Grangetown News

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p3 ‘Step too far?’

Residents’ anger at Taff Mead apartments p5 Veterans’ village


ESIDENTS ON THE Taff Embankment are battling to stop a flats development they claim is out of character with the area. Developers Rightacres – behind much of the new city centre and Brain’s Brewery redevelopments – want to build 74 flats on the site of the old Track 2000 warehouse. Although the height has been reduced down to a maximum six storeys and the number of flats dropped by 12, residents are still unhappy about the height, traffic congestion and the Bottleworks building not blending in with Edwardian properties. A petition has been launched, with a deadline for objections set for December 13th. Residents say they are not opposed to any development – but want something smaller in scale and more in keeping. They have pointed to more modest developments on the old Inn on the River and FA Jones sites. Rightacres believe their plans are a “stepping stone” which “ticks boxes in respect of the

p7 Veggie winners sustainable and regeneration initiatives.” The number of parking places have been increased to 57, mostly in a basement carpark, Campaigners believe it could mean 148 extra vehicles using Pentre Gardens. They have dubbed the planned building “Bottleneck”. Local councillors Ashley Lister and Lynda Thorne have also expressed their concerns and attended a packed public meeting during an earlier consulation phase. But residents are unhappy the developers have refused a meeting since their final plans were submitted. “We’re not against change, but really feel that Grangetown is disappearing and being swallowed up by city centre developments, like Central Square which is now dominated by huge buildings, with more to be developed,” said long-time residents Annette and Edward Woodyatt. Another Jan Birch told us: “New housing in Grangetown should be family friendly. In Grangetown we have schools

and parks and play areas fit for kids and extended families, and they are all well used. The new development, as I understand it, is completely at odds with this.” With an eye to the forthcoming Central Quay brewery development, as far as the river bank opposite, many residents are expressing worries that this latest proposal is a step too far. “Grangetown has been historically separated by the natural boundary of the Taff,” said another resident, Simon Newman.

He worries that “mediocre” flats developments in the city centre were in danger of “creeping” across the river. He said the main front of the Bottleworks would look towards Central Quay “with which it evidently identifies.” He added: “In doing so, this development self consciously turns it’s back on the residential community upon which it is being imposed.” Residents will take their case to the planning committee in the New Year.

p8 Vegan vanguard

p14 Wrong number?

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Grangetown News Winter 2018

Drug dealing frustration Residents unhappy despite operations


ESIDENTS off Corporation Road have been complaining of ongoing nuisance from drug dealing in recent months. The issue has been raised at Grangetown PACT meetings – particularly in the Ferndale Street area – prompting police crackdown operations. But the problems resurface when the police are not there. One of a dozen Ferndale Street residents present at one meeting said: “They never even take a day off – it’s happening from 10 in the morning, I can see it from my window. They are the same group, looking out and handing over drugs.” Residents in Dorset Street, Chester Place, Oakley Place and Court Road areas also spoke of

“constant” drug dealing. One resident spoke of a “sub culture” which had been present for years but also of people coming in from outside to trade; another spoke of two men being spotted, bare chested, injecting drugs in the street. One resident brought a bag of empty laughing gas canisters, collected from her street. Keep Grangetown Tidy have also reported litter from the canisters as being a continuing issue. Although not illegal, it is being used by youths creating antisocial behaviour. CCTV resources are limited and have been targeted by the criminals. Residents were urged to report any suspicions, descriptions of suspected dealers and vehicles to 101.

Residents have also raised concerns about annoyance from street drinking in Corporation Road and Clare Road/Court Road, people under the influence of Spice – including homeless people moving into Grangetown. Another resident spotted men who abandoned cycles, to inject drugs by the Embankment that morning. Meanwhile, councillors say they have lobbied council leaders to make Grangetown a pilot action area to tackle litter and fly-tipping, with more bins and a better waste management programme. The next PACT meeting will be on Tuesday 5th February (7pm) at the Grangetown Hub and alternate first Tuesdays of every month.

Grangetown News

Grangetown News started in 1978 and is produced by volunteers, all of whom are Grangetown residents. It relies on the support of our local businesses and advertisers. Publisher Grangetown Community Action Editorial production Steve Duffy, Bruce Porteous Writers/Contributors Fiona McAllister, Pentre Gardens residents, Janina Kuczys, Mandy Atwell, Steve Jenkins, David Reeves, Dafydd Trystan Photographs Steve Duffy, Lauren Saunders, Natalie Rees Advertising Ashley Lister Advertising rates 1/8 page – £40 1/4 page – £70 1/2 page – £110 full page – £200 Email Printed by Newsquest Thanks to Sarah Hughes and Community Gateway, Colin Greer Editorial meeting for volunteers and contributors – look out on for news. Newcomers welcome! Email Next edition Summer 2019

Pavilion shuts By Janina Kuczys, development officer FAN (Friends and Neighbours) is a Cardiff based charity that brings people of all ages and backgrounds together in the spirit of friendship. People who enjoy meeting others will be sure of finding a warm welcome if they attend. FAN groups create a sense of community and are a wonderful network. They offer a great opportunity to make new friends and meet your neighbours and are particularly helpful for those wanting to learn English or who already speak it but would like to improve.

When everyone has spoken, we close the meeting and then we have an informal chat to get to know each other. It is free to attend a FAN group, we are not affiliated to any particular religion and you do not need to book a place – just turn up! There are three FAN groups are currently running in Grangetown: Grangetown Hub, Havelock Place, CF11 6PA. The group meets on Mondays at 9.30am IKEA, Ferry Road. The group meets on Mondays at 11am Salvation Army, Corporation Rd, CF11 7AY. This group start with an English lesson at 10am, followed by a FAN meeting at 11am. The group is for women only. Pre-school children are welcome but ring first as space is limited. 02920 640714

Anyone is welcome to come to a FAN group and make new friends, whether you are Cardiff There are FAN groups running every day of the week except Sunday in born and bred or from the other side of the different areas of Cardiff. Some FAN groups continue to run during school world. holidays, while others take a break. So, what happens in a FAN group? We sit in a circle and talk about a chosen topic. Everyone Come and join us – you’ll always get a warm welcome and interesting gets a turn to speak, but if you are feeling shy, conversation at a FAN meeting! you do not have to speak if you don’t want to. Facebook: or Twitter: @thefancharity We don’t interrupt and listen to the person whose turn it is to speak.

Contact details: 07880630553 & 07512638792

GRANGE Pavilion has shut its doors and will be demolished in February, as part of £1.4m redevelopment plans. The old bowls pavilion in Grange Gardens is to be make way for a new community venue, which is set to open in January 2020. The revamp, after widespread local consultation and supported by lottery money, will see meeting areas and a cafe. The building will be operated as a trust, run by the community, after an asset transfer arrangement with Cardiff Council. The nearby old park-keeper’s hut is expected to become a temporary project office for the trust by the summer.

Grangetown News Winter 2018

Grangetown News 3

Is Grangetown’s character under threat?


HE BOTTLEWORKS plans have certainly created a strong reaction from residents living close to the River Taff. Grangetown was developed within the pre-existing boundaries of the railway and the Ely and Taff rivers and that helped it develop its own distinctive community over generations, despite being on the doorstep of the city centre. But what is ahead – with the planned Central Quay and other city centre developments right on our doorstep? There is the possibility of a 28- storey residential tower as part of Central Quay on the opposite side of the Taff in the not too distant future too.

Although carefully described in the developers’ blurb as “only a concept,” nevertheless the potential for a 200-flat high rise is expressed in how it would provide a “placemarker” for the project. Rightcares says the introduction of tall buildings “can signal transformation of an area, raise its profile and bring the investor confidence that is critical to delivery as signalling transformation”. Meanwhile, Bottleworks has been described as a “stepping stone” but that has been more of a threat than a promise to residents around Pentre Gardens. “I’m not interested in property values increasing in Grangetown and I don’t think this kind of development improves the area at all,” said resident

Jan Birch. “It’s all a bluff by developers to convince people that it will make them rich when, as we all know, the ridiculous cost of housing in cities all over Britain benefits only them and destroys cities for residents.”

Artist Impressions of the Bottleworks proposal (left, with the original height shaded). Above and below are concept drawings for the Central Quay later phases, on the opposite side of the River Taff to Grangetown. Plans have been passed for the first phase on the old Brain’s brewery site.

Residents believe they can argue that what is proposed is against planning guidance and is an attempt to “steamroller” the council on the back of city centre developments. “Clearly the scale and design of the Bottleworks is entirely out of character and scale with the local area in every respect,” added another resident Simon Newman. It comes as urban design students at Cardiff University start looking at Grangetown, as part of a long term research project to examine the relationship between design, housing and gentrification. The hope is to develop ways in which existing residents might be far more closely involved in building the vision and design of the area’s future. Leading the project is Prof Aseem Inam, who has experience all over the world, most recently in New York but also Las Vegas and Canada. Initially it’s about understanding Grangetown, not just its buildings and character, but land, finance and community - and to come up with “creative and feasible” proposals. “I think it’s a wonderful area, I’ve met quite a few people, done quite a bit of research,” said Prof Inam. “The main thing is it’s got a lot of

potential, provided we do the right thing. My feeling is the right thing is not happening right now. “One of the main goals for us is to find out, what is that right thing in the future, in terms of housing, in terms of public facilities, infrastructure. “ Living so close to the city centre brings particular challenges to Grangetown – and this could have an impact over the next decade. “I think with these new developments, a lot of people earning fairly good salaries in these new offices will want to live in Grangetown because it’s nearby, which has happened in other places,” said Prof Inam. “It will push rents up, push house prices up. Some people might be happy because they can sell their house and make a profit. But overall it’s not a good thing because it pushes people – that wonderful mix of ethnicities, the restaurants and

shops – they will get pushed out. And if we’re not careful in 10 or 20 years it will be Starbucks and Macdonalds. For the affordablity of houses and independent businesses – that protection could be physical, financial, policy. It’s not easy but it has to be if we value Grangetown.” Prof Inam said some businesses might get a boost “but at what cost?” “It’s individual benefit but public cost. A few businesses might benefit but overall you homogenise the neighbourhood, you push prices up, so it’s only people earning six figures or higher – not soon, perhaps in 10 years – who live there. It’s happened in parts of London. We have to learn our lessons from that. “It’s very tempting to see the money come in but it’s about density and diversity, a mix of people supporting different businesses. It’s not easy to do but it’s feasible.”

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Grangetown News Winter 2018

Grangetown News Winter 2018

Grangetown News 5

Hope for veterans’ village at old gasworks

Exciting proposals to build new homes for military veterans and community and heritage facilities revealed for old Grangetown gasworks site.


HERE ARE HOPES that a veterans’ village and community farm could be at the heart of a development on the site of the old Grangetown gasworks.

The Welsh Veterans Partnership – which works supporting ex-servicemen and women with housing and well being – wants to build homes and community facilities as an “achievable dream”. The site has already been earmarked for future housing as part of Cardiff’s local development plan.

The proposals include: * 1919-style housing, a mix of one, two and three bedroomed homes,

with modern-build technology for veterans, alongside other social, affordable and private housing.

* There could be allotments * There would be a community open space and a community farm, which could be used by local schools

* * * *

A veterans’ treatment centre A boathouse activity centre, out onto the River Ely A farm shop and three shops.

A bike hire station and repair shop linking to the cycle path – it’s close to the trail leading to the River Ely and Grangemoor Park. A local housing association is already interested in developing the proposals, which has seen initial drawings scoped out.

Early plan of the proposals for the site

It’s still early days but Dave Price of the Welsh Veterans Partnership said it was a “great opportunity to build a sustainable model of a community village on a brownfield site in the heart of Cardiff, Grangetown celebrating its past looking forward to a new future.” All that remains on the site, next to Ikea, is the landmark Victorian grade II listed gas holder. The wasteground has become a target for fly-tipping. The gas holder would become a heritage feature with an information centre – a “celebration of Grangetown’s industrial past” – as well as the open space inside offering the opportunity for a community market.

The gasholder was built in 1881, to an Italianate design and is the last to remain of five which were on site. Heritage body Cadw has called it “an architectural masterpiece” and designated it as a listed building in the 1990s when British Gas threatened to demolish it. Grangetown Gasworks opened in 1863, was a big employer, with its own sports teams.

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Grangetown News Winter 2018

Joining forces to tackle litter


eep Grangetown Tidy recently teamed up with Keep Riverside Tidy to hold a first joint litter pick involving the two groups of volunteers. The group will shortly mark its fourth anniversary and it has managed to hold regular monthly events, as well as other one-off litter picks during that time. Each month we hold a community litter pick in Grangetown on a Saturday or Sunday morning for a couple of hours, with the locations varying every month. If you can’t spare two hours come along for as long as you can. Everyone is welcome and all equipment is provided. We love to see children and dogs come along (with parents / owners).

It’s a great opportunity to make a difference to your neighbourhood, meet your neighbours and get some fresh air. You’d be surprised how many new friends people make! Fly-tipping and littering are big frustrations in Grangetown and by joining Keep Grangetown Tidy you can do something positive to make things better in your area. Since the group was set up in January 2015, we’ve made a big difference – we’ve run 53 litter picks involving 700 volunteers and collected a huge total of 1,136 bags of litter, not counting the fly-tipping that’s been picked up afterwards by Cardiff Council.

The joint litter-pick with Riverside in October started with 25 people at NosDa on the embankment and worked its way down river. In two hours we collected a massive 78 bags of litter before a social get-together in The Grange. Everyone who volunteers for Keep Grangetown Tidy now earns Time Credits for the time they’re giving to their community. For every two hour litter pick you earn two Time Credits, which can be exchanged for a free cinema ticket, a visit to the gym, a show or a family day out. See page 11 for list of litter-pick dates and locations

Voluntary groups link up online


website to help bring together Grangetown groups promoting healthy living and well being has been launched. Grangetown Wellbeing Network portal, hosted by Cardiff Third Sector Council (C3SC) supports local groups to talk to each other and work together. Already, 70 different activities have been identified in the area, most run by local voluntary groups and organisations. The online portal will help support these groups to promote their activities, make links and jointly coordinate local community action. Supported by Cardiff University’s Community Gateway programme and funded by the public health team in Cardiff and Vale, the idea was developed over the last year. C3SC worked with over 30 groups in Grangetown and they decided a single point of contact to look for information and communicate with each other was the top of their list and the IT platform was developed. C3SC chief executive, Sheila Hendrickson-Brown said: “We hope the portal will have a significant positive impact on people’s physical and mental health, as well as tackling loneliness and isolation, which is a growing problem in our society. Connecting residents with what is going on in their community will help people find local activities that they enjoy”. As well as helping discussion and collaboration online, the portal will also help Grangetown residents find local projects, activities and services which can improve health and wellbeing.

You can find the portal at

Grangetown News Winter 2018

Grangetown News 7

On the map for veggie food

Vegetarian Food Studio celebrates 15 years, which has brought a father and son team numerous accolades – and made Grangetown a destination for meat-free Indian food lovers from all over

FOOD STUDIO has made something of an impact since it VEGETARIAN opened in Grangetown 15 years ago. It is regularly on UK-wide lists of “veggie places to eat,” boasts 34 awards and has put the area on the map as a place for vegetarians, with a love of spice, to visit. The Penarth Road restaurant has moved a few doors down in the last couple of years but it is very much still a family affair. You’ll be lucky to see chef Neil Patel, who is busy behind the scenes in the kitchens. You’ll not fail to miss his father Jim, genial front-ofhouse host and the business brains behind the operation. Jim, one of four brothers, whose family business is car repairs, moved to Cardiff in the 1970s and was one of the early members of the Grangetown Hindu community, who helped set up the temple in Mardy Street. Neil was born nearby and the family were always vegetarian but Jim’s mother Sharda, now in her late 70s, was his mentor to become a vegetarian cook. “He started cooking, watching his grandmother from the age of eight,” said Jim. “His grandmother used to cook 800 chapatis a day, she was an inspiration and made sure he did it by the book. She taught him all she knows.” “On the day he graduated (in catering from Birmingham) I was driving down Penarth Road past this cafe, and they were putting the for sale board up and I stopped and asked how much they wanted for it,” recalled Jim. “He got a first class honours and the day he threw his hat, was the day I bought the business.” “We only bought it because of the temple, we thought our people would come, the Hindu community, anyone from India. We didn’t believe that British people would be interested in vegetarian food. “It has to be proper home-made food, the value and the service, it all comes into it,” said Jim. They order fresh supplies locally, while curry powders

Jim Patel (above left) and son Neil (top) won the 2018 Asian and Curry Awards healthy eating restaurant title recently

and he does the cooking. Customers don’t know Neil, everyone thinks it me!” There have been approaches about expanding but the family are reluctant to branch out and lose quality control. They have been looking at possibly a larger premises the other end of Penarth Road, with parking, as this has been an issue but they are still committed to Grangetown. “Visitors come with their little books, it’s putting Cardiff in a very good position,” said Jim, who believes quality vegetarian food choices are expanding in the city.

The Patels have noticed a growing interested in vegetarian – and vegan – food, and take their responsibilities for authenticity seriously and other ingredients come from India. Their business turnover has grown 50 times to when it started off in 2003. They also cater for events – including a recent Indian society wedding in London, with 6,500 guests. “People have realised there’s a difference with homecooked Indian food, that’s 100% vegetarian,” said Jim. “Vitamins, proteins, starch, whatever you get from meat, you get better than that in vegetarian. It’s like turmeric milk is becoming fashionable – people have realised that a spoonful of turmeric in milk is better for you than meat in your stomach. “It’s cooked like home-made food, look at the flavours, the textures – when you use okra you get something, with Bhindi or chick peas, you get something. And we have 47 dishes.” As for the partnership, one is unseen but creating; the other very much out front. “Neil’s not a businessman, he’s in his kitchen. I’m the businessman,” says Jim “I talk to people, I run the show

“Anna-Loka (in Roath) are doing well and the Jalan Malaysia (in Woodville Road), he’s promoting local Malaysian food.” Next, Vegetarian Food Studio is planning to spread the knowledge. There are plans to raise money for Llandough Hospital – with a monthly Monday charity vegetarian cookery classes starting in January, costing £25 to include food, with profits going to the hospital. “Even if they learn how to make channa masala – it’s the easiest you can do, or aubergine curry, it will be something and in a good cause,” said Jim.

Vegetarian Food Studio, 115–117 Penarth Road, Grangetown, Cardiff CF11 6JU Tel 029 20 238222 Open Tuesday–Sunday

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Grangetown News Winter 2018

Vegan values

Two businesses on your

Cater Nature

Natalie Rees runs Cater Nature from home Q How long has your business been going and what exactly do you do? Cater Nature is a veggie and vegan event catering company. We started trading in 2015, mainly cover Cardiff and Penarth but have travelled as far as Swansea to cater larger events like our first wedding in the summer. Q Are you providing a vegan choice for events – or completely catering for the whole of events? We cater the whole event, we are seeing more and more requests for fully vegan buffets. Most of our customers are mostly environmentally-friendly businesses. So they use us as we are sustainable. We offer reusable trays, plates and cutlery, our food has a smaller carbon and waste impact. We try and serve at least three of your fivea-day in our buffets and this includes using veg in our vegan cakes Q Did you find a gap in the market? We think so yes! We’ve been surprised by how quickly the business has grown and has made more profit in each passing year. We have built good relationships with customers who has specific dietary requirements, not just vegan or vegetarian customers but halal diets, and allergies and intolerances. One of our customers has a no-nut zone. As the business is small and is operated from home, the kitchen can be controlled tightly and our five star hygiene rated helps our customers to feel confident about our food. Our daughter has a severe egg allergy and we’ve been managing that for 12 years now, it’s what got us into vegan baking and we get great reviews for our cakes. Q Have you seen a rise in demand locally? Our work within Cardiff and Penarth is for smaller lunches and business breakfasts but we have catered for much larger events further afield, for birthday parties, christenings, office lunches, drinks receptions and our first wedding in the summer – our customers include Film Cymru, Sustainable Studio, Public Health Wales, and Citizens Advice. We’ve also done a few vegan fayres and we’ll be at Grangetown World Market on 1st December with vegan Christmas treats! Q What are the three misconceptions about being vegan? A lack of variety is often a concern but with hundreds of different veggies and loads of different milk replacements we feel we can be much more creative – a lot of foods are accidentally vegan too so we can use things like Jus Rol puff pastry for our vol-au-vonts and savoury tarts. We have exciting sandwich fillings like our homemade bean pates and pakoras for our wraps. This leads to another misconception about vegan food

With hundreds of different veggies and loads of different milk replacements we feel we can be much more creative.

tasting “weird”. People actually eat vegan meals quite often – jacket potato and beans, vegetable soup, a salad, peanut butter on toast or avocado toast for example. Our vegan food is mostly plant-based as opposed to vegan junk food which means there isn’t anything in it that you wouldn’t recognise – we don’t use fake meat products except for Quorn vegan slices now and again. “Vegan food is expensive” is another one. It definitely isn’t. Pulses, beans and vegetables are cheap and buying local produce in season helps a lot. Over the summer we were sourcing wonky strawberries from Cowbridge for our fruit platter – these would have gone to waste. We buy a lot of our veg from local shops and from Cardiff Market. This time of year soups, stews and risottos are great. We recently priced out Pumpkin Risotto tea for 37p a portion.

Q If you’re eating out, what are your favourite local places for vegan food? Vegetarian Food Studio – we pop in for snacks and sides off their counter to go with our homemade dishes – its great that they do this to take away – like a deli option. The Grange Pub – always has a range of vegan dishes I also have to shout out to UberEats, there are so many vegan options, often delivered on bike our favourite is Grazing Shed for vegan burgers but you can get falafel, mezze, burritos, pizzas and even desserts.

Contact, see and also @cater_nature on Twitter and on Facebook

Grangetown News Winter 2018

Grangetown News 9

– a natural fit doorstep are leading the way Wild Thing

Lauren Saunders is opening her vegan cafe Wild Thing in Clare Road in January.

wondering they are served with pure maple syrup, homemade peanut butter, grilled bananas and juicy fruit compote. I think they can win over even the biggest vegan sceptic.

Q: Tell us a bit about yourself? I’m 26 and from Bridgend. I moved to Cardiff after feeling a strong sense of the word ‘Hiraeth’ zassionate vegan who wants to show how tasty eating vegetables can be. I’m a lover of supporting independent businesses especially those who have a social aim! Q How long have you been trying to get Wild Thing off the ground? I started planning in January of this year. It started with an instagram account sharing pictures of food that I made in my tiny kitchen at home, it developed into business planning, recipe testing, property searching and now here I am about to open the cafe at 104 Clare Road!

Q Why have you picked Grangetown? Grangetown was the first area I lived in Cardiff when I moved here three years ago, so it’s always felt like my Cardiff home. The area has such a strong sense of community – I could tell that when signing the lease at the agency, the staff were so excited about the cafe opening – I knew that I had chosen the right spot. The area has such an amazing mix of independent businesses and I’m excited for Wild Thing to be the first 100% vegan cafe here. Grangetown is vibrant and multicultural with a strong sense of identity – everything you want from a city neighbourhood! Q What sort of menu will you be offering? The menu focuses on breakfast and lunch. Serving natural unprocessed food. It will showcase local seasonal fruit and vegetables. For breakfast think all the classics but made in unconventional ways. Fluffy waffles, pancake stacks, porridge with all the wonderful toppings. My favourite savoury breakfast dish is the smashed black beans, topped with cashew cream cheese and pickled red onion. The cafe will also serve lunch options of big hearty salad bowls and warming soups with Riverside Sourdough. There will be lots of gorgeous

I think veganism and individuals reducing meat and dairy intake is vital for the protection of the planet and for our health – and not just a fad!

Snickers cheesecake (top) and sweet potato (above) – just two of Lauren’s creations cake and Cardiff roasted coffee (Hard Lines) on offer too! Q What is “plant-based food” – explain to those of us who don’t know? Plant based food consists of fruit,vegetables, grains, nuts and legumes. No animal products so no meat, dairy ,eggs, honey. I use the word “plant-based” to describe the cafe as vegan foods can also be ‘ultra processed.’ Wild Thing cafe only sells natural unprocessed plant based food. This is the type of vegan food that I like to eat and I feel there was a gap for this in Cardiff. Q Say you’re not a vegan but still interested in trying it out, what would you recommend? I would say go for the pancake stack! In case you are

Q You have said you want to be more than a cafe but have a commitment to the community and projects – tell us more of what you’d like to offer/be involved in? Before planning Wild Thing I worked for The Big Issue – so my goals have been focused on societal change as opposed to just profit! Having worked in the third sector – collaboration was always encouraged. I’m excited to collaborate in so many ways in order to to contribute to the community in Grangetown. I’ve set the cafe three goals – to get more people eating veg; to reduce environmental impact and to tackle food poverty. The first two goals fe are through the menu, which is filled with local seasonal produce based on a diet that has the lowest environmental impact. The third goal to tackle food poverty is something I am really passionate about. Eating good food should not be a privilege! This is one of the areas which can allow a lot community engagement. I’m so keen to work with the Community Gateway project, for example, to deliver these projects to educate around healthy eating on a budget, run cooking classes and a community kitchen. I also I have a vision of a Grangetown Community Fridge in the future. I have lots of plans and strongly think that business should be used to create social change! Q Is Cardiff generally getting better for offering vegan options? Yes the vegan food scene in Cardiff is growing so quickly. I love how many new vegan businesses have opened up in the past few years and I have been inspired by them to do the same myself! Obviously you have places like Vegetarian Food Studio that have been around for years and is still one of my favourite places to eat in the city. I think there is still room for lots more 100% vegan businesses and I think that there should be vegan options in every food place in Cardiff! Q Would the cafe ever consider opening in the evenings in future, is there scope? I would love the cafe to be open in the evenings along the line. I want to start with some one off evening events then hopefully in the future I can extend the opening hours to offer daily evening meals too! Wild Thing,104 Clare Road (on the corner of Stafford Road), Grangetown, Cardiff CF11 6RT hopes to be opening mid-January. Follow Instagram @wildthingcardiff Twitter @wildthingcdf Facebook @wildthingcardiff for updates!

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Grangetown News Winter 2018

Grangetown News Winter 2018

Grangetown News 11

Gardens could become Centenary Field Litter-pick dates 2019 The laying out of the park cost £2,374 and a bandstand was first constructed in February 1895 – the first in Cardiff at the time – for the additional cost of £100. it was dismantled in the 1950s and replaced in 2000. The bowling green dates from June 1906. The drinking fountain is a replacement to one which was first installed in 1909 but which was melted down for metal during World War Two.

Grange Gardens could be put in trust, to protect the park forever, with a proposal being considered by Cardiff Council. The idea would be to dedicate the gardens under the Centenary Fields Initiative. The council has already dedicated seven parks in this way, in 2012, under the banner of the Fields In Trust (FIT), formerly the National Playing Fields Association. Grange Gardens qualifies because of its Grade II-listed war memorial, which gives it extra significance. Councillor Peter Bradbury, cabinet member for sport, leisure and culture, said: “In my view Grange Gardens meets the criteria and would be an excellent site for dedication, particularly given the efforts made by the local community in fundraising to create the war memorial in situ.” The war memorial was unveiled in 1921 after local people raised £1,000 in memory of 330 casualties of World War One. A plaque remembering a further 156 men and women who died in the war but whose names were not included was dedicated in November. By becoming a Centenary Field, the

council would still be responsible for maintaining the park and would hold the freehold. But it would see the council effectively disposing of the land although it would see its status protected. The proposal – which also applies to Alexandra Gardens too, the location of the Welsh national war memorial, will need to go out to public consultation after it is discussed by the council’s cabinet. The area of the gardens involved does not include Grange Pavilion and the old bowling green, which is subject to £1.5m redevelopment plans – and would be under control of a separate trust. Formal public notices will be posted around Grange Gardens about the proposed changes – but councillors are keen to reassure residents that the park is not at any risk. The park was a gift of the Marquis of Bute and Windsor estates and opened in June 1895. It joined Cadw’s register of parks of historic interest in Wales in September 2013.

Can you help with the next edition of Grangetown News? This newspaper relies entirely on volunteers and the support of advertisers Can you help? We need: • Writers, photographers – even

Sunday 17th February, 10am, Grange Gardens Sunday 16th March, 10am, meet Grangetown Hub, possible joint litter pick with Keep Riverside Tidy Saturday 13th April, 10am, Campbell Drive / Ferry Road flyover Sunday 19th May, 10am, Sevenoaks Park Saturday 15th June, 10am Merches Gardens Saturday 20th July, 10am Jim Driscoll Way

street or a nearby street.

Sunday 18th August, 10am Court Road

willing to take a few copies for customers to pick up – we’ll give you a mention! People with cars who can help deliver copies Between editions we also run stories on our website www.

Saturday 21th September, 10am Grangemoor Park

• Local shops/businesses

Saturday 19th January, 10am–12pm, Cornwall Street and Dorset Street

if you want to give it a try.

• Volunteers to deliver in their

If you want to join in a Tidy Grangetown litter-pick, you’re more than welcome. The group meets at a different location every month, by the Cardiff Rivers truck. Litter-pickers, gloves and bags are provided. It is also suitable for families and social groups.

ADVERTISING RATES: 1/8 page – £40 1/4 page – £70 1/2 page – £110 1 full page – £200 1 full back page – £250

E-mail grangetowncardiff@ for details or with any query

Saturday 19th October, 10am, Corporation Road Litterpicks are scheduled for a couple of hours but people are free to join in or leave when they want to Follow @TidyGrangetown on Twitter or search for Keep Grangetown Tidy on Facebook

CHRISTMAS SERVICES Christingle with St Paul’s School Choir – Sunday 9th December, 5pm – St Paul’s, Paget Street. Nativity Service for all the family, Salvation Army – Sunday 16th December, 10am St Paul’s Church Choir Christmas Concert – Wednesday 19th December, 7.30pm – St Paul’s, Paget Street Friday 21st December – St Patrick’s Church, Mass 10am; Sacrament of Reconciliation 10.30am, 6pm Saturday 22nd December – St Patrick’s, Mass and Sacrament of Reconciliation, 6.30pm Sunday December 23rd – Carols for everyone, 6pm – Salvation Army; Traditional Lessons and Carols by Candlelight – St Paul’s, Paget Street Christmas Eve – Monday 24th December Family Crib Service, 4pm – St Paul’s, Paget Street Christmas Vigil Mass, 7pm – St Dyfrig and St Samson, Pentre Gardens; Mass, St Patrick’s Church, 7pm Christingle Service Salvation Army, 11pm Midnight Mass, 11.30pm – St Paul’s, Paget Street Christmas Day – Tuesday 25th December Christmas Eucharist with Carols, 10am – St Paul’s, Paget Street; Christmas Day service at 10.30am – Salvation Army; Mass at St Patrick’s, 10am.

12 Grangetown News

Grangetown News Winter 2018

New-look Channel View plans set for new year C

hannel View estate is set to be completely transformed – and to double in size – with new proposals set to go forward. Residents have already been consulted about the ideas – with outline plans now set to be submitted in January. Local councillor and cabinet member for housing and communities Lynda Thorne, said: “We have an exciting opportunity to redevelop the Channel View estate to deliver more quality social housing in the city and create an improved environment for residents.” The number of homes on the estate would almost double from the current 184 properties – to 360 – as well as the creation of more in-demand three and fourbedroom family homes. It would involve the demolition of the 14-storey high Channel View tower block, home to 86 residents. Plans to reclad the tower were already put on hold due to Grenfell, but the 1970s building was also facing

It is understood with a replacement expected to cost upwards of £12m, new low-rise replacement homes were looked at as an alternative and tower residents have been consulted about this new option. significant costs to refurbish and replace ageing systems including plumbing. The new vision includes flats – but no more than seven storeys high at most across the project. Mrs Thorne said: “The Channel View estate regeneration is ambitious and part of our vision to not only to tackle the pressures to provide decent homes for the people who need them but also to create

more sustainable and better connected communities across the city." The proposal also includes a new sheltered housing scheme which could provide a hub from which to deliver older person services. A review last year highlighted poor design, a poor bus route and “low quality” public spaces. Meanwhile, existing cladding

material has been removed from the Channel View tower block recently, because it did not meet the latest post-Grenfell fire standards. Mrs Thorne said “sterile” communal areas were also being maintained to ensure no combustible items were left there and this was monitored closely, while there were 24-hour fire warden patrols and CCTV. As for the redevelopment, Mrs

Thorne said they were looking at a “good mix” of private houses and apartments for sale as well as new council homes, with the aim of existing residents being able to stay on the revamped estate. The development was prompted a review of the whole estate last year which found subsidence anmajor structural damage to the flats and houses bordering the Marl.

Rotary sowing seeds for future We are currently helping out two local primary schools with a project to create peace gardens with stone seats, where children can sit quietly, if they want to. Planters for the school grounds have been donated by a fellow Rotarian to contain both flowers, shrubs and herbs. Cardiff Bay Rotary members are concerned about the environment and to that end each school will plant 12 apple trees and a cherry tree. Fruit trees were chosen so that they would both meet the challenge of supporting our eco system and provide fruit for the children next year. We have also supplied purple crocuses for planting. The flower for Rotarians symbolises the vaccination against polio because, when children are vaccinated overseas, each has their little finger painted purple to show that they have received it. Only 22 new cases of polio have been reported in the world in the year to October and we hope that this disease will soon be eradicated. Both schools have set up a Rotakids club (very young members of Rotary who work as a group, guided by their teachers, addressing issues and challenges of their choice). They have also received starter funding for Years 5 and 6 to participate in overseas microfinance lending projects. We have recently delivered 417 dictionaries to the eight primary schools who have been part of this programme for many years. Cardiff Bay Rotary is also a key supporter of the Grangetown Pavilion project and we are pleased at the progress in the former bowling pavilion’s redevelopment. We have turned out to help with a bit of gardening (again!) around the old bowling green (pictured above).

Grangetown News Winter 2018

Grangetown News 13

Memorial’s missing names mystery S

OME NAMES have been baffling – and there are still a few which have so far proved impossible to track down the details of. One which was only identfied recently appears on the memorial as “TAL WALES – HMS BELLONA, BATTLE OF JUTLAND”. Despite trying all different permutaions of the name, and finding no casualty on the ship at that huge naval battle in 1916, it looked like remaining elusive. Then a Royal Navy research project suggested a name to us, which immediately fitted. Thomas Abraham Lewis – so TAL was his initials – was an Able Seaman on Bellona and was wounded. He died of his injuries and TB in 1920, nearly four years after the battle, aged 22. His family home was yards from Grange Gardens, probably the closest to the memorial, erected a year after his death.

By Steve Duffy

Is our local war memorial all it appears? That is a question I’ve been asking after spending the last five years researching the names and details of who they were for Grangetown’s World War One project. It came to a climax with the recent postcard project organised by Grangetown Local History Society. Many residents took time to reflect on the impact on this area by placing a card in their window for the soldier or sailor who once lived in their house but never returned home. What the research quickly found was that the number of Grangetown casualties went way beyond the 330 names on the monument in Grange Gardens. To date, we have discovered another 156 – three in the last few weeks. A similar project in Whitchurch has found 94 names missing from their war memorial too. But why were so many names missing from the Grangetown memorial, when it was erected in 1921? Firstly, let’s go back to just

before the end of the War in 1918, when a Grangetown Heroes Committee was formed to raise £1,000 by public donations for it to be built No documents appear to have survived to shed any light on how they went about it. But typically, in common with similar memorials in the city, families, churches and chapels are likely to have been asked to submit names by letter. Others would have been suggested by word of mouth This itself presented plenty of opportunity for mistakes – and omissions. Grangetown’s population, like today, saw a tidal flow of people in and out. Widows of some soldiers and sailors also remarried and moved away. Looking at forlorn appeals in newspapers for news of missing relatives, some may have clung to the hope a loved one may still return. Grangetown’s was no simple village memorial either. Clive Street alone had 38 casualties. Despite this, the Grange

Gardens memorial contains errors not easily explained by organisational complexity. Two soldiers are on the memorial twice. There are numerous spelling errors of names or regiment. One relative told me that the dead sailor’s mother had to use some persuasion to get his name included – and then his surname was misspelt. Another Royal Navy man was not included, despite his mother paying a subscription for him to be on the memorial. There is also the story of Alf Norman, a veteran soldier and Grangetown postman who had been declared dead in France but who turned up very much alive a few weeks later. His name was still included on the memorial and he joyfully pointed to his name when visitors called to see him for many years later. But it would be harsh to criticise the efforts of those who managed to erect such a fine monument. A new plaque was dedicated on Remembrance Sunday to those “other” names. The sacrifice was even greater than those a century ago could have imagined. Now at least those other casualties now can never be forgotten.

Alf Norman (left), who turned out to be alive but was included on the war memorial. A Boer War veteran, he joined the Glamorgan Yeomanry – he also survived the Blitz when his house was bombed.

Can anyone help with any of these names? Are you a relative? Thomas Callan – on St Patrick’s RC Church plaque Pte D Evans, Welsh Regiment 3rd Battalion Pte J Gulman, Welsh Regiment 2nd Battalion Sgt S J Hughes, Welsh Regiment 13th Battalion Engineer Navigator WJ O’Leary, Royal Navy HMS Vivid Richard O’Reilly – on St Patrick’s RC Church plaque Seaman T Olsen, HMS Gossamer Driver A Payne, Royal Army Service Corps Stoker C Priest, HMMS No 7 C Smallbridge, HMS Warwick Driver TA Smith, Royal Army Service Corps

The story of Grangetown in World War One and details of all local casualties are in a new book, It Touched Every Street by Steve Duffy (£14.99, order online via Wordcatcher Publishing or on Amazon). Also see www.grangetownwar. and email

14 Grangetown News

Harassment ‘in plain sight’ Frustration at 101 service – is it time for a better crime reporting system? GRANGETOWN OPINION – BY FIONA McALLISTER Grangetown on the whole is a friendly community and a nice place to live. However, my teenage daughter has had frequent problems with sexual harassment on the streets of Grangetown over the last few years. There are groups of men (particularly in the summer months) on street corners and on the pavement outside bars and shops who catcall, shout, whistle and intimidate women going past. And it seems she’s not the only one who’s fed up with this behaviour – we came across the message (right) painted on a Grangetown pavement recently. It’s totally unacceptable that women can’t walk down the street in their own neighbourhood without facing harassment, feeling unsafe and being made to feel uncomfortable. My daughter said: “As a 16 year old woman I can’t leave my own home in Grangetown without being subjected to shouts, whistles and comments about my appearance – all unwanted and unprovoked. “Grangetown should be a thriving and safe area, but the harassment I and other women suffer in plain sight on our streets does not make Grangetown a safe place to live.”

In response to a tweet about my daughter’s experiences of harassment, South Wales Police Chief Constable Matt Jukes said: “We are concerned that public spaces should be and feel safe”. He urged us to report all instances of sexual harassment to 101. While it’s good to know that the police take sexual harassment seriously, our experience of the 101 service over the past few years has been far from positive. So this doesn’t encourage us to do that. In my view, there are big problems with 101: * It can take a very long time to get through (there’s often a wait of 15–20 minutes) so unless you’re very

determined you give up. This does make you wonder how important your call really is to South Wales Police and is reporting some crimes even being discouraged to keep the figures down?


Even when you get through, nothing seems to happen as a result – there is very rarely (if ever) any feedback or any visible action taken, so you end up feeling you’ve wasted your time in bothering to report the incident.


Is the 15p for every phone call to 101 another deterrent to reporting crimes? My bad experiences of 101 seem to be shared by lots of other people. When I tweeted in frustration after being on

New school building keys handed over By Dafydd Trystan Ysgol Hamadryad head teacher Rhian Carbis has been presented with the keys to the school’s new building by contractors Morgan Sindall – on time and on budget!

scooting or biking to the school – and there’s plenty of bike and scooter storage on site.

It will become a focal point for community activities.

There’s also a ‘Tren Traed’ – literally a ‘foot train’, where parents can drop children at the Havannah St car park and join staff on the walk to school. Once they arrive, one of the features of the playground is the Ysgol Hamadryad Boat. This is a climbing frame in the shape of a boat – celebrating the history of the site as the location for the Hamadryad hospital ship.

The keys were handed over at the end of November. In time, 420 pupils will be housed at the school. It will also offer nursery provision – with places available for entry in both January and April 2019.

Parents in Grangetown and Butetown have long called for a Welsh medium school to be established.

It also aims to be one of the most sustainable schools in Cardiff – with pupils walking,

While the school has been warmly welcomed at its temporary site, in the yard of Ninian Park Primary School in Virgil Street, the new building will herald the start of a new chapter in the school’s history.

Dog walkers and football players alike would have seen the Welsh medium school taking shape at the north end of Hamadryad Park in Butetown for many months. But only in recent weeks have the hoardings come down and the scale of progress made become apparent. The school, which will take pupils from Grangetown and Butetown, has been funded as part of the 21st Century Schools scheme by the Welsh Government.

Ysgol Hamadryad will serve as a community school for both Grangetown and Butetown. The school already has more than 100 pupils and celebrates the fact that there are 17 different languages spoken by parents and children. Any parents interested in visiting can contact Mrs Carbis on

Grangetown News Winter 2018 hold for 15 minutes to report drug dealing recently the responses I got were: “Same here when I rang a few months back. Operator very unhelpful and made me feel as if I was wasting her time”. “I couldn’t get through at all recently”. “Same here. Not worth ringing”. Another: “I had to ring them after watching a woman getting assaulted and they took a long time to answer – shocking”. Mr Jukes responded on Twitter to say the force faced challenges around demand – including 101 – particularly when there are spikes around big incidents”. I completely understand fluctuations in demand but I’ve yet to speak to anyone who has got through easily, regardless of the time or who felt they had a satisfactory outcome to the call. So, isn’t it time that South Wales Police introduced a better way for the public to report ‘non-emergency’ crimes (I would query that definition of some crimes like drug dealing by the way)? Surely they could introduce an online reporting system that doesn’t cost the caller anything and that allows you to upload photos and provide more detail on what you’ve seen without the long, frustrating wait to get through? Without improvements to the 101 service South Wales Police will never get a true picture of the level of crime in our communities and the public’s confidence in the police force will continue to diminish. *Since this was written, there were reports of a series of ‘touching’ and sexual assault incidents in Grangetown and Cardiff Bay. Inquiries led to an arrest. Police urged women to stay vigilant and to try to avoid walking in unlit areas.

Grangetown News Winter 2018

Grangetown News 15

Street’s grassroots award C

community group Stockland Street Planters have won £500 funding in the 2018 Grassroots Giving scheme, a UK-wide initiative run by Skipton Building Society. The scheme aims to reward community groups, clubs and organisations that make a positive impact to their local community. This year Grassroots Giving received a total of 740 applications, which were whittled down to a shortlist of just over 330 groups. Only 165 pots of £500 were available, however, and to make sure the funding was allocated as fairly as possible the winners were chosen by a public vote. The Stockland Street planters are two mini-gardens at the intersection of Clive Street and Stockland Street in Grangetown.

‘Splash of colour’ The planters were provided by Cardiff Council in the summer of 2017 as part of the Love Where You Live initiative and a group of local residents got together to look after them. Volunteers are responsible for planting, weeding, watering and caring for them and for keeping them litter free. The inspiration came from a street party, first held in 2016 and repeated a year later. Money raised bought the first plants. One planter is full of flowers and the other contains herbs and they provide a splash of colour all year round.

Winter diary Saturday 8th December Ysgol Hamadryad School Christmas Fair at St Paul’s Church Hall, Paget Street, Grangetown, 2pm and 4pm. The fair will feature a host of stalls including games, crafts, books, cakes, tombola and much more! Wednesday 12th December: Christmas Carol Service, Grange Gardens, 6.30pm. With the Salvation Army band and the park wardens. Saturday 15th December: Keep Grangetown Tidy monthly litterpick, 10am – meet by Clive Street. All welcome. Sunday 16th December: Community Carol Service with Grace Church, Channel View leisure centre, 4pm–5pm.

“We’re really thrilled to have won the funding in the face of such stiff competition from all sorts of amazing community groups across the UK,” said lead volunteer Fiona McAllister. “The money will make a huge difference to the group as it will help us buy plants, compost and tools to keep the planters looking good for the next few years,” she added. Stockland Street Community Planters would love to hear from you if you’d like to get involved in caring for the planters. Please get in touch via, Keep Grangetown Tidy on Facebook or on Twitter @tidygrangetown

Friday 4th January 2019: Grangetown Local History Society, 2pm, Glamorgan Archives, Leckwith. Meeting on the first Friday of every month. www. Tuesday 5th February: Grangetown PACT, Grangetown Hub, 7pm.

Regular events/activities: Second Sunday of the month – Ponder with a Pint, The Grange pub, 6pm. Hosted by Fr David Morris of St Paul’s Church, a monthly informal discussion group talking about issues and religion-related topics. Mondays – Grangetown Community Choir, Cornwall St church hall, 7.30pm–9.30pm. All welcome, relaxed, harmonious environment. £70 for term. Email for details. First Tuesday of the month – Grangetown Book Club, Grangetown Hub, 6pm. Wednesdays – Pub Quiz at The Grange pub from 8pm Last Thursday of the month – The Grange for a Laugh, free comedy night, hosted by Mike Powell, from 8pm at the Grange Pub, restarts January. Fridays – Grangetown Food Bank, Grangetown Baptist Church, Clive Street, 12pm–2pm. Organised by Cardiff Foodbank 13th Cardiff St Paul’s Scouts, Bayden Scout Hall, Ferry Road (nr Ikea). Boys and girls welcome – the Beavers meet on Thursdays from 5.30pm–6.45pm, cubs ages 8–10 – Thurs from 6.15pm, scouts 10–14, Fridays 6.30pm– 8.30pm. Hall available for hire, email scoutscardiff@btconnect for more events. See Page 11 for Christmas services and litter-pick dates. Grangetown Community News © Grangetown Community Action 2018