feel so welcome - does not just talk suits you get into all sorts of conversations. Listens to your ideas/ wants and also suggests different options - at the end of the day he is the expert! Nothing was too much trouble either. Russell even gave us two pairs of pants to take back to NZ for one of the groomsmen as he didn’t trust his measurements he gave! What style of suits did you go for? Roy Robson - suits. Dark Blue with a multi-coloured tie to match the bridesmaids dark red dresses. How long did the suits take to make? The groomsmen were fitted/ adjustments made and within a week they were ready to be collected.

“Hawkes was quickly becoming one of Hadleigh’s favourite shops in Cardiff.” 24

Were you pleased with the outcome of the suits? Extremely pleased - the men all looked so smart in the suits, the groomsmen were absolutely stoked with them and they look great in the photos. How were they received on the day by guests? A couple of guests commented that they were the smartest suits they had seen so it doesn’t get much better than that. How did the wedding ceremony go? Where did you get married? The ceremony and reception were both at Kauri Bay Boomrock, Clevedon, NZ. We got an incredible winter’s day so were lucky enough to get married outside. Our celebrants were very good family friends of the Parkes, who have actually married all of Hadleigh’s brothers too so that was really special having them a part of our big day. Our oldest siblings signed the wedding register, and Hadleigh’s brother Scott did a reading.

If you could change anything about your day, what would it be? Would not change a thing - it was absolutely perfect. Did you go on honeymoon, if so where did you go? Straight after the wedding we headed down to the Parkes farm to spend some time with Hadleigh’s family and the nieces and nephews. I think the first night we slept for about 11 hours we were so exhausted! We then headed off to Borneo and Vietnam. We spent 8 days in Borneo – climbed Mt Kinabalu, snorkelling at Sipadan Island, going to see the orang-utans and enjoying the incredible cuisine. We then went to Vietnam for twelve days - managed to get to Hanoi, Sapa Valley and Hoi An. Loved hiring scooters, hitting the beach, shopping in the markets and enjoying cocktails on roof top bars watching the incredible sunsets. 25

How has married life changed you both? Honestly, not a lot! Life has returned to normal and we are back into routine work, gym, tennis etc. It is still exciting being able to introduce Hadleigh as my husband and have not got used to having a new name yet! See the full interview online at

Hawkes Bespoke Outfitters 37-39 Morgan Arcade Cardiff CF10 1AF 029 2037 3780

Kevin Moore’s passion for photography was ignited when his employer sent him on a photographic course. He hasn’t looked back and is happiest doing what he loves most - street photography around Cardiff and the Vale.

LIFE ON THE STREET When did you first become interested in photography? First became interested in photography in the early 1990s, (the job that I was doing at the time required that I became familiar with a camera). My employers sent me on a photographic course, covering the use of film and dark room procedures, as well as gaining an understanding of photographic techniques, light composition etc. This was my initiation into photography. Please describe your style of photography… Documentary would describe it best. This is what I attempt to do each time I walk the streets. I am documenting people and life. I spend my time walking the streets looking for a creative shot, an intriguing face, because the streets are where life is. What attracts you to street photography? The reason why I enjoy street photography is because it’s unpredictable, it is never the same.

On the street you work with whatever light is available, once you frame and compose an image, you either get it or it’s lost in a second and that moment has gone forever. Street photography for me is about telling a story about the people and the era that I live in. Everything from protests, parades, fashion, culture, the street is where the world shows its face, and where it comes alive. Street photography has such a wide meaning, it can cover so many different genres, and you mould it to your style of photography, but for me it’s about documenting life, people, and the environment they live in. What equipment do you use? I shoot in both digital and film - mostly black and white. I only ever use prime lenses, 28mm and 35mm are my lenses of choice. I choose these for a number of reasons, they are light, fast glass, and allow me to get close to whatever I’m photographing.

“It’s about documenting life.” 26

Which photographers inspire you? Do you have a few favourites? Street photographers work that has inspired me are Helen Levitt, Vivian Mayer, William Klein, also the work of Steve McCurry is incredible.

Have you exhibited your work? How could readers see it? I’m hoping to have an exhibition of my work in the near future. Watch this space.

Kevin Moore Documentary and Street Photography 07702 598445 You can find Kevin’s work on Instagram under Kevin Moore Street Photography

Being proprietor of one of South Wales’ premier hotels, you’d think Colin Rosenberg would have little time to spare to enjoy one of his favourite pastimes. On the contrary, he says it actually helps. City Life met Colin in his studio to find out more. Please tell us a little about yourself? Schooling was fun! I tackled A level art. I qualified and started life as a teacher but soon became a housemaster in an ‘approved school’ where I had a hostel of thirty troublesome and challenging teenage boys. It was a job I enjoyed. After that, becoming self employed we established and built-up a specialised group of nursing homes, eventually catering for some 300 patients and employed around 300 staff. Having sold the nursing homes, we purchased Miskin Manor out of receivership twenty-two years ago. It has been a labour of love. When did you become interested in art? Always interested in art - at A level and in college. Through the very many staff meetings, board meetings etc. in the various businesses, I would find myself ‘doodling’ and sketching small portraits of participants. On holidays, I will always take sketching materials and sit in cafes and restaurants and endeavour to capture the essence of unsuspecting customers, within a very short time frame. Similarly, sat on train journeys and spotting an interesting face further down the carriage - I will sketch them. Which artists or style of art do you like? There are so many styles and influences regarding portraits, but my top three would be Philip de Laszlo, John Singers Sargent and William Orpen. In the desire to ‘capture’ the nude, undoubtedly the works of Gustav Vigelard, the fabulous Norwegian sculptor, must be my greatest influence.

“My top three would be Philip de Laszlo, John Singers Sargent and William Orpen.”



“A portrait by Colin would be a great idea for an unique gift. For Christmas, birthday or, perhaps, celebrating a retirement.”

What is your favourite subject matter? I belonged to the Guild of Aviation Artists for a few years, as aviation has been a large slice of my life and, very often, we find ourselves in museums, painting the exhibits. I so enjoyed the air-cadet days too. Today it’s primarily aviation and portraits being favoured. Whereas I have very little understanding, conceptions, tolerance of abstract art, I enjoy the journey and challenge of wrestling with surrealistic art. What media do you use? Traditional oils (Old Holland) on canvas is, by far, my most favoured medium, after good old pencil and paper sketching. Watercolours I find difficult, especially when the colours decide to misbehave and go on walk-about! How long does it take to create a portrait? I can spend hours, or days, on a portrait - naturally, depending on size. Portraits are complex, challenging and frustrating - yet fulfilling. It’s all about problem solving. Is the nose too big? Ears to high? Eyes too far apart? etc. Colour too. Is there really that blue/that green in that face? Ethnic portraits are a delight and pose their own difficulties.

Have you, or are you painting anyone famous? I did a portrait of Prince Charles almost as a challenge to myself as I had a collection of old, coarse, worn, scraggy brushes to use and, surprisingly, it turned out better than I thought it would - very presentable and worthy of an expensive frame to hang. Jools Holland, Ruby Turner and the band stayed with us in the summer. After Jools saw the collection of portraits here, he agreed to be painted. The face is nearing completion. I now need to establish if he has a favourite shirt, tie, waistcoat etc in order to complete and deliver the finished product.

Costing of a portrait depends on how big? Head and shoulders, waist high, full length? Is it one person, or a couple? Oil on canvas? Pastels, pencils etc. Whichever is chosen, many hours/ days will be spent creating an image the sitter will be pleased to frame and hang ‘centre stage’. My studio here can allow peace and tranquillity (if required), or a background of jazz to create an environment conducive to allow me to engage and ‘capture’ and, hopefully, flatter the sitter.

Where can we see your work? The Portraits restaurant here at Miskin Manor has just become my gallery too. Recently re-decorated and utilising some thirty to forty portraits that sat on the floor of my studio. No lonely traveller could complain of eating alone. Do you accept commissions? How would we go about that? When I undertake commissions, it invariably involves sitting for an hour to commence, relying on photographs to address the clothing, surrounds etc. that can be done without the subject sitting. 30

Colin Rosenberg Miskin Manor 01443 224204

We first came across Jon a while back when he was curating a photography project. At the time we didn’t realise he was also a talented and prolific artist. We do now…


Please tell us a little about yourself? I live in Treforest with my partner Hel. We’ve lived here three years now and absolutely love it. Before that I lived in Cardiff for nineteen years, after moving there to study Art and Aesthetics at Howard Gardens in 1996. Before that I lived on a farm near Stratford on Avonbut I was born in West Yorkshire. I’ve lived in quite a few places. When did you become interested in art? I’ve literally drawn and painted for as long as I can remember. It’s always been a totally natural thing for me to pick something up and start making marks with it. I didn’t really have any art historical knowledge until starting in art college though - before that my influences started with Geoff Senior’s artwork in Transformers comic - and that was in 1986! My inspirations were cinema and TV, and they remain to be. Where did you train? Going to college in Leamington Spa is where it all started for me, at first to art classes when I was twelve or thirteen, and then doing A levels and the Foundation Course in Art and Design. Mid-Warwickshire College was an amazing place, and Leamington is a fantastic town. I made life-long friendships, and will never forget the mid 90s spent there.

What artists or style of art do you like? I have a list as long as your arm, but I mainly take inspiration from 20th century British art. I love Paul Nash, Lucian Freud, Francis Bacon and John Piper, but as I said I also take a lot of inspiration from cinema and TV. Pretty much everything I’ve ever learned came from TV. I think my work naturally fits into a narrative with those artists. What is your favourite subject matter? Light, and its depiction. I take a real interest and obsession in the characteristics of light, how it falls, and how it shapes things. I am also a photographer, so I utilise my skills there to get photos I can work from. I’m also very interested in pop culture, social history, and folklore.

Where can we see your work? For my paintings and drawings, mainly my Instagram feed. www.instagram. com/jon_pountney_artist and Twitter My other professional work is all on Do you accept commissions? How would we go about that? Yes, I generally paint from photographs that I’ve taken so if someone wanted me to paint something specific I’d take a photo of it first and work from that. It’s best to email me at jon@maxatt., tweet me, or DM me through Instagram.

What media do you use? Oil paint mainly - on paper. I use graphite mainly to draw with, as I like big strokes and to cover areas quickly; that has a life to it. I’ve just started using watercolours as an experiment.

“I’ve literally drawn and painted for as long as I can remember.” 32

Martin Briggs enjoyed a successful career as a financial advisor until his retirement 3 years ago. That work/life transition has allowed Martin to indulge in two of his passions - music and painting. City Life caught up with Martin at his Pontcanna studio.


We enter Martin’s studio and I’m immediately envious. It’s spacious, light and has a very cool and lived-in artist vibe. I could easily live there - it’s everything a want-to-be artist like me yearns for. The next thing that strikes me is the body of work; every available surface is covered with doodles, sketches, halffinished canvasses and rows of finished artworks that give you a glimpse of just how busy he’s been. I like Martin’s work. I’ve had a painting of his hanging over my stairs for the best part of fifteen years. He is, and always has been, a talented artist. I’ve watched his confidence grow over the years. They say you shouldn’t invest in art but buy it because you like it. That’s always been my philosophy but I can’t help thinking one day, Martin could become very collectable indeed. I believe he’s certainly “one to watch”. 34

His recent show at Cardiff MADE was a good example of not only how enthusiastic he is about his painting but also how professional he is. Martin understands the importance of marketing - he’s confident talking about his work and he “gets” art, being a collector of other artists’ work. He’s a gallery owners dream and a fine addition to what appears to be an emerging Cardiff, if not Welsh, art scene. He has quickly established himself among the Kings Road Artists and he is an active member of Printhaus. He has had work in group and solo shows most months over the last three years and has built a core following of collectors who have bought multiple pieces. He says that his paintings and prints are still exploratory and developmental, but with two major solo shows this autumn it is clear that he is working with

confidence and a strong, identifiable sense of style is emerging. To research one of the larger paintings (Quercus Lapsus), Martin booked into the Gliffaes Country House Hotel just outside Crickhowell on the banks of the Usk. “The hotel is fabulous,” he says. “The owners have a good art collection on display. Brilliant weather allowed me to wander with my sketchbook. What really drew my attention were some giant fallen oaks is various stages of decay. One of them, by the river bank, became my subject. Talk about spirit of place, this was an enduring tragedy.” His large, hung canvases would make a dramatic statement in any office reception or grand hotel room and his smaller scale paintings and prints bring would bring a point of focus to any living room. 35

Martin Briggs 07816 906330 martin-briggs Martin Briggs latest work can be viewed at Sustainable Studio 7 Curran Road Cardiff CF10 5NE Contact Julia or Sarah Thursday 2 to Friday 9 November 2018 Call Martin on 07816 906330 for access Private View Saturday 3 November 2018 2-5pm

WeFix has brought its manufacturer-approved mobile smartphone and tablet repair service to Cardiff and, having tried it for ourselves, we can definitely endorse it.



WeFix is the UK’s only manufacturerapproved mobile smartphone and tablet repairer. The service has been launched in the Cardiff area as part of a phased roll-out, which will see WeFix operating UK-wide by the end of the year. Customers can book online at by simply entering their postcode, and device details, and choosing their preferred appointment time. Repairing Samsung and Apple devices, WeFix is the UK’s only Samsungapproved mobile repairer, and is on target to have more than fifty mobile workshops on the road by the end of the year. The company was founded by WeFix MD Oliver Murphy, who in 2014 secured a £50k investment from Dragons’ Den entrepreneur Kelly Hoppen.

The company later bought back Hoppen’s shares, before securing investment to set it on the road to its rapid expansion. All WeFix mobile workshops are fitted to manufacturer-approved specification with genuine Samsung parts, specialist equipment and trained engineers. Oliver said: “We are delighted to bring WeFix to Cardiff, offering a new level of service and value to customers, making repairs both quick and easy. The WeFix team of technicians is Samsung-trained, delivering the highest standards of know-how and ability along with the convenience of having your device repaired at home or at work.”

“More than fifty mobile workshops on the road.” 36

Book online at

SEABREEZE HOMES Seabreeze Homes’ reputation speaks for itself. With a 5-star rating on many review sites, the team put great service at the heart of the company’s ethos.

Here is what one delighted reviewer said recently. “A lovely and friendly estate agent, who was very helpful and calm when dealing with all manner of difficult situations. They shielded us from the unnecessary pressures given by our purchasers, making the process of selling our house much better than it could have been given the circumstances. Always keeping us up-to-date with the day to day happenings which we thoroughly appreciated. It’s been nice to deal with

a small but knowledgeable company, who gave a more personal service rather than use one of the bigger companies who don’t get to know you or your house. Would use again without question.”

Seabreeze Homes Sales Lettings Management 17 Glebe Street, Penarth CF64 1ED 029 2070 7064

Russell Bright 5*

Seabreeze Homes were also awarded best independent Estate Agent in south Wales 2018 by the UK Enterprise Awards which is an accolade they are justifiably proud of. 37


Vernon W Jones is an artist specialising in seascapes which he exhibits both in Wales, the UK and internationally. We’ve long been fans of Vernon’s work so we caught up with him between exhibitions to find out a little more about Vernon and his thoughts on art and creativity.


Vernon, please tell us a little about yourself? I was born in Pontypool in 1972, attended all my school life in Pontypool - also my first college studying a BTEC General Art and Design course, which led me onto another BTEC course at HND level at CCTA (Carmarthen College of technology and art) completed in 1994. Have you always painted seascapes? It has been a winding road, but I eventually found myself as a fine artist specialising in seascape art, starting along this path in 2003. How do people react when you tell them you ‘art’ for a living? I am well aware of some of the attitudes that people have towards art, and the arts in general. Some people say things like “it’s a waste of time”, or “get a real job!” I can only speak for myself and my wife, who is a Macedonian artist exhibiting similarly to myself, we work hard and put in many hours to create our works, and work very hard to promote them.

It is something that is certainly not easy on many levels, but it has its rewards and it’s also something that we feel we are made to do; it’s in our blood so to speak. Do you think you have grown as an artist over the years? Do you think your life has changed? As I have progressed as an Artist I have had a lot of time to think about the art I create and why I do it. Before painting seascapes I was producing more Illustrative and figurative work, specializing in pencil. In 2003 I made a decision for a complete subject change and media change to oil, both very challenging but I stuck at it and studied hard to overcome these challenges. 3 years ago I decided to use acrylic, finding them useful above all for expression in my work, something I wanted to explore. There are new projects that I aim to begin soon that will involve painting with the oils again that I am looking forwards to. So yes, I think I have grown both in my thoughts and techniques over the years. 40

Do you think society values art and the arts enough? The fact is artists of one form or another produce art that is all around us, on us and it influences almost everything that we do, whether they are respected or not by the public. I think most people don’t really give it much thought! Try to imagine the world around us without art and design. How would your clothes look? What you would sit on? What would your home look like? The taps in your kitchen, the tiles on your floor, the light shades in your living room. Would you even have some of those things if there wasn’t someone to design and produce them? Art is everywhere! Do you think creativity is inside everyone? Creativity for me is linked to survival in its deepest sense, and is not only sitting down with a box of crayons to make a drawing or building a cow from paper and glue! The importance of why we feel we need to pick up a crayon or start dancing as infants seems like

a response of being who and what we are. There are deeper questions that could be explored as to why we do this, ancestral memories perhaps? For whatever reason, it is inside us! I met some musicians that wanted to find the origins of music in Belgium many years ago, the sound of rain drops, stones rolling, footsteps, a heart beating. They built such amazing instruments such as stilt-a-phones, a revolving harp, a ping-pong table with notes everywhere on its surface. The music that these people created was incredible. The positive things that can be done are without end. Talent I believe can be hidden away, never used, never nurtured depending on what circumstances a person may find themselves in. Some may never have the chance to use the materials that are on offer, to use a studio to learn dance, to learn to play music, to learn to draw and paint etc. Then there is the other side - for teachers to be able to pass on knowledge, another important part of

our evolution. I have taught a little in my life, and it’s a great feeling to be able to pass on knowledge. I think that there are those who have that in their blood. But, of course, there needs to be somewhere to do these things, a place that people on both sides can go to for the reason of being taught and also to teach. Do you think people, and society in general, would benefit if they could express themselves more? Expressing ourselves is important; to sing, to dance, to create, and with guidance those feelings can be directed towards greatness, things that those people never thought they could do which, in turn, is put back into society, into our world. Others can be inspired, given hope and a breath of air that provides enough courage to try it for themselves. There may be a genius sitting right now at home doodling, or strumming on a guitar in their bedroom. Dreams can be fulfilled, dreams give hope and with courage and determination and those behind 41

them giving them confidence and encouragement, who knows what can be achieved! On another level it may be enough that someone creates and learns to express themselves just for themselves, which is also important too. That person could create something that inspires another. It’s like water trails, pathways... and it doesn’t really matter how, it simply matters that it does! Vernon accepts commissions. His next exhibition will be in in Scotland, Inverness in September. You can also visit his news section on his website and there is also a shop there. Always good to give Vernon a call as he is working constantly and stock changes quickly. He is in high demand internationally. Vernon W Jones - Artist +44 7963 297 363

MITCHELL E VANS Mitchell Evans Architects have recently opened their new office in Cowbridge. Vale Life dropped in to find out more about this dynamic, award-winning practice. We talked to Associate and architect Ian Jenkins. Please tell us about your background? I was born in Bridgend, and lived with my family in Kenfig Hill before going off to university at nineteen years old. Following my time at university in Oxford and Portsmouth, I started work for Mitchell Evans Architects in August 1998 as an architectural assistant at their offices in Guildford, Surrey. I got married and we had our first daughter, and, with news that our second daughter was due in the Autumn of 2008, we moved back to Bridgend to be closer to family. I have continued to work for Mitchell Evans Architects since the move back to Wales, and in conjunction with the practice partners, Ian Bocutt and Toby Howell, we have decided that this is the right time and Cowbridge the right place to formally establish an office in south Wales. When did you know you wanted to be an architect? My father worked in the building industry and I became interested in buildings and design.

By the end of comprehensive school I knew that I wanted to go into building studies/architecture and undertook a two year course in Bridgend Technical College completing a BTEC in Building Studies. Where did you train to be an architect. Is it a long process? I undertook my degree in Architecture at Oxford Brookes University (Part 1), my post graduate diploma in Portsmouth University (Part 2) and my professional exams and interviews at South Bank University London (Part 3). It is a very long process to become an RIBA chartered Architect as in addition to the university courses, which takes six years, a minimum of two years practical experience in an architects practice is required. What kind of properties and projects do you work on? We work on a wide range of properties and projects, but our main focus 42

and expertise is in the high quality residential market providing bespoke design solutions for private clients. The type of properties and projects include new build, extensions and renovations of existing properties, and works to listed buildings. Our projects typically range from £150,000 contract value up to £10 million, with the vast majority falling between £250,000 and £750,000. We do also work for small developers with projects of up to fifty houses where a bespoke design is the focus. We have also worked on commercial and community projects including churches, sports clubs and golf clubs. We also specialise in disability projects, and have undertaken a number of new build homes and extensions and adaptions of existing properties providing the specialist accommodation required, and working closely with the client’s Occupational Therapists and Case Managers.

Is the initial consultation free? We provide an initial free of charge consultation where we are more than happy to look at a property or site with an owner or prospective purchaser to discuss the potential development opportunities, and provide advice in relation to local planning policies. What geographical areas does your practice cover? Our office is situated in the centre of Cowbridge so we are perfectly placed to provide our services to the Vale of Glamorgan, Cardiff, South Wales and the South West of England. Our head office is located in Godalming, Surrey, with a further office on the Isle Of Wight so we can also undertake projects in the South and South East of England. What sort of clients do you work with? The majority of our clients are private commissions with individuals and families looking for a bespoke solution

and design for a family home. We also work with small scale developers on residential projects, or institutions such as churches or private clubs and societies. What would your dream project look like? One of my main inspirations during my architectural studies was the Swiss architect Le Corbusier, who pioneered modern architecture in the 1920s with individual houses for private clients. The classic white box architecture inspired many future generations and a refined current day interpretation fused with modern technology overlooking Ogmore beach would be a perfect project and family home. What do you do to relax outside of work? I enjoy swimming, walking and cycling, and also watch Bridgend Rugby Club when time allows. I have two daughters of twelve and ten years old who are members of Pen-Y-Bont Surf Life Saving 43

Club, so during the summer months most of our weekends are spent at Ogmore beach. We also have a nine month old cocker spaniel called Lola who fits in very well with our lifestyle.

Ian R Jenkins BA (Hons), Dip Arch, RIBA Mitchell Evans Architects Office 3A, Britannia House, Penny Lane Cowbridge, Vale Of Glamorgan CF71 7EG 01446 772058

The Temple of Peace is different to most venues you can hire in Cardiff. It is not owned by a private business, but managed by a charity ‘The Welsh Centre for International Affairs’ and is home to seven other charitable organisations. Venue Manager, Emily Williams, tells us more.

TEMPLE OF PEACE So when you book your wedding, engagement party, conference or business meeting with us, your money contributes towards not just our magnificent building but also the charity’s work in supporting international development, peace, human rights and global education. With your money you are directly helping us to create a fairer and more peaceful world.

The Temple was opened eighty years ago on 23rd November 1938 by Mrs Minnie James of Dowlais, who had lost three sons in the First World War and represented the war-bereaved mothers of Wales. Lord Davies built the Temple of Peace and Health to provide a focal point and symbol for Welsh people’s concern for international peace. It therefore became the home of the League of Nations Union, a voluntary organisation which supported the League’s work to preserve peace worldwide which has now developed into the WCIA.

This November marks 100 years since the end of World War One, as well as the 80th anniversary of the opening of the Temple of Peace which stands as a memorial ‘to those men and women of all nations who gave their lives in the war that was to end war’. We are celebrating with a whole month of #Temple80 events and exhibitions that are open to the public. Venue Manager Emily Williams says “Our core values are protecting human rights, promoting peace and sustainability which then supports everyone in Wales to play their role as global citizens. This is reflected in how we run the venue. We carefully source our suppliers, looking for those who take their responsibilities to the environment seriously and who make a positive contribution to the communities around them.” The charities that work here focus on raising awareness of global issues among the people of Wales, creating innovative solutions for communities 44

“Our core values are protecting human rights, promoting peace and sustainability” living in poverty and act as a forum for individuals and organisations in Wales to exchange ideas, build partnerships, and work towards common goals. The Temple can, and has been, used for a variety of events and ideas. From debates, conferences and meetings to yoga classes, weddings and filming for TV shows. We can provide a unique venue and experience for your needs.

Emily Williams, Venue Manager Welsh Centre for International Affairs Canolfan Materion Rhyngwladol Cymru 029 2082 1052


Charlotte’s Web Jewellery Rajput Empowerment Spinning Ring £75.00 / Rajput Empowerment Earrings £40.00

Azzaro Wanted by Night (for men) vailable now 50ml Eau de Parfum £46, 100ml Eau de Parfum £63

Aura Mugler Eau de Toilette – 30ml £42, 50ml £60 and 90ml £75 Available from department stores nationwide

Favourite T HINGS... MY

Here’s a roundup of some of the lovely things that have caught our eye this autumn...

Chocolates from the Chococo’s Halloween range for 2018 Colourful Chocolate Skull £15 Chocolate Skull Bar £8

Origins Ginzing On-The-Go Refreshing Eye Cream to Brighten and Depuff Available nationwide and at £16.50

From £22. Various colours available from

Jo Malone - Honeysuckle & Davana: A happy new floral RRP from Cologne 100ml £94 / Cologne 30ml £47 / Home Candle 200g £47

Sisleÿa L’Intégral Firming Concentrated Serum Price: £350 / Le Phyto Rouge (20 shades) £38 Stylo Lumiere (4 shades) £41.50 / Stockist:

You know that feeling? You notice your sleeves are just a little too short, and your cartoon rabbit socks are clearly on show below your trouser legs? It’s probably a sign you’ve outgrown your current outfit. A sign that it’s time to change.


At Lewis Ballard Accountants these signs were clear to see. We kept growing. Yet we were still determined to give the exceptional customer service we’re so proud of. It was a challenge not to spread ourselves too thin.

Under Lewis Ballard, Harris and Co are evolving, ditching paper in favour of, not only the digital practices of modern accountancy, but the cloud accounting and forecasting skills of the future. We’ve shown them Xero and 4sight and it’s love at first sight.

We needed a change and when we had an opportunity we grabbed it with both hands! Fortunately, they grabbed back.

Harris and Co are bringing so much to the table. A small team of 7 with the combined experience of over a hundred years, they have a lot to show us.

Lewis Ballard and Harris and Co Consulting have come together to build a brilliant business, bringing years of experience and youthful digital expertise together. Giving clients a new level of business support and tax advice to really drive their businesses forward.

“We’re long established locally and nationally.”

“We all see this as a great move for everyone at Lewis Ballard, Harris and Co and both sets of clients.” explains Neil Ballard MD. “We’re long established locally and nationally, as innovative and proactive accountants, with a young, dynamic team. By bringing the more mature Harris and Co team on board we are 48

creating a perfect balance between youth and experience to benefit everyone involved. We welcomed Mervyn and Kath Harris and their team to Celtic House on the 1st September 2018 and are certain everyone will soon benefit from the greater strength in depth on offer.” Tax specialist Kathryn Harris MD agrees “This move creates a sensational opportunity to provide added strength in depth to both businesses from which our current and future clients will benefit enormously.” Mervyn Harris Strategic Director adds “From the outset we have endeavoured to create a client focussed business and to ensure we’re fully up to date with technology as well as best accounting and tax practices for the benefit of all of our combined clients.

This exciting opportunity creates a 25+ strong practice providing a first-class service at exceptional value.” “The Harris and Co team will continue to work with their existing clients, who will now benefit from the digital wizardry of our amazing team. And our team and clients will benefit from the kind of guidance and expertise that only years of experience can bring. It really is a win win all round!” Jan Ballard HR Director confirms, adding with a smile “Not to dress it up too much - We saw the signs, changed the outfit and now we’re a perfect fit for all your accountancy and tax needs!”

Lewis Ballard Celtic House, Caxton Place Pentwyn, Cardiff CF23 8HA 02920 735502

Are you looking to change for the better too? Give us a ring on 02920735502 now, our first meeting is free! 49

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New Winter Stock Now Available Why not treat yourselves & your loved ones to a spa for Christmas!

Endless Pools | Coast Spas & Swimspas | Hydrotherapy | Fitness & Wellness Accessories | Chemicals | Eco Products | Servicing & Maintenance Swimming & Triathlon Coaching Venue

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Stylish age-exclusive living in a tranquil Dinas Powys garden setting

Prices from ÂŁ275,000



est 1934

BESPOKE SOFAS & CHAIRS We offer bespoke sofas and chairs in any size and design with fabrics to suit you and your lifestyle.

RE-UPHOLSTERY SPECIALISTS Breathe life back into a treasured piece of furniture so that you can love it all over again.

Banthorpe House, Crosby Yard, Bridgend CF31 1JZ Open Monday to Saturday 9am – 5pm


MADE-TO-MEASURE CURTAINS & PELMETS Whether it’s elegant, dramatic or fun, we have hundreds of quality curtain and upholstery fabrics.

BEAUTIFUL HAND-MADE BEDS Let Jack & Rose design and create the stunning bespoke bed of your dreams.

01656 768844

Kaely Backland of Usk welcomed us into her beautiful home and told us why she chose to work with Alexander James Bifold. How did you hear about Alexander James? I wanted some beautiful bifold doors. I researched online and found the Alexander James Bifolds website. I liked the look of it. It looked very professional and gave me the confidence to give the company a call. What made you choose to work with Alexander James? They came across very professional, both on the phone and when their representative, Andrew, initially came out to talk about their products and service before and after installation. What work did Alexander James carry out for you? They installed a set of bi-folding doors with four doors which open on to the garden. What difference have the doors made to the way you live? I already had PVC bi folding doors which were a substandard product and not fit for purpose. After talking with Andrew from Alexander James, and going with his advice to choose their aluminium product, I couldn’t be happier. The doors are not only a better quality product but, aesthetically, they are more pleasing - especially since I could almost choose any colour I wanted and, finally, the big plus - they actually work! Before I hardly bothered opening the PVC doors but now I use them all the time. I was so pleased with the work from this company that I have been back to fit all new windows throughout the property as well!



Alexander James Unit 3A Ashmount Business Park Upper Forest Way Swansea SA6 8QR 01792 794549 55


Selecting the perfect carpet and

You can make an appointment

flooring for your home or boutique

to suit your schedule with

hotel is important. However,

Patrick Terrett an interior

having the flooring installed to the

designer and flooring expert

very highest standard is equally

of 40 years, to make sure your

important to ensure it looks

flooring choice meets all your

wonderful. This is where Llandow


Carpet Studio has the advantage over all the other flooring suppliers

Alternatively you can talk

in the country as we have the 2017

your requirements over with

& 2018 Carpet Fitting Champions

Patrick on the phone and he

working with us. Our studio is

will visit you.

based just outside Cowbridge in the Vale of Glamorgan offering you

Llandow Carpet Studio operate

a relaxed atmosphere where you

anywhere in the country where

will not be rushed when selecting

a client requires that extra

the perfect floor for your home.

special service.

Contact us for an appointment: T: 01446 77 50 50 E:

Mode rn lo op s, h an dmade wool s t o t ra di t iona l A x m i n s t e rs & W i lt on s W E H A V E F L O O R I N G T O S AT I S F Y T H E M O S T D I S C E R N I N G C L I E N T S .

Llandow Carpet Studio showroom: 21K Vale Business Park, Llandow, Cowbridge, Vale of Glamorgan, CF71 7PF

New 3 and 4 bedroom homes available at Cae St Fagans New Redrow homes available from £398,995 Cae St Fagans at Plasdŵr is an ideal location to set up home and raise a family, knowing that as they grow, so will the facilities and amenities around you. Plasdŵr will be Cardiff ’s garden city. Images are indicative only. Details correct at time of going to print.

Cae St Fagans at Plasdŵr Cardiff CF5 3RD

See website for opening times Call: 02920 601650 Visit:

Welcome to City Life Magazine’s Social Life section, a veritable who’s who in and around Cardiff.


Attitude is everything

Pride Cymru is a charity. And, quite simply, their remit is to work for the promotion of the elimination of discrimination whether this is on the grounds of sexual orientation, gender, race, religion and ability. The Pride Cymru works towards this through its annual celebration of equality and diversity - Pride Cymru (historically known as Cardiff-Wales LGBT Mardi Gras). International rugby referee, Nigel Owens, is a Patron of pride Cymru and has campaigned to stamp out sexual discrimination in sport and came out in 2007. Nigel says, “Pride Cymru really unites all types of communities together. It’s a brilliant day out for all and I’m extremely proud to be part of it by showing my continued support.” This quote from our good friend Francis Brown sums up the significance of the event: “Back in 1985 at the first Pride march in Cardiff there were about 25 of us nervously marching. This year there were over 10,000 - how times have changed. We now have legal protection and equal rights and more or less unanimous public support and acceptance. Cardiff Pride in 2018 was a joyful and uplifting experience.” Want to know more? Visit Photography Kevin Moore 58


Artist Martin Briggs has it MADE Invited guests attended the Private View of Intent, a new body of work by emerging talent, Martin Briggs on the evening of 7th September. The evening was extremely enjoyable with a short presentation by MADE’s owner Zoe Gingell and Martin Briggs talked about his work and his passion for his art since retiring as a financial advisor. Martin’s work was on display until Sunday 23 September 2018 but if you missed it, he pops up again this November at the Sustainable Studio on Curran Road. Cardiff MADE 41 Lochaber Street, Roath, Cardiff CF24 3LS Owner Zoe Gingell - Photography Kevin Moore


City Life Autumn 2018  

The City of Cardiff's Premier Lifestyle Magazine

City Life Autumn 2018  

The City of Cardiff's Premier Lifestyle Magazine