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Food/Arts/Entertainment/Shopping/Property ISSUE 217 / EASTER 2020 / £3






Well built

Our brand new property section










his is the limbo of seasons. Not winter, not spring. Jumper on, jumper off. Brolley up, brolley down. Country walks, city slicking. Spend time sorting the house or pay attention to the garden? The dual aspect of this inbetweeny time is actually, like most good estate agents would tell us, its selling point. Never boring, and something for everyone. We’ve used this mantra to help shape this issue. We’re covering the inside, the outside, and lots of other things in the middle. On page 24 there’s a fascinating and in-depth exploration of how an awareness of green issues is transforming both decor trends (think beautiful botanicals, natural materials and lots of lovely natural light) and influencing the industry in all things eco. Our Ed’s Choice shopping page is devoted to gorgeous, locally-sourced gardening accessories (page 38) to help inspire said horticultural mission, and on page 34 we look at the glorious RHS Flower Show set time bloom in Cardiff later this month. There’s all the action from our Cardiff Life Awards sponsors and finalists party at Park Plaza’s Kuku Club (page 44) and over on page 62 we speak to local wealth management experts for advice on a healthy wealthy future. And over on page 65 we launch our new hot property section bringing you the latest growth and development in this forever evolving and thriving capital city, starting with a look at our cover star, Cardiff Bay’s Grade II listed Big Windsor development. Enjoy, and see you in three!


ydym mewn cyfnod sy’n syrthio rhwng dwy stôl. Y gaeaf wedi gorffen a’r gwanwyn heb ddechrau. Gwisgo siwmper, tynnu siwmper. Agor ymbarél, cau ymbarél. Mynd am dro yn y wlad, mynd i ymochel yn y ddinas. Rhoi trefn ar y tŷ neu roi sylw i’r ardd? Byddai pob gwerthwr tai’n dweud wrthym mai natur ddeublyg y cyfnod hwn rhwng dau dymor yw ei rinwedd mewn gwirionedd. Nid yw byth yn ddiflas, ac mae’n cynnig rhywbeth i bawb. A dyna’r thema sydd wedi ein helpu i lunio’r rhifyn hwn. Rydym yn rhoi sylw i bethau y tu mewn a’r tu allan, ac i lawer o bethau eraill yn y canol. Ar dudalen 24 ceir erthygl ddiddorol sy’n ymdrin yn fanwl â sut y mae ymwybyddiaeth o faterion amgylcheddol yn trawsnewid tueddiadau ym maes addurno tai (meddyliwch am blanhigion prydferth, defnyddiau naturiol a llawer o olau naturiol) a sut y mae’r ymwybyddiaeth honno’n tynnu elfennau ecolegol i mewn i’r diwydiant. Mae tudalen siopa Dewis y Golygydd yn canolbwyntio ar ategolion lleol gwych ar gyfer yr ardd (tudalen 38) er mwyn hybu’r awydd i arddio, ac ar dudalen 34 rydym yn rhoi sylw i Sioe Flodau’r Gymdeithas Arddwriaethol Frenhinol a fydd yn ei gogoniant yng Nghaerdydd yn nes ymlaen yn y mis. Rydym yn rhannu’r newyddion diweddaraf â chi am noddwyr Gwobrau Cardiff Life ac am y dathliadau i’r sawl a gyrhaeddodd y rownd derfynol, yng Nghlwb KuKu yng Ngwesty’r Park Plaza (tudalen 44), ac ar dudalen 62 rydym yn sgwrsio ag arbenigwyr lleol ar reoli cyfoeth er mwyn cael cyngor ynghylch dyfodol ariannol iach. Ar dudalen 65 rydym yn lansio ein hadran newydd ar eiddo poblogaidd, gan ddod â’r manylion diweddaraf i chi am dwf a datblygiadau yn y brifddinas hon sy’n ffynnu ac yn esblygu’n barhaus. Rydym yn dechrau drwy roi sylw i’r eiddo sy’n cael lle amlwg ar ein clawr, sef datblygiad y Big Windsor, yr adeilad rhestredig Gradd II sydd ym Mae Caerdydd. Mwynhewch! Tan y tro nesaf ymhen tair wythnos!

SARAH MOOLLA Follow us on Twitter @CardiffLifeMag Instagram @cardifflifemag

www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 3


a er

COVER Cardiff Bay’s Big Windsor development, page


24 INTERIORS Yes green is in, and we mean that in

a very eco-sense


some of the local growers showing at the Bute Park flower festival


11 INTRO The Richard Burton exhibition coming to


12 WHAT’S ON Arts, gigs, shows and comedy, it’s all

going on in Cardiff


37 SHOP INTRO These seeds are the bomb 38 ED’S CHOICE Little pieces of locally-sourced


horticultural happiness


48 RESTAURANT Our reviewer visits Tom Simmons’


new Pontcanna venture


53 CARDIFFWORKS News, views, and inspiring

interviews with the region’s professionals

62 WEALTH MANAGEMENT Financial planning

advice for key stages of life


65 INTRO New plans for Channel View Estate 67 PROPERTY NEWS Housing news from the capital 70 SHOWCASE The new Cardiff Bay development,

the Big Windsor, is a very big deal


SPOTLIGHT News on walkies in Bute Park,

celebrating Cardiff’s indie music venues, and Welsh Language Day 17 WYBURN & WAYNE The boys are back and out on the town 44 SCENE Kuku Club party action from the Cardiff Life Awards Finalists & Sponsors party 74 CARDIFF LIVES Putting photographer Neil Pesticcio in the picture

Editor Sarah Moolla sarah.moolla@mediaclash.co.uk Ed’s photo by Louis Smith /www.studiowhisk.co.uk Managing editor Deri Robins deri.robins@mediaclash.co.uk Senior art editor Andrew Richmond Graphic design Megan Allison Cover design Trevor Gilham Contributors Tamara Pitelen, Nathan Wyburn, Wayne Courtney, Elsie Chadwick, and John Mather Advertising manager Mark George mark.george@mediaclash.co.uk Account manager Samantha James samantha.james@mediaclash.co.uk Production/Distribution manager Sarah Kingston sarah.kingston@mediaclash.co.uk Deputy production manager/production designer Kirstie Howe kirstie.howe@ mediaclash.co.uk Chief executive Jane Ingham jane.ingham@mediaclash.co.uk Chief executive Greg Ingham greg.ingham@mediaclash.co.uk Cardiff Life MediaClash, Circus Mews House, Circus Mews, Bath BA1 2PW 01225 475800 www.mediaclash.co.uk @The MediaClash © All rights reserved. May not be reproduced without written permission of MediaClash. We’re a Bath-based publisher, creative agency and event organiser Magazines Our portfolio of regional magazines celebrates the best of local living: Bath, Bristol, Cardiff and Exeter. We also publish foodie mag Crumbs (www.crumbsmag.com, @CrumbsMag). Agency From the design and build of websites to digital marketing and creating company magazines, we can help. Events We create, market, promote and operate a wide variety of events both for MediaClash and our clients Contact: info@mediaclash.co.uk

www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 5

SPOTLIGHT Community spirit


Wales’ fourth Purple Pla ue was recently unveiled in honour of Angela Kwok to celebrate her contribution to Cardiff’s Chinese community. For almost 5 years, Angela, who died in 2 6, helped many isolated Chinese people in South Wales through organising English lessons, sourcing legal advice and arranging social groups. Her pla ue was placed on the Bamboo Garden takeaway on Cathedral Road, Pontcanna, which Angela ran with her husband. Angela’s daughter, Temmy Woolston who attended the unveiling, says, My mother was truly an inspirational role model for all women in Wales. She touched the lives of many, making a real positive difference, giving support to those who needed it and a voice to those who didn’t feel they had one. Similar to blue pla ues, the Purple Pla ue scheme was set up by a group of female Assembly members in 2 to mark the achievements of outstanding women in Wales. r re arae e

LEFT: The late Angela Kwok was recognised with a Purple Plaque for her work with the Chinese community; BELOW: Deputy minister and chief whip Jane Hutt, Temmy Woolston, her sister Joanna Davies (daughters to Angela) with Angela’s grandchildren, and Professor Meena Upadhyaya



Cardiff City Hospice is hosting their annual charity dog walk, Wag this Way, on Sunday 2 March. Hosted by Cardiff Life columnists and Radio Cardiff DJs Wyburn and Wayne, the 5km route is a stroll through Bute Park, where treats will be found for both canines and humans. The charity dog walk, which costs 5 to be a part of, is sponsored by Metro Bank. The bank’s commercial banking director Jonathan Field says, We are extremely excited at Metro Bank to be involved with City Hospice’s Wag this Way and the fact that we are the K’s only dog-friendly bank is a perfect opportunity for us to be involved and to support Cardiff’s local hospice. r re i ie r “Where are the treats? We were promised treats.”

6 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk

HANA2K performed at St David’s for Dydd Miwsig Cymru



The fifth Welsh anguage Music Day Dydd Miwsig Cymru, which took place on February, saw special music releases, celebrity learners, and more than 2 gigs take place all over the city including Welsh language acts Al ewis and HANA2K, who performed at St David’s Dewi Sant. The day was part of the long-term vision to see a million people speaking and using Welsh by 2 5 . Welsh language music is seen as a great resource for learners of the language, as the song lyrics help to expand vocabulary. Welsh anguage Music Day ambassador and BBC Radio and 6 Music DJ, Huw Stephens, says, It’s been an incredible year for Welsh language music. Not only was this the biggest Dydd Miwsig Cymru to date, but in the last year Welsh language artists like Adwaith, HMS Morris and The Joy Formidable have taken their sounds overseas to new audiences that are now engaged in the language. For more: www.gov.wales

Music venues


Independent Venue Week (IVW) returned to the capital on 27 January for a seven-day celebration of venues, artists, promoters, and labels, to showcase some of the most impressive talent in Wales. Events included Gruff Rhys at Clwb Ifor Bach with a wealth of Welsh support such as Sonny Winnebago, Panic Shack, and Lucas J Rowe, with all the money raised going to the charity Children in Need. Chair of Arts Council of Wales Phil George, which part funds IVW, says, “Our independent venues are incredibly important. They’ve given some of our finest bands their first gigs and they give local audiences opportunities to hear exciting music in their own community centres.” For more: www.independentvenueweek.com

Gruff Rhys helps sing the praises of Cardiff’s music venues; ABOVE: Panic Shack perform at Clwb Ifor Bach

The story of the Buddhist deity Guanyin Avalokitesvara is told as part of National Museum Cardiff new LGBTQ+ tour



National Museum Cardiff have teamed up with GBT History Month and Pride Cymru to take a fresh look at some of their art and collections. The museum has introduced monthly tours, with the next one happening April, to examine several different pieces of art from its collections. One artefact looked at is the 5th-century wooden sculpture of Buddhist deity Guanyin Avalokitesvara, who over the course of a thousand years was androgenised, incorporating male and female characteristics, and went from being known as Avalokitesvara, ord of Compassion, to Guanyin, Goddess of Mercy. This third century icon’s transformation goes some way to helping explain the diverse and deep understanding by many ancient communities of sexuality and gender. The new programme has been coordinated by freelance museum curator Dan o, who has set up similar tours in the ictoria and Albert Museum in ondon and the niversity of Cambridge Museums. Dan says, National Museum Cardiff is well-established for its world-famous art collection and has given me an opportunity to share GBT stories, which are often under-represented, on this tour. For more: www.museum.wales

www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 7


Money talks Lee Williams from OLYMPUS ACCOUNTANCY tells us how it helps companies with their accountancy needs


e’re back for another chat with the guys at Olympus Accountancy. This month, we’re speaking with finance director and co-founder of Olympus, Lee Williams, to get to the bottom of their growth and why so many landlords are heading their way. Hello Lee! Let’s kick things off by asking, what is it that Olympus does that’s different from conventional accountancy firms? It’s pretty simple; the job your accountant is there to do is to take the finance side of your company, and optimise and structure it. Almost everyone who sets up a business isn’t an expert in finance and tax but they need to be to run a successful company. With Olympus, you actually get what you’re paying for. So, what exactly are we paying for with Olympus Accountancy? Most SME [small to medium enterprise] companies need a management accountant on-hand, at the end of the phone and in person. With us, you get a bookkeeping service, Xero, and a monthly management meeting to help optimise your business. Ultimately, when you’re self employed, you’re always checking the bottom line and you can easily end up losing sleep over money. We’re open 8am to 8pm so you can chat about money, even when most employees have left for the day. 8 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk

That sounds like the perfect service! Talk to us about the recent surge in landlords taking up your service? Tax for landlords has become a little more complex and, in some instances, it’s not so tax advantageous to be a landlord, meaning some are looking into selling portfolios and others are looking to becoming limited companies as options. We’ve seen a 400 per cent increase in landlords taking up our service in the last six months alone. A lot are really keen on knowing more about the Airbnb option instead of your traditional long term rental option. Does that mean that putting your home on Airbnb is more tax efficient than a traditional long term rental? It really is dependant on personal circumstances but in a lot of the recent clients we’ve taken on, it has been more beneficial for them to consider that option. It’s a tough one to answer without chatting specifics but it’s worth any landlord having the conversation with their accountant or us. We’ll let them know what we think is best based on our direct experiences with many other clients in similar situations. Can you give us a little more information about the types of clients you help? We really can help any company, although because of the level of engagement we provide with company owners, it’s usually best suited to businesses that are less than two years old or companies with more than five staff because

payroll is included in the packages we provide. Apart from that, we can help companies who haven’t got the budget for a finance department but need that level of service from their accountant or bookkeeper. If a company doesn’t need a book keeper separately? How does that work? Our service is based on an extensive software package we’ve built that automates 60-80 per cent of daily tasks. It’s the call centre of accountancy services, and that time saved means our clients get their time back to put into their business. The costs saved means we can send your accountant out to you every month to keep track and update you on your finances. For us, ad for our clients, it’s putting the personal touch back into accountancy. Listen to Lee’s Podcast from Radio Cardiff on their website, and for information on Olympus Accountancy Packages ranging from £97 – £267 a month (depending on turnover), head to their website. ■

OLYMPUS ACCOUNTANCY Cardiff Business Centre, Priority Business Park Vale of Glamorgan, CF63 2AW 0800 689 5957 www.olympusaccountancy.com

T H E A L B A N Y G A L L E RY PETER KETTLE RCA Everest Basecamp

YOUNG AT ART Selected works from emerging Welsh artists

12th March - 4th April 2020 Both exhibitions can be viewed on our website from 8th March www.albanygallery.com

74b Albany Road, Cardiff, CF24 3RS | T: 029 2048 7158 | E: info@albanygallery.com Gallery open: Monday-Saturday 10am-5pm, Sundays and Bank Holidays 11am-4pm

Serviced apartments located in Cardiff Bay Apartment Hotel located in Cardiff City Centre Global network with access to 65,000 apartments worldwide

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GOING FOR A BURTON A brand new exhibition follows the remarkable story of how Richard Jenkins, from the Welsh village of Pontrhydyfen, was transformed into Richard Burton – and an international star. Becoming Richard Burton, which opens 4 April at National Museum Cardiff, will feature personal items on display to the public for the very first time. These include his diary, written as a 14-year-old schoolboy at the beginning of the Second World War, which gives a glimpse into his teenage life in Port Talbot. Other objects loaned to the museum by the Richard Burton Archives at Swansea niversity include early stage costumes from the film Cleopatra, in which he was irresistibly cast as Mark Antony to Elizabeth Taylor’s Egyptian queen, and history was made. ai a e Cardiff e i i i Becoming Richard Burton ar ri a d r i e e er e ae

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WHAT’S ON 21 March - 17 April

John Partridge is Emcee in the new production of Cabaret coming to the Wales Millenium Centre on 24 March


CABARET It’s 1931, Berlin is a haven of divine decadence, and the legendary Sally Bowles is about to take to the stage at the infamous Kit Kat Klub. The Tony Award-winning Cabaret features show-stopping choreography, dazzling costumes and those legendary classic songs including Money Makes The World Go Round. Donald Gordon Theatre, WMC; www.wmc.org.uk

27 March

DENIS & KATYA The compelling documentary opera follows the accounts of the

true story of 15-year-old Russian teenagers Denis Muravyov and Katya Viasova who, in November 2 6, lived their final hours watched by social media as they filmed while in the midst of a standoff with Russian Special Forces. Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama; www.rwcmd.ac.uk

31 March – 4 April

THE RED SHOES Matthew Bourne’s double Olivier award-winning smash hit production returns with its ballet within a ballet tale of obsession, possession and one girl's dream to be the greatest dancer in the world, which turns into a nightmare. See page 15 for more from Matthew Bourne. Donald Gordon Theatre, WMC; www.wmc.org.uk

12 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk

7 – 11 April

LADY CHATTERLEY’S LOVER When Clifford Chatterley returns from the war a wounded hero, his young bride Connie does her best to care for him. But neglected and alone, she instigates a love affair with the gamekeeper, Mellors, a relationship that bridges the social divide and challenges convention. Based on the book written by DH Lawrence, which when published in 1928, caused a huge scandal resulting in a trial New Theatre Cardiff e ea re ardiff

MUSIC / BANDS 29 March

CARDIFF POLYPHONIC CHOIR Handel’s thrilling setting of Psalm

110, Dixit Dominus – ‘the Lord said’comes from his early stay in Italy. Composed when he was only 22, it’s an exuberant showcase for the young man’s prodigious talent. The Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama; www.rwcmd.ac.uk

1 April

RODDY WOOMBLE The lead vocalist of indie rock band Idlewild – known for his enigmatic lyrics, warm baritone voice and consummate gift for a tune – has released five solo albums to date, enhancing his solid reputation as one of Scotland’s finest songwriters. Clwb Ifor Bach; www.clwb.net

6 April

PUSSYCAT DOLLS Multi-platinum pop sensation


KIRI PRITCHARD-MCLEAN Previous shows have seen her tackle structural racism, sexism, child grooming, adoption and emotional abuse, so what seemingly unfunny subject has she picked to turn into laughs this year? Chernobyl? The shrinking size of Creme Eggs? No, empathy is her material of choice. ee C ee

2 April

MATT FORDE Former adviser to the abour Party, Matt is now one of Britain’s leading political comedians and is talking broken pledges and fake deadlines in his new stand-up show Brexit, r ed ear, and the reviews have been vote winning. Sherman ea re er a ea re

4 April

FOIL ARMS AND HOG The Irish comedy trio, Sean Finegan, Conor McKenna and Sean Flanagan, are best known for their online sketches which have pulled in over million hits. They deliver scripted nonsense, twisted characters, and unintentional improvisation. a id a da id a ardiff

ABOVE: This stunning work, which is part of an exhibition at the Albany Gallery until 4 April, was made by the artist Peter Kettle using discarded material found on his trek to Kathmandu BELOW: Portrait With Hat by Francisco Rodríguez can be seen at Chapter as part of its Art in the Bar exhibition

Pussycat Dolls are reuniting for their first tour in over years. Nicole Scherzinger, Ashley Roberts, Kimberly Wyatt, Jessica Sutta, and Carmit Bachar make up the group that sold more than 54 million records worldwide and achieved eight K top singles including Don’t Cha. r i re a Cardiff r i are a ardiff

9 April

CARDIFF MUSIC AWARDS SHOW 2020 Enjoy a night of celebration, with 22 awards to be given out, live music from local talent including Adwaith and Panic Shack, street food vendors and a lot of Cardiff’s musical talent under one roof. ra ed ardiff i a ard

13 April

THE NIGHT CAFÉ The NME said of this poppy uartet, who have just released their debut album 0151, ‘The Night Café prove they’ve got the chops to go the distance. Brooding, but still dazzlingly catchy.’ e e e ardiff i


PETER KETTLE In March 2 , Peter Kettle and Alexander Green travelled to Nepal to hike to Everest’s basecamp. Along the two-week trek, Peter collected litter to be recycled into mixed media, en plein air paintings, and sketches through the use of collage, acrylic and watercolour ink, to create a fantastic body of work. a a er a a a er

Until 4 May

MARTIN PARR IN WALES This exhibition brings together, for the first time, photographer Parr’s works that explore different aspects of Welsh life and culture, including male voice choirs, coal mining, and the seaside. In the Reardon Smith ecture Theatre on 2 March, actor Michael Sheen will be interviewing him about his work. a i a e Cardiff e ae

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Until 10 May

IMAGINE A CASTLE This touring exhibition, which is supported by Art Fund, of five paintings from the National Gallery, ondon, will complement and highlight the rich and diverse representations of castles in the museum’s existing collections. Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales; www.museum.wales

Until 10 May

STANDING STILL Artists Nick Davies, Sasha Kingston and Jayne Walker find inspiration from the coastal geology of South and West Wales, exploring the rock strata and geographical contours shaped by weathering and erosion - the rhythms and cycles associated with the natural world. The Makers Guild Wales; www.makersguildinwales.org.uk

Until 21 May

FRANCISCO RODRÍGUEZ As part of its ongoing Art in the Bar exhibitions, the work of Francisco Rodr guez is currently on display. Referencing graphic animations and Japanese drawings, with intriguing situations and a cast of sinister characters, the painter hints at the tradition that inspired the post-impressionists. Chapter; www.chapter.org

Until 2021

MISSION: PLANET EARTH Embarking on a mission through time and space, this virtual reality journey shows what Wales looked

like millions of years ago, including giant bugs, birds, and dinosaurs. Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Cardiff e ae

21 March – 10 May

MEL BRIMFIELD Taking its title from The Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan, this exhibition From This World, To That Which Is To Come, adopts the parable’s infamous fictional pilgrimage as an allegory for a collapse of mental health and fraught journey to recovery, via a multi-media exploration involving sound installations, sculpture, and films. Chapter; www.chapter.org

2 – 18 April

GLYN OWEN The exhibition entitled And the Barricades Stretched from Tonypandy to Madrid: Retracing the Journey of the Welsh Volunteers of the Spanish Civil War is a photojournalism exploration by Welsh photographer Glyn Owen of the 2 Welsh volunteers who travelled to Spain to take a stand against fascism during the Spanish Civil War of 36-3 . Cardiff ardiff ade

SPORT 28 March

CARDIFF DEVILS V BELFAST GIANTS eague, face off pm. i a re a Cardiff er a i a i ae ardiffde i

14 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk


ABOVE: Kiri PritchardMclean makes empathy funny at the Glee Club on 2 April LEFT: See Idlewild frontman Roddy Woomble at Clwb Ifor Bach on 1 April BELOW: It’s last supper talk with Jay Rayner at the Sherman Theatre on 26 March


A QUICK CHAT WITH... MATTHEW BOURNE Renowned choreographer Matthew Bourne first produced The Red Shoes as a stage show in 2016, which went on to win two Olivier Awards. His new production of it is being performed at Wales Millennium Centre from 31 March – 4 April. Here, he shares his memories and interpretation of the ballet classic.

ABOVE: Hanuman langurs are just one of the amazing natural world stories being told at Motorpoint Arena on 26 March

10 April

CARDIFF CITY V BLACKBURN Sky Bet Championship, kick off 3pm. Cardiff Ci ardiff i f

OTHER 26 March

PLANET EARTH II: LIVE IN CONCERT 2020 Hosted by TV presenter Liz Bonnin, this brings sensational footage from the award-winning BBC series and guarantees to make audiences feel closer than ever to the planet’s spellbinding animals, the stunning landscapes

and wildlife dramas. r i re a Cardiff r i are a ardiff

26 March

JAY RAYNER Based on Jay Rayner’s book of the same name, La er e ea Life i e i e a i , in this tour the food critic investigates our fascination with last suppers, reveals how he was introduced to oysters by his late mother, and the time he almost burnt down a hotel because of his love for snails in bubbling garlic butter. Plus, the audience get to design their own last meal. er a ea re ■ er a ea re

“The Red Shoes is considered by many people to be one of the most important and beautiful films ever made in the way the camera was used and the way it captured dance on film for many people for the first time. It is very influential and I saw it when I was very young. I didn’t really know anything about that world as I was more into musical theatre and film musicals. My parents didn’t go to the ballet. “It was an introduction to an extraordinary world which was glamorous and eccentric and full of these larger-than-life characters. It was also this great story about people who spend their lives being creative, creating beautiful things and the passion they have to do that. “It was a challenge to tell the whole story of the human characters and the central love story and conflict. All those things have to be told through dance. It is bringing these things to a different medium. The larger-than-life emotions in The Red Shoes are good for dance. You are already on to a winner with those obsessive relationships and passion and conflict.” “A lot of people have that conflict in their lives between work and the relationships they are having whether it is their partners, or other family members, or their friends. I think that is where people can relate to this story.” For more: www.wmc.org.uk

www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 15

FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE VISIT US ONLINE AT:WWW.VALEVETCENTRE.CO.UK Cardiff: 233 Cathedral Road, Pontcanna, Cardiff, CF11 9PP. E-mail: cardiff@valevetcentre.co.uk | Phone: 02920 004007

Barry: 7/8 Ty Verlon Ind Est, Cardiff Rd, Vale of Glamorgan, CF63 2BE. E-mail: info@valevetcentre.co.uk | Phone: 01446 739739



Move over Ant & Dec. Make way Edina & Patsy. Stand aside Batman & Robin. Our dynamic duo are in town and they’re here to give us the low down on the Cardiff high life

ardiff’s latest talk of the town is the green, green grass of The Botanist. Opening its glorious doors just a few weeks ago, and revealing what looks to be an outside, but on the inside, this botanically-inspired restaurant is flourishing. And after our visit we can see why. We became those people who look over at other people’s tables because all of it looked so appetising. The stand out dish for us was definitely the sharing camembert starter, which was a bread bowl beautifully drizzled with some sort of honey like glaze, which you tear apart to dunk into the warm cheesy centre. The hanging kebabs are their staple main, so how could we not?! Ours was the pork kebab dripping with a sweet chilli sauce and wow! Our taste buds couldn’t have been more elated. So we thought. Because then we had the Botanist

cocktail – a delight for the eyes and for the palate! Our good friend Claire pulled together a great line-up of talent for a personal fundraising event at Wow Bar, raising funds for her friend who’s been very ill, and for her to take her children somewhere special. It was a very intimate and well attended event, with the likes of Peter Karrie (of West End fame) and Gracie Jayne from e i e id offering up their time to perform. It’s always an honour for us to compare such personal and meaningful events, especially when we get to see our friends performing on the bill too. Congratulations to all involved for raising just over £400. On the topic of shows, the stars of a ra a e returns to Cardiff to a sold out St David’s Hall – hosted by KlubKids UK. Getting to meet some of those was a pleasure because they’re so hilarious and have such huge personalities. Some of their acts are also tailored to current world politics and topics too, which

Bread making made fun with Domenico Scarpetta

With Jay Page, centre, general manager of the blooming lovely Botanist

Fundraising at the Wow Bar with organiser Claire Brown, Peter Karrie, Jenna Curtis, and Miss Felicia

makes for a very interesting and at times jaw droppingly, on-themoney show. We had an amazing afternoon at The Celtic Manor, watching a bread baking cookery demo. I know what you’re thinking, ‘Bread? You went to watch bread?’ But seriously, it was the best thing since sliced bread. It was hosted by guest chef and experienced artisan baker, Domenico Scarpetta, who has the most enthralling personality and was easily able to captivate his audience with his wit and energy. We told him he should get his own YouTube channel! He can regularly be seen at Abergavenny food market and is a long-time supplier to the Celtic Manor. After we learnt how to make perfect bread, we went out to eat (we said we enjoyed watching someone else make it, not that we were going to be doing it ourselves). This time it was a three-course meal at the Steak On

Six restaurant and plenty of wine. Because wine goes with steak, and that’s the law. A huge honour bestowed upon us recently was also the invite to become ambassadors for the most incredible charity, Dreams & Wishes, who work to makes dreams of seriously unwell children come true. We’ve followed their journey over the past few years, which includes winning a Cardiff Life Award in 2018, and have always thought them an incredible Welsh charity. Can we please ask that everyone reading this does just one thing? Please follow Dreams & Wishes on social media and be prepared to learn about their humbling and inspiring work. ee da e i e adi Cardiff r a e f e ae i er r a ea d a ra r a d a e

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A beautiful, bespoke space Find the bathroom of your dreams at THE TAP END BATHROOMS in Pontyclun


t is our unrivalled passion for creating beautiful spaces which sets us apart from other bathroom stores. For us a bathroom is not just another room; it is a space which requires careful planning and consideration so that you can relax after a hard day at work, wash away your worries or prepare yourself for the day ahead. It is about so much more than a necessary room. It is about how form and function meet to create personal and unique spaces that our clients will love for years to come. We carefully select the brands that make our designs come to life, pairing quality and style, and never one without the other, to give you a design led finish for every budget. We specialise in bathrooms for real homes, and realistic budgets – as such our projects can range between £3,000 – £30,000 for design and supply of goods including tiles per room (not including installation). To accompany our design and supply service we can pair you with a recommended fitter who can create our design with their skills and experience in bathroom fitting. Like our product ranges we have a recommended fitter for every kind of bathroom, whether that is just changing a bath into a walk-in shower or creating a luxury spa like space complete with steam shower.

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Make your bathroom beautiful with a little help from The Tap End. At our high street based independent bathroom showroom you will be greeted by one of our team, which boasts national award-nominated and award-winning designers. You can see a snapshot of the brands we offer and the quality of the goods and tiles. We will talk you through our design service by showing you before and after photos of our work and examples of the design process from start to finish.

“PUT SIMPLY...WE LOVE BATHROOMS.” Bespoke products available to achieve your dream scheme. For clients who seek a high-end luxury finish we allocate you a designer that suits your project and brief, and we can supply a vast range of bespoke services. Bespoke products range from made-to-measure mirrors to coloured, stone, metal and textured baths, coloured sanitary ware, coloured brassware, coloured, patterned and textured shower screens and bespoke/made to order vanity units. In addition, we can colour match radiators and other metal elements to coloured brassware to give you a complete set of products rather than mix and match brassware finishes. Bespoke services are at a premium and will give you an individual unique finish to cherish.

Find us and follow us on social media! We regularly post our work of client homes on our social media channels. Find us and follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. For home inspiration we also recommend a website called www.houzz.co.uk there you will find an array of inspiring photos all of the home and interiors. If you use this website we have an online portfolio via this site – again just search The Tap End and you can follow us there too.

Client reviews are a great way to check out our brand. You can read reviews, all from genuine clients, via our Houzz account, Facebook and Google. We pride ourselves on our service and products and are always thrilled to hear from clients about their experience. Of course, building work is always stressful, but we try and make it as easy as possible. If you opt for a recommended fitter, we will project manage your bathroom from the showroom in conjunction with the fitter free of charge to further alleviate stress. ■

If you are embarking on a bathroom project, we would love to hear all about it, contact us in store to see if we may be the right fit for you. The Tap End, 57 Llantrisant Road, Pontyclun, CF72 9DP 01443 449056; www.thetapend.design f thetapend  thetapend.design  The Tap End  TheTapEndDesign www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 19


E: morgansfurniture@yahoo.co.uk


LYN MORGAN FURNISHINGS Bespoke Sofas & Chairs Designed by you, made by us!

We have over 40 years’ experience in handcrafting bespoke soft furnishings, where every piece is lovingly re-created to your specification using only the best materials. Our bespoke sofas are fully customised to any style, size, fabric and fillings, that is why we have never made the exact same sofa twice. We create truly unique items for your home whatever your requirements. We will work with you to achieve the look and comfort that you want, just for you. Our showroom displays some of our most popular sofa and chair designs - you can pinch the arm off one, the leg off another and have the chair or sofa sized up to meet your needs!

Alternatively, if you have a piece of furniture that fits you and the space available, or that you just love, then our re-upholstery service may be the way to go. We will even alter your existing furniture to suit your lifestyle now. We also specialise in made-to-measure curtains and blinds. With our fabric room offering a vast choice of curtain fabrics, poles, trimmings and finials, we’ll be sure to find the right match for you. So if you want a home that’s unique and different from the rest, come and visit us, we’ll be happy to offer friendly advice and will of course assist you along the way.

E: morgansfurniture@yahoo.co.uk Court Farm, Llanover, Abergavenny, NP7 9HY Open Monday to Saturday, 9am - 4pm

T. 01873 855230 | W. lynmorganfurnishings.co.uk


FOLLOW YOUR ECOCONSCIENCE Cardiff’s experts share eco-friendly interior tips and trends By Sarah Moolla

Natuzzi’s latest collection Ergo has brought together many aspects of the company’s commitment to sustainability

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e’re all looking for ways to become more environmentally friendly, including our own homes. We know the mantra of upcycling, recycling, mending, and making-do but what about when we really do need to buy new or start over? Fortunately, we live in enlightened times and much of the design industry is leading the way with sustainable and planetfriendly products and innovations for the home. As Esther Milardi, design director at Di Oro Interiors, says, “The concerns that challenge the world of interior design is how aesthetics can best be informed by environmental considerations. The good news is that the range of stylish and low-impact products is greater than ever from companies like Pentatonic, who work with design companies to create beautiful products from trash.” Here, Esther, along with other interior experts, shares ways our homes can be both sustainable and stylish.

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We should all know by now that plants are kind to the environment, and aesthetically enhance a space, but indoor greenery will also enhance our lives, as Justine Bullock co-creator at The Tap End explains, “Plants improve the quality of air and they absorb excess moisture in the room to assist in reducing humidity. We often design little niches, shelves, and surfaces into our bathroom designs, to create the perfect spots to add some greenery.”


Justine also advocates maximising all the natural light in your home. “It is crucial for lifting the mood – the more you can get into your home, the better.” It’s also free and saves on lightbulbs so, if possible, arrange rooms so they face the sunnier south. Also consider double glazing and new window frames if needed so the insulation is effective, no heat escapes, and no unwanted cold enters.

Eco-friendly paints like Farrow & Ball are becoming more of a conscious choice

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“The range of stylish and low-impact products is greater than ever ” ABOVE: Innovative design company Pentatonic use trash to create their products; BELOW: A Chalkhouse handmade kitchen will always outlast the cheap, mass produced ones


Plastic is definitely not fantastic. To make your home’s interior ecofriendly, you need furniture made from natural sustainable wood and other organic or sustainable materials. Cheap furniture is often made from compressed shaving and sawdust that is bonded together with synthetic glues and resins that often contain formaldehyde, which is a potential allergen to humans and carcinogenic to animals. As Ceri Hill, design director of Chalkhouse, says, A handmade kitchen will always outlast the cheap, mass produced ones with their limited lifespan and whilst having bespoke furniture may cost more initially, the inherent beauty and increased durability of a handmade kitchen will pay dividends both financially and ecologically in the long term. This ethos has always been very much part of the brand of Italian designers Natuzzi, as Angela Coles, store manager of Natuzzi Italia Cardiff Bay, points out, We only use wood from renewable forests, our foams and fillings are totally free of the ozone depleting gas freon and other harmful agents, and our leather selection and tanning is all carried out in our own tannery where we follow strict environmental regulations. It is important to our customers that they are choosing furniture that has been designed and produced with respect for the environment. Natuzzi’s latest collection Ergo has brought together many aspects of the company’s commitment to sustainability. The furniture boasts FSC-certified wood from sustainably managed forests adhering to strict environmental, social and economic standards, says Angela. Its components interlock seamlessly, so that each piece can be put together with no need for metal parts or screws. The water-based adhesives used are formaldehyde-free. All finishes are made with natural wax. The only metal used is the aluminium, an endlessly recyclable material. The textile fibres used for the upholstery are organic linen, wool and cotton. The mattress is in per cent natural latex and the light bulbs used are low energy consumption EDs.

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Even on a smaller scale, covering a chair or creating a cushion, going green is an easy option these days with endless choices. As an example, Rachel Morgan of Lyn Morgan Furnishings, cites a new fabric called Lisbon, “Designers Guild have created Lisbon recycled yarn, an innovative recycled fabric range which is woven using yarns recycled from the fashion industry. Cardiff-designer isa Ridge- alentine also echoes just how much things have moved on, “There are more and more products you can use in your home to avoid plastic, which also look great. It’s never been easier to buy less, but buy better and buy beautiful, while also being kind to the planet.” When working with her clients, Esther reveals she always steers them towards ecologically-sound items such as shower tiles and shower trays created from per cent recycled glass, and soft-pile rugs made with recycled plastic bottles like those by Jennifer Manners Design.”


A lot of cheap flooring is populated with synthetic materials and vinyl, which is made out of toxic plastics. A great alternative to vinyl is wood, and surprisingly, cork. There’s also Tirex carpet, which is made from recycled tyres, and is extremely hard-wearing. A great forever choice could be tiles, like those available from Mandarin Stone. Made from natural materials, they don’t require the destruction of other natural resources like wood or plant material. Just ensure you’re not cleaning them with toxic cleaners, which is not good for the tiles, for the planet, or for you. The Tap End’s Justine says, “We have tiles that are made from recycled materials and range from floor and wall tiles, and decorative recycled glass mosaics. We think there is something quite lovely about a product that has had a former life in some shape or form. We also do natural mother of pearl tiles that are a by-product of the food industry so these are ethically sourced as well as being absolutely stunning.” THIS PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE: Lisbon is an innovative recycled fabric woven using yarns recycled from the fashion industry; The Tap End builds in spaces for greenery in its bath designs; Jennifer Manners soft-pile rugs are made with recycled plastic bottles;

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“Light is crucial for lifting the mood – the more you can get into your home, the better”

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Patrick O’Donnell, the international brand ambassador Farrow & Ball which is available from Leekes, says, “Ecofriendly products are becoming more of a conscious choice when it comes to decorating the home, and higher on the agenda when it comes to choosing paint for your walls. Look for paints like ours that have water-based formulations, meaning that they are much kinder to the environment and safe to use in all rooms of the home. The low or minimal VOC content means that they are low odour and emit no nasty fumes to breathe in.” Another much-loved paint choice for upcycling existing furniture is Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint, which is available from the homeware and vintage furniture store, Beti Biggs. It is a non-toxic and virtually odour-free paint that has minimal volatile organic compounds, and has been specifically created for furniture. It can be applied to most surfaces, and very rarely requires any priming or sanding before painting, meaning a saving of time and materials.


There are other factors, other than our sense of civic duty, driving the green issues as Esther explains, “The Welsh government has a plan to ensure that all new homes from 2025 will be heated and powered only from clean energy sources. To design for waste reduction and for energy e ciency, there are many practices that I seek to implement in my projects. Whether I am working on new builds or older houses, there are many basic steps to take, like convincing clients to invest in lighting control systems that reduce electricity usage by 40 per cent.” Marc Hailes, managing director of MWH Heating and Plumbing, has also absorbed many green practises into his business as a matter of course. He says, “We at MWH have been taking a proactive stance for several years now, in order to lower emissions, reduce our and our customers carbon footprints. “For example, solar thermal is a well proven technology delivering energy and carbon savings. The system works by harnessing is the sun’s energy and converting it into heat which is then transferred into your home or businesses heating system as hot water or space heating. We also specialise in ground source heat pumps, air source heat pump, biomass heating, and greywater harvesting. These are all ways to ensure our homes help work towards a better future for our planet.”

Sustainability is made easy by upcycling existing furniture using a paint with minimal volatile organic compounds, such as Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint

THE INSIDERS’ DIRECTORY Beti Biggs (stockists of Annie Sloan paint) 1 Romilly Crescent, Pontcanna; www.betibiggs.com Chalkhouse Kitchens, 3 Bessemer Close, Cardiff Tel: 029 2023 3308 www.chalkhouseinteriors.co.uk Di Oro Interiors Tel: 07979 824 433 www diorointeriors.co.uk

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Leekes (Farrow & Ball stockists) Cowbridge Road, Talbot Green, Pontyclun; www.leekes.co.uk Lyn Morgan Furnishings Llanover, Abergavenny; tel: 01873 855230; www.lynmorganfurnishings.co.uk Lisa Valentine Home www.lisavalentinehome.co.uk

MWH Heating and Plumbing, tel: 029 2221 7197; www.mwhplumbing.co.uk Natuzzi Italia Cardiff Bay, Havannah Street; tel: 02920 488 698; www.natuzzi.co.uk The Tap End, 57 Llantrisant Rd, Pontyclun; tel: 01443 449056; www.thetapend.design

Proud Finalist of

Best in Property


PERSONALITY No matter what your budget or requirements may be, MWH Heating & Plumbing are dedicated to providing you with the best quality service.

Curtains, Blinds, Shutters, Wallcoverings, Carpets, Lighting Call us on 02920 614966 or visit us online www.curtain-raisers.co.uk 2 Kelston Road, Whitchurch Cardiff CF14 2AJ

www.carolinecrowther.com We have a client who is a professional, successful, business man, 60’s, well-presented living in South Wales. He is considerate and warm, sociable and confident, looking for an attractive, feminine, articulate, petite lady who enjoys the finer things in life. Please contact us for more information (no fee) and we can tell you more. For a professional and personal service email mail@carolinecrowther.com or call 01934 744788

Reach the best in the west Affluent, active and influential and just a call away Cardiff Life 01225 475800

Our fully accredited and insured team offers work of the highest standard for all services including:




Boiler service Boiler installation Radiator installation Gas Certification

Blockages Burst pipes Leaks Overflows

Design Installation Refurbishment Wetrooms




HELLO PETAL! John Mather goes digging around at the RHS Flower Show Cardiff


pringing up in the centre of the capital from 17 – 19 April is the RHS Flower Show Cardiff. Now in its 5th year and found in Bute Park, the show celebrates the best of springtime, inspiring gardeners to creatively use their outdoor spaces, and encourages visitors to learn and grow as gardeners. Along with blooms, botanicals, bunches of flowers, and a plant-packed floral mar uee, there’s a shopping to be had, a host of demonstrations and workshops to enjoy. Here we meet some of the homegrown talent on display DIBLEYS NURSERIES is a family-run nursery, which was named Master Grower at RHS Cardiff in 2018. It’s owned by brother and sister Gareth and Lynne Dibley. Why RHS Flower Show Cardiff?

As a rural business based in lanelidan, North East Wales, surrounded by beautiful countryside but far away from even the closest shop, RHS Flower Show Cardiff is a valuable opportunity for us to promote our business and share our award-winning collection of indoor plants with visitors at the show. One of our bestselling plants is Streptocarpus Cariad’, the Welsh for love or darling, which was bred by ynne and launched at RHS Cardiff in 2 5. How had RHS Cardiff changed over the years?

ROUALEYN FUCHSIAS is based in Trefriw and specialises in fuchsias. It is by three generations of Jones’ – Doug and Gwyneth Jones and their son Colin, and Colin’s daughter, Bethan What do you like about the RHS Flower Show Cardiff?

RHS Cardiff has always been a firm favourite with Roualeyn, presenting the first major opportunity of the season to meet regular customers and to welcome new ones to the joys of fuchsias. We love the show for its spring colour and the start-of-the-season buzz amongst our fellow growers. How do you get fuchsias ready in time for display?

April is actually very early for fuchsias to be in colour, so it is a massive challenge for us to get them grown and flowering out of season. Growing lights are used at staggered times during the winter months to help. Roualeyn Fuchsias has won six Gold and eight Silver Gilt Medals at RHS Cardiff over the past 5 years.

“We love the show for its spring colour and the start-of-theseason buzz amongst our fellow growers”

We have seen RHS Flower Show Cardiff develop over the years into a lovely rural fair in the heart of a city, which helps represents the Welsh capital. Dibleys has won four Gold and eight Silver Gilt Medals in its time at RHS Cardiff. How do you ensure your plants are show ready in time for RHS Cardiff each year?

April is a challenging time for us to get our plants into flower. We grow them under glass so we can control the temperature, but plenty of spring sunshine is still needed to encourage plants to grow. At this year’s show, ynne will create a display based on the concept of living walls. What’s your spring gardening tip?

Now’s the time to either, pot up your houseplants into slightly bigger pots using good houseplant compost, or start feeding plants. Foliage plants need a high nitrogen food whilst flowering plants need a regular feeding of a high potash food.

Any near misses whilst displaying?

One year our carefully and precisely loaded lorry broke down en route to the show. Having made every effort not to jostle the blooms during the journey, it was with some trepidation that we watched the entire lorry being hoisted up and down on a garage inspection lift. Fortunately, no flowers were damaged in the process and they made it safely to the showground.

RSPB CYMRU are the Welsh arm of the national conservation charity and are focussed on creating homes for nature on their reserves and campaigning for the protection of nature in law How has the RHS Flower Show Cardiff helped with your message?

We have found that visitors really connect with our cause and our work and are extremely passionate about the great outdoors. We really enjoy the fun, friendly atmosphere of the show and find that interest in our projects continues to rise year on year. What questions are you asked the most at the show?

For the last 5 years it has consistently been How do I encourage wildlife to visit my garden?’ and Which plants are best for bees, butterflies, and insects?’ What can visitors expect from RSPB Cymru this year?

OPPOSITE PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: Dibleys Nursery Master Grower Display in the

floral marquee at the RHS Flower Show Cardiff in 2018; Gwyneth, Doug, Bethan and Colin Jones at Rouleyn Fuschias; Champion RHS Master Grower Adrian Scamp displaying his family’s award winning daffodils; The Xardin Urban Gallery designed by Brent Purtell at last year’s show; The wildlife friendly installation of RSPB Cymru in 2014; Hattie Sherwood admires the tulip contenders from under her spring bonnet which was created by florist Jonathan Moseley

We have been part of the design team for the Taff Bank Garden, which is designed to represent the riverside habitats found with the three river systems in Cardiff. With this exhibition, we hope we will help raise awareness of the pressures and benefits of the habitat to the people living in the city. For more: www.rhs.org.uk

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By delivering a powerful explosion of beautiful pollinators with every grenade, the Kabloom Butterflybom Seedbom is guerrilla gardening at its easiest. Pull the pin and throw the biodegradable seed bomb, which contains a nectar rich wildflower seed mix including cornflower, oxeye daisy, red campion and forget-me-not, into any areas that are in need of a little flower power butterfly love. er L d

eed La e e ar



i a ai a e fr e ar


e ar

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COTSWOLD SET OF TWO GARDENER'S BASKETS, £27.95 Two sturdy wicker flat baskets with large looped handles, these are ideal for carrying tools or plants around the garden. From The Place For Homes, Sutton Road, Llandow, Cowbridge; www.theplaceforhomesltd.co.uk

WILD YOUR GARDEN: CREATE A SANCTUARY FOR NATURE, NATURE BY JIM AND JOEL ASHTON, £14.99 Better known as The Butterfly Brothers, these landscape gardeners suggest ways to make your space, whatever its size, more wildlife-friendly. r a e e ree Cardiff


Earth to gardener, earth to gardener – this is your outdoor space calling. It’s in urgent need of attention and these accessories will help ST FAGANS THERMAL CUP, £6.50 Gardening is thirsty work so keep your liquids warm or cold in these thermal cups designed by Ceri Staziker. From St Fagans National History Museum, St Fagans; www.museum.wales

RHS BRITISH BLOOM GLOVES, £19.99 Practical design meets a stunning new collection inspired by botanical illustrations and watercolours dating back to the 63 s. From West Hampton, 6 Penny Lane, Cowbridge; www.westhampton.co.uk

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SMART GARDEN FOXGLOVE SOLAR LIGHT, £16.99 Beautiful glass-petalled solar-lit flowers that will bring any flower bed, border, or pot, to life at night. They also happen to look fabulous by day. From Leekes, Cowbridge Road, Talbot Green, Pontyclun; www.leekes.co.uk

ED’S CHOICE SCOTTISH FINE SOAPS GARDENER’S THERAPY HAND WASH, £9.99 Refreshing hand wash made with purifying Tea Tree oil that will leave hard working hands feeling cleansed and refreshed. From Hamptons Penarth, 10 Ludlow Lane, Penarth; www.hamptonspenarth.co.uk

ALDSWORTH OUTDOOR STORAGE BOX, £180 Crafted from spruce with a grey wash, this robust unit comes with a slanted hinged galvanised sheet metal lid to offer maximum protection from the weather. From Lisa Valentine Home; www.lisavalentinehome.co.uk

GRÄSMARÖ 3-PIECE GARDENING SET, £3 One trowel, one hand rake and one bulb trowel made of durable plastic and reinforced with fibreglass, and are stored on one ring for easy access. r ea Cardiff err ad Cardiff www.ikea.com

CROCS CLASSIC CLOGS, £29.99 Never mock the croc – gardening-friendly features include being washable, odour resistant, lightweight and flexible. From Pavers stocked by Pugh’s Garden Village, Morganstown; www.pughsgardencentre.co.uk

BEE MIX SEEDBALLS, £5 Seedballs are protective clay balls filled with hundreds of wildflower seeds to encourage butterflies and pollinating insects and a pinch of chilli powder to deter slugs and snails. From Not Socks Again, 1 Windsor Terrace, Penarth; www.notsocksagain.com

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Where girls learn without limits Since 1860 at HOWELL’S SCHOOL, LLANDAFF GDST, we’ve been encouraging our girls to believe that nothing is beyond their reach


t Howell’s School last summer, 73 per cent of all GCSE grades were A*–A, 52 per cent of all A-level results were A*–A grades, and 80 per cent of all grades were A*–B. A Howell’s girl is free to be herself – to be ambitious, to be competitive, to be creative, to be a sports captain or a geek, or a clown. Our girls mature into young adults in a culture free from gender bias, encouraging them to believe that nothing is beyond their reach or consideration. All this develops a self-confidence and resilience that stays with them throughout their lives. There is research currently that shows girls’ confidence starts to decline at the age of eight years old. Howell’s ethos ensures this doesn’t happen, and instills in the girls the confidence they need for a successful future. We delight in watching them grow to become more assertive and willing to take risks, to ask questions, and to make mistakes. At Howell’s School, Llandaff GDST, girls’ thrive in a single-sex environment where academic achievements are always celebrated, and these

go hand-in-hand with co-curricular activities that inspire and challenge them. From playing chess to performing in a rock band, debating current affairs to playing cricket, we believe that education doesn’t stop when the bell rings at the end of the school day. Our five-acre site has an incredible feeling of space for a city centre school, with significant green space, a swimming pool and sports complex with modern pavilion and floodlight, all-weather pitches. Our fleet of school mini buses brings in students from Cowbridge, Penarth, Newport, and across Cardiff. ■

For more information about Howell’s, please visit our website: www.howells-cardiff.gdst.net www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 41



Tom and Belinda O’Donnell

Clare Bugg and Annie Cartwright Tony Curtis, Wendy Hobbs, Rhys George and Gareth Hobbs

Dyfri Owen, Jo Perkins and Mark Perkins

Suzanne Wilcox, Caryl Thomas, and Mark Wilcox


Alannah Bale, Tom Bowen and Luke Thomas

The Cardiff Life Awards 2020 Finalists’ & Sponsors’ Reception took place at Kuku at Park Plaza on 24 February. The pre-Awards celebration was attended by more than 150 people who enjoyed an evening of wine, canapes and networking. Old friends caught up and new alliances were formed. The attendees also enjoyed a speech from Greg Ingham, Chief Executive of publishing house MediaClash, which is organising the annual Awards. Photos by Owen Mathias; www.owenmathias.com

Steve Moulton, Adam Lloyd, Paul Davies and Christian Brookfield

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Steve Khaireh and Sarah Moolla

Amelia and Beth Morris, Rebecca Rice, Amy Holland and Charlie Morgan Laura Williams, Mark George and Genevie Jones

Raechel Mattey, Nerys Royal, and Laura Som Gavin Hawkey, Gwion, Rodrigo Rashinthe and Kyle Lake

Anthony Obaid, Sharon Owen, Josh Partridge and Shakira Obaid

Caren Rockey, Tracey Horrigan, Ann Tudball and Tim Harling

Giovanni Malacrino, Daisy Magill, Liz Andres, and Rory Fleming

Wendy Hobbs, Wayne Courtney, Nathan Wyburn, and Tony Curtis

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Scilla Williams and Fran Caunt

Gemma Jones , Karen Jones and Scott Jones

Lynne Hughes, Mark Drakeford, Stuart Nixon, Susan Kolhass, and Olga Ciccarelli Kath Foot, Marie Nixon, Scott Dale and Sian Lloyd

Chelsie Robinson

Huw Roberts, Steven Webster, Anthony Thomas and Jason Evans


Lynne Hughes and JPR Williams

Principality Stadium was the venue for the recent launch of the MS Society’s Stop MS Appeal, which needs to raise £100 million for research. Around 90 people enjoyed a drinks reception and a three-course dinner, along with speeches including closing words from Lynne Hughes, the MS Society Country Director for Wales. Entertainment came in the form of an auction hosted by Arfon Haines Davies, and music from singer Scott Dale and soprano Chelsie Robinson. The event is hoped to have raised £7,500. Photos by Eiona Roberts www.mssociety.org.uk

Kath Foot and Arfon Haines Davies

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Mai Massingham and Alex Moss

Susan Kolhass and Olga Ciccarelli


The Welsh chef brings it home with his new Pontcanna venture and Sarah Moolla discovers it’s a world of happy every afters (and the starters and mains bring about a lot of contentment too)


nless you’ve been hiding under a mountain of discarded Taco Bell wrappers, you have probably already heard about Thomas by Tom Simmons. It opened less than two months ago in Pontcanna and is already doing a roaring trade in great word of mouth reviews. The Tom in question is Tom Simmons of Tower Bridge restaurant fame and was the youngest competitor to reach the uarter-finals of MasterChef: The Professionals in 2011. Originally from Pembrokeshire, he says his earliest memories are of “roaming farmers’ markets, foraging in the countryside, and harvesting his mother’s vegetable garden.” And he’s all about promoting Welsh food, which when you think about it, is a shocking rarity outside of Wales, but the Tower Bridge cockneys went crazy for his cockle popcorn, laverbread mayonnaise, leek bread, and Welsh lamb cawl. And now the local boy who’s done good is bringing it home. Thomas by Tom Simmons occupies the former Cameo Club, and while Tom’s reputation might be heavyweight, this place is spirit-lifting joy. The décor is simple with an old-school members’ club feel - wood panelled walls in racing green, polished par uet floors, plush yellow velvet chairs, crisp white linen, and a feeling of candle-lit exclusivity. But it’s not stuffy or pompous, this

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is a Thursday evening and the joint is jumping. There’s a good natured, relaxed vibe, and while we wait, drinking wine at the bar, we realise we could actually happily stay here all night sipping on a house speciality cocktail or two. Glad we don’t though because I’d have missed out on a meal I haven’t stopped dreaming about since. For the table comes sourdough bread served with a lightly whipped Marmite butter and a tangy, creamy leek butter, I’m slathering it on, worrying about them taking it away. And I’m cramming in the juicy gordal olives, which pop like sweets, and have ruined me for any other olive. The mini-mushroom croquettes with Caerphilly cheese are earthy, crunchy, and creamy, and are the kind of tapas you could eat 24/7. For starters, its diver-caught sweet, plump king scallops, with laverbread (which Richard Burton once referred to as the Welshman’s caviar), rounds of salty, pink pork belly, and a spiky, pungent cauliflower purée. My dining companion loves her Spain meets Wales inspired dish of barbecued leeks, with Jerusalem artichoke, and hazelnut romesco. She is equally smitten with her main of caramelised s uash risotto sprinkled with flakes of almonds and dotted with beads of Perl Las, a delicate blue cheese from Carmarthenshire. My fillet of beef is so soft, it almost collapses with a happy sigh, the red wine and stock jus adds a deep


aromatic glaze, with the green beans and confit shallots delivering a fresh garden crunch. Then there’s the chips. These are called chips, but they are not chips are we know them – they are rectangle, almost hasselback potato in form – deep fried, soft inside, and seasoned garlic butter, thyme, parmesan and a dash of magic. And as if Thomas by Tom Simmons isn’t special enough, it has an Andy. Every restaurant should have an Andy. A general manager who can welcome, advise, make you laugh and ensure that your night is a great one. Andy, who previously worked at the Cameo Club, gives us a whistle stop tour of the venue’s transformation including the speakeasy type bar above the restaurant, and the private dining area, which seats up to 18 guests, and where chef Tom will create a bespoke menu for your party. Back downstairs and there’s just enough time to fit in puddings of dark chocolate tart, with crumbled salted caramel and a generous scoop of yoghurt sorbet which is as richly divine and as decadently nourishing as I’ve come to expect of Thomas by Tom Simmons by now. However, I am starting to fret because I cannot find fault this review is going to look so superlatively one-dimensional, I fear I’ll be doing the place a disservice. So it’s a relief to find out I really don’t like the chilled rhubarb rice pudding with white chocolate and puff pastry. To me, hand on heart, it is yucky. (In the interests of full disclosure, my companion strongly disagrees as she gobbles it all up.) Everything else though, I could probably leave my other half for, run off to an island with, and live happily ever after. ■

e f eef i f ia a e i a a i DINING DETAILS Thomas by Tom Simmons, 3 – 5 Pontcanna Street, Cardiff, CF119HQ. tel: 029 2116 7800; www.thomas-pontcanna.co.uk Opening hours Tuesday to Saturday 12pm – 11.30pm, Sunday 12pm – 6pm Owners Tom Simmons and Lois Thomas Type of food served French, British with emphasis on Tom’s Welsh heritage and all dishes served exclusively from local Welsh produce Specialities Tom’s signature fish and chips are legendary, and the traditional roast served on a Sunday is a must

Vegetarian and vegan options: Yes, lots including miso carrots pearl barley and the caramelised squash risotto Prices starters: £7.50 - £14.50 Mains: £16.50 – £3 Desserts: £7.50 - £9.50 Disability access Yes Drinks Full bar including a range of craft beer, spirits and wines. The speakeasy style bar is open until midnight Friday and Saturday, and it’s worth visiting for the signature cocktails alone, which include Y Ddraig made with Victory gin, beetroot, coriander, and mead, and Pentre Ifan, consisting of Barti Ddu, Cointreau, pineapple, and milk Atmosphere Elegantly convivial

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Bowled over and on the up! Tucked behind the beautiful grounds of Bute Park and alongside the River Taff is SOPHIA GARDENS CARDIFF, a giant 16,000-seater stadium and the home of Glamorgan Cricket


ver the last few years, hundreds of thousands of people have flocked to the venue to watch the world’s best cricketers in action or to attend one of the incredible events the venue has become known for. Here, head of commercial Huw Warren and head of events and catering Amanda Simisker, look at what makes Sophia Gardens such a special place for its visitors. What makes Sophia Gardens a unique venue and sets it apart from other stadiums in Wales? Huw Warren: We’re home to the only Welsh county, which means this is the only place visitors can watch domestic and international cricket in Wales. Over the years we’ve seen some incredible matches here with the game’s greatest cricketers on show and that is something no other venue can offer. Then there is the location in Sophia Gardens itself which has been called the best walk in cricket. Cardiff is a great city and we have the best of it being a stone’s throw from town but also set in a stunning surrounding. Amanda Simisker: We’re extremely fortunate to be based in a beautiful location at the centre of Cardiff and have a versatile, multi-functional stadium that can adapt to each client’s needs. Over the last couple of years we’ve delivered events ranging from darts exhibitions in our National Cricket Centre to concerts on the pitch for over 2,000 people.

Huw Warren

Amanda Simisker

Q. What does Sophia Gardens and Glamorgan pride itself on? HW: We pride ourselves on the ‘Warm Welsh Welcome’ we give to all our visitors, whether they’re attending a Glamorgan fixture or a conference or event. All staff at Sophia Gardens recognise the importance of ensuring our guests receive our unique welcome and that is along every touch point, from our dedicated group of volunteers to our experienced stewards. AS: What sets Sophia Gardens apart from most other venues is our food service which is crafted by our team of full time chefs headed by John Chapman. Over the years they have forged an exceptional reputation for the consistent excellence of their food, using local and seasonal produce which we are extremely proud of. The venue has held a number of events over the last couple of years, but which one are you most proud of? AS: It’s difficult to answer due to our diverse range of events. We try our best to make each one perfect and take an enormous amount of pride when they thank us afterwards, which is what motivates us as a business. However, because I’m a big ABBA fan and it was our first outdoor concert, I would have to say ‘An Evening of ABBA’ back in 2018. HW: We’ve delivered lots of incredible events over the last few years, but due to the sheer scale and size of the tournament I would have to say the ICC Cricket World Cup last year. We held four group stage games here which took years of planning and it was a huge success for both the club and Wales.

What events are you hosting at the ground this year? HW: It’s a massive year at Glamorgan and obviously The Hundred and Welsh Fire is something that every cricket fan is talking about. We’re also hosting an IT20 between England and Pakistan in August which is looking like it is going to be played in front of a full stadium. What I’m looking forward to most however, is the return of the Vitality Blast, which has been moved to May, June and July and has opened up some new audiences to us and that is very exciting. We’ve already enjoyed a record breaking priority window and tickets for each of our seven matches are now on general sale. AS: From a non-cricket perspective we’ve got another jam-packed year of events at Sophia Gardens. We’ve already held a darts event at the venue for nearly 700 people and in May ‘An Evening of ABBA’ is returning which everyone at the club is very excited about. We’re expecting another sell-out crowd but there are tickets still available. We’ll also be holding Sophiaworks on 5 November for the third straight year and we have a couple of other events we’re hoping to announce shortly, so watch this space. ■

Sophia Gardens Cardiff Cardiff, CF11 9XR; 029 2040 9380 www.glamorgancricket.com

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Ann Tudball mobile: 07929191671 email: clarophotography10@gmail.com



It’s the city’s business


Capital ideas

Visitors to Techniquest will find an increased floorspace of 60 per cent

Wales’ largest science discovery will reopen in May to reveal its new look, along with 52 new exhibits


echniquest is about to open its doors to reveal the centre’s biggest refurbishment since it first opened in 1995. The project, which has been four years in planning, will see the science centre transformed with a new extension, a new gift shop and space for a new café facility, alongside the existing favourites of the full dome Planetarium and the Science Theatre. With an increased floor space of 6 per cent, Techniquest aims to engage more people

with STEM-related content and diversify its audience with the help of 52 new exhibits. Each exhibit has been created by German company, H ttinger and are in their final stages of construction, before being brought to Cardiff Bay for installation. Head of projects at Techniquest, James Summers, says, “It has been an aim of ours to change the perception of our centre and appeal to a wider demographic, and especially to an older audience. We’re confident these changes

will do just that – re-establishing us as a major player amongst science and discovery attractions in the UK. Our refreshed centre will include five key themes Biomedical Science, Chemistry, World Issues, Environmental Science, and Space. The earth uake simulator and virtual operating table are just a flavour of the fantastic new content people will find at Techni uest from this May. ” For more: www.techniquest.org

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Vale Spa staff celebrate their third World Travel Awards win

RIGHT: Founder Maia Banks

BOTTOM RIGHT: The Honeycomb Toys

& Books lends, as well as, sells toys


The Honeycomb Toys & Books, which opened its store in Grangetown last December, is also offering a toy library and a space for community events. Owner Maia Banks explains, “At The Honeycomb, I work to stock environmentally friendly toys, as well as locally made items and books that are inclusive of all genders, races, religions, and family types. “I also run regular free sessions for the community, such as story times and baby groups, as well as the toy library. People can register and borrow toys for a month for a very small fee.” Regular events at The Honeycomb include a weekly drop-in baby group and a twice weekly story/play session. There is also a monthly board game club. Maia has also collaborated with many local artists and community members to offer different workshops in craft activities such as ceramics, pumpkin carving, lantern making, and also Welsh language homework help for English speaking parents. She says, “I am striving to be an inclusive and affordable community space, not just your ordinary toy shop.” For more: www.thehoneycombtoys.com

54 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk

For the third year in a row, the four-star Vale Resort in Hensol, South Wales, has been named Wales’ best resort spa by an international awards body that recognises excellence in tourism. The Vale Spa, located in the Vale of Glamorgan, was named Wales’ Best Resort Spa 2019 at the 5th annual World Spa Awards. Stephanie Metson, marketing manager at the Vale Resort, says, “To have won this award not once, not twice, but three times, is testament to the hard work our entire team put in day in, day out. The World Travel Awards is recognised on a global scale and is an industry-wide benchmark of quality, so to meet its high standards more than once demonstrates our commitment to offering the best quality service.” For more: www.valeresort.com



The team at Cardiff Airport recently celebrated Wear Red for Wales and elindre Day and raised more than 5 for the Airport’s Charity of the Year, elindre Cancer Centre. Kylie McKee, deputy head of fundraising at elindre, says, We kicked off our Wear Red For Wales and elindre campaign at Cardiff Airport and it was fantastic to see so many staff supporting the campaign and getting into the spirit of the day. ardiff air r www.velindrecc.wales.nhs.uk


Cardiff’s Iris Prize GBT Film Festival director Berwyn Rowlands, who organised his first public film festival in Aberystwyth in 8 , has been selected in the Top at the British GBT Awards in the category Outstanding Contribution to GBT ife.’ Festival chair Andrew Pierce says, I’ve seen Iris grow from the inaugural film festival in 2 with a modest audience of ,5 to an annual celebration of over , who gather in Cardiff to witness the presentation of the world’s largest GBT short film prize. www.irisprize.org

Loosemores has been advising new business Project Blu who specialise in sustainable pet products

PET PROJECT Cardiff law firm oosemores has been advising Project Blu on its early stage investment from a group of S venture capital funds. Project Blu is a socially responsible brand revolutionising the pet accessories market by converting polluting materials such as ocean-bound plastic waste into top uality dog beds, cat beds, leashes and toys. Project Blu’s CEO Geryn Evans, explains, The idea for Project Blu was only conceived in December 2 8. Since then the business has accelerated at a rapid pace. We are now selling products across the globe and are very excited

to be part of the eap entures 2 2 cohort in os Angeles. Project Blu is proud to represent the Welsh start-up scene and prove that we can compete with the best on a global scale. Siôn Tudur, partner in oosemores corporate and commercial team, adds, This is a fantastic opportunity for Project Blu, as it aims to become a global leader for sustainable pet products. It is a business with great potential, and we hope this opportunity will be a springboard for tackling the environmental impact of the pet care industry. For more: www.loosemores.co.uk / www.projectblu.co


Human Resources and employment law support experts, HR Dept Cardiff Newport Monmouth, has made a key team appointment. Pan Tzaferi, has joined as an HR advisor, and says, During my time in the HR sector, I’ve supported clients from an in-house perspective at varying stages of growth, so it’ll be very interesting to support clients across a mix of sectors. www.hrdept.co.uk

Whilst on maternity leave, Sara Hampson-Jones came up with the idea for Shnwcs

Shnwcs Welsh language birthday cards score 5 out of 5 from this baby


Pan joins HR Dept Cardiff Newport Monmouth

Shnwcs, which designs contemporary Welsh baby gifts including bunting, nursery prints, cards and party products, has recently been collaborating with John ewis Cardiff. Founder Sara Hampson-Jones, who lives in Cardiff and sells via Etsy, explains, We have been invited to decorate their in-store changing and feeding area with our prints, and also had a pop-up stall last month. This is dream come true to a small independent company like myself. Sara set up the business in 2 5 whilst on

maternity leave after noticing the lack of baby products on the Welsh market Shnwcs’s first product was the baby milestone cards, which were, and still are, a great success, says Sara, who also blogs about being a full-time mum to her two children. I have created a strong community of Welsh language mums online. They have also been so supportive of Shnwcs from the first day, and there’s a great feeling of we’re in this together. For more: www.etsy.com

www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 55

“WE RESPECT OUR ENVIRONMENT, AND EVERYTHING WE CREATE IS DONE SO RESPONSIBLY” and a gentleman. I think we shared the same ethos that, just ordinary wasn’t good enough, let’s offer something better. He was one of our first customers, and he certainly helped us on our way to national sales. Do you get to visit Italy much?

Roger Mynett Director of the Cardiff Natuzzi stores, which specialises in Italian furnishing, talks trends, family, and visiting his dad’s Rhondda factory as a child Where are you from originally?

I was born in Cardiff. My family on my mother’s side were from Grangetown. I spent the early part of my childhood moving around as my dad advanced his career in sales and retail management but we came back to our roots when I was six. Who was your inspiration growing up?

My brother Robert and I had the same induction to the furniture industry, by sewing cushions, and visiting my dad’s factory up the Rhondda. Dad Brian Mynett has since been named in the furniture industry Hall of Fame, and he taught us everything.

Natuzzi was the first company to make leather sofas affordable, but its very rapid growth started in the 8 s, when Mr Natuzzi made a trip to New York, met with Macy’s, which in turn lit the fuse under the leather furniture boom. In 3, Natuzzi became the first Italian furnishing company to become listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Natuzzi has now evolved into a recognised brand worldwide. How would you describe Natuzzi’s signature look?

Mr Natuzzi founded the company in 5 and the company head uarters is in Santeramo in Colle, near Puglia, Southern Italy, and is the only truly global brand in home furnishing, with o ces and distribution across every continent.

Mr Natuzzi invented the style that became known as Natuzzi Style’. It was a casual style that was uni uely Italian, and is what others try to emulate. Nowadays the inspiration still comes from our roots in Puglia. We are also influenced by nature to create form that follows our Puglia heritage, a palette found in our countryside. Most importantly we respect our environment, and everything we create is done so responsibly (turn to page 24 to learn more about this).

What has made Natuzzi such a global success?

Tell us a little about the Natuzzi team...

Tell us a little about Natuzzi and the company’s background?

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Despite Natuzzi being a global brand, and the K being a most important market, with strong brand presence, we remain a family business. My brother Robert and I oversee the business, and both our wives are part of the team. We have a Cardiff o ce that takes care of all the K and Ireland, where we have a strong team in customer care. How does being in Cardiff benefit business?

Cardiff is a rapidly growing city, and it is constantly changing. Of course, new homes provide us with an organically growing market, but the evolution of our great city into a modern cosmopolitan capital broadens our horizons and, despite Brexit, our tastes have become more European. Any support from any other local Cardiff businesses you’d like to name check?

I had great admiration for Robert Maskrey, sadly departed. He was the owner of Maskreys, and was a visionary, a true professional

Yes, we make many trips to Italy, with our customers and franchise partners, to see new introductions, and plug in’ to all things Natuzzi. What trends have you seen in furniture and furnishings?

As homes become smaller, or more homes are apartments, I can see the need for further solutions to fit, not just the room, but access too. We are already selling more modular sets. We are selling some smaller sofas, but in luxurious finishes and coverings. A smaller living room still deserves beautiful furniture. How do you see the industry evolving in the near future?

It is hard to predict who will survive. So many retailers spend millions advertising how cheap they can sell you a sofa, believing cheapest wins. As long as we continue to sell more premium, we always have customers coming back, and I see Natuzzi’s business going from strength to strength as awareness of our brand increases. Is there a particular piece of Natuzzi you covet yourself?

In 2 8 we launched the Torsion table by Mario Bellini. The supply is very limited as it re uires six months for each table. It is a work of art, and such a piece of natural aesthetic beauty.

r re a i a ia Cardiff a a i di i Cardiff a e www.natuzzi.co.uk


Meet the wills and probate lawyer Cardiff ‘s legal experts talk about their business and the importance of their services


SOLICITOR HARDING EVANS SOLICITORS 01633 244233 / 029 2267 6818 www.hardingevans.com Talk to us about your firm Harding Evans Solicitors is a well-established regional law firm which delivers a specialist range of legal services to commercial and private clients. Originally based in Newport, we also have an office in Cardiff. We have won a number of awards including the Award for Outstanding Achievement and Business of the Year at the high profile South Wales Chamber Business Awards and Law Firm of the Year at the prestigious Welsh Law Awards. What are your own specialist areas? Wills, powers of attorney, and probate. Have you always wanted to work in this field? As soon as I started practising law I realised I was suited to the role of a private client solicitor. I thoroughly enjoy that my work allows me to meet people from all walks of life. I feel that I am able to offer support and empathy at

58 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk

a time when it is most needed. It certainly is challenging, but rewarding at the same time. Tell us a little bit about the team you work with Our trusted team of solicitors offer an extensive and invaluable service to clients dealing with all issues relating to wills, trusts, tax, probate, lasting powers of attorney, and court of protection. Sensitivity and understanding is paramount in the work we undertake for our clients. Can you give us a recent case study that helps illustrate the kind of work you do? Recently I met with a client who had been diagnosed with the early onset of dementia. The diagnosis had made him determined to plan ahead by granting a lasting power of attorney on his terms whilst he still had capacity to do so. Understandably my client knew he was in control, and it made sense from both a practical and financial point of view to appoint someone he trusted as an attorney before potential problems arose. We see countless situations where clients have not planned like this for the future and see families facing increased financial burden, delay, and heartache attempting to resolve such situations.




PARTNER, QUALITYSOLICITORS J A HUGHES 029 2061 9700; www.qualitysolicitors.com/jahughes


Please tell us a little about J A Hughes. When was it established and what is the company’s background? J A Hughes is both the largest and also oldest solicitors’ practice in the Vale of Glamorgan. The firm was founded by John Arthur Hughes in Barry in 1888 and since that time has grown hugely and now has offices in Barry, Penarth and Cardiff. Which areas do you specialise in? Wills and probate matters, together with court of protection matters and tax planning issues, advice on care of the elderly and powers of attorney, and continuing health care claims.

Why should I make a will? Simply put, everyone should make a will. Without a will it is the state who directs who will inherit your estate following a specific criteria which may result in an undesirable outcome. A will however puts you in control; you control who deals with your estate upon your death by appointing executors, and you control who is to benefit from your estate by naming the beneficiaries. If you have a partner but are not married, it is essential that you make a will. This is because the law does not automatically recognise partners as having the same rights as spouses or civil partners. In your will you can also appoint guardians for your children and specify how your funeral should be dealt with.

Duncan Kennedy

When someone dies, can I decline to act as an executor if I am named as such in their will? An executor can choose whether to settle the estate themselves or can appoint a solicitor to act on their behalf. The role can be declined completely if so wished. This is done by signing a formal renunciation. This will not affect their entitlement under the will if they are also named as a beneficiary. A different option is for an executor to have their ‘power reserved’. This means that they would not be involved in the administration but still have the right to step in at a later stage should it become necessary. If the executor declines to act, another beneficiary may need to take on those duties. Similarly, if the administrator under the intestacy rules does not want to administer the estate personally, they can appoint a solicitor to act on their behalf.

What is a beneficiary to a will? A beneficiary is an individual or organisation who is named in your will and who will receive a benefit from your estate upon your death.

Megan Jones

How often should I review my will? We would recommend that you review your will every 4-5 years, or as your circumstances change. A change of circumstances could be marriage, separation, divorce, or the birth of a child. It is important to be mindful of the provisions of your will and update it accordingly.


HEAD OF PROBATE, WILLS AND TRUSTS ROBERTSONS SOLICITORS 029 2023 7777; www.robsols.co.uk Tell us a little about your firm Robertsons has been in existence in Cardiff for over 100 years. The firm has gone through various changes during this time, but we’ve always been based in central Cardiff, providing family law services. When did you join Robertsons? I joined Robertsons in 2018 as the Head of Probate, Wills and Trusts, having previously worked in another central Cardiff law firm following my graduation from Portsmouth University. What are your specialist fields? My core field is that of estate administration, trusts, wills, and lasting powers of attorney. I’m accredited by the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP) and I also hold an accreditation by Solicitors for the Elderly. In real terms this means that I’m a specialist in family inheritance and succession planning

for our clients. Whilst I’m accredited to work with elderly clients, I do actually work with clients of any age! Who are your main clientele? An inevitability of life is death and so the process of administering an estate or a trust is something that will affect us all. Our clients vary enormously, and include those who have small estates, through to those with a high net worth and others who require trust administration. Our clients are generally from in and around Cardiff and the Vale. What advice would you give to people who are thinking about using your services? What are the key questions should they ask themselves? There is one key aspect really – what do they want to happen to their assets when they die? Without a will their wishes will not be taken into account. The law of intestacy will take over and those that inherit may not be the ones that the deceased wanted to inherit. It is therefore essential to make a will so that your wishes are taken care of.

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Coronavirus: advice for the workforce Sarah Alford of BERRY SMITH LAWYERS explains...


s public concern around Coronavirus grows, we have seen an increase in queries from individuals asking for advice on how their employers should deal with various employment issues that may arise as a result of the Coronavirus. We therefore set out a list of frequently asked questions in respect of pay. The Coronavirus may result in workplace absences for a number of reasons. 1. Sickness absence for suspected or diagnosed Coronavirus infection Employees will be entitled to the usual sick leave and pay entitlements including statutory sick pay or contractual sick pay, in the event this is provided in the employment contract or within any policies. The Prime Minister has stated that employees will get statutory sick pay from the first day off work, not the fourth, to help contain coronavirus. 2. Absence for self-isolation There is no right to statutory sick pay if not unfit for work. Despite the above strict legal position,

guidance from the independent government body Acas suggests that it is good practice for an employer to treat absence as sick leave and follow the usual sick pay policy or agree for the time to be taken as annual leave. Employers may therefore want to take a flexible approach to the unexpected absences that the virus may cause. If an employee is able to work remotely, they should receive their usual pay. If they are unable to work remotely then, unless there is a contractual right to pay in these circumstances, there is no legal entitlement to pay. The government has made it clear that if NHS 111 or a doctor advises an employee to self-isolate, they’re entitled to statutory sick pay. Entitlement to contractual sick pay would depend on the contractual terms. 3. Absence from work at employer’s request The entitlement to usual pay would continue unless there is a contractual right not to pay. 4. Absence from work due to being scared of risk of infection

Sarah Alford

If the ability to work remotely exists, an employee would be entitled to usual pay. There is no entitlement to pay if an employer requires an employee to come into work and they refuse. 5. Absence for childcare Emergency leave exists to provide employees with a right to reasonable amount of time off work to assist or arrange care for ill dependants (e.g. if a child has the virus), and with unexpected breakdown in care arrangements (e.g. child is quarantined or school is closed). This is unpaid – unless pay is provided in the employer’s contract or policies. ■

For more information please do not hesitate to contact us at 029 2034 5511 or employment@berrysmith.com


Freedom, time, and money: the truth about your retirement Cardiff’s leading wealth management experts PENGUIN explain why earlier financial planning can help you to lead your best life possible, both right now, and in the future


t is human nature to long for freedom, but in our society freedom has a price tag. In order to live the life you want on your terms, you must become financially free. Pensions are a measure of time and freedom and without financial planning, you can sacrifice far more of both, than you actually need to. Most of us spend much of our lives at work, trading time for a reasonable standard of living. What if there was a way to have more time and to reach your freedom goals earlier? Are you working out of necessity rather than out of choice? To many, this seems like a luxury that only the wealthy can afford, but early financial freedom is not simply the preserve of the rich. They are the product of financial planning, some imagination and basic maths. Here at Penguin we help you to explore what your retirement vision looks like and then work out the cost. For many people, their dreams are more affordable than they had imagined. They have focused on overpaying mortgages, contributing to pensions and have assumed that the state pension retirement age is their own personal cut-off date. In doing so they fall into the ultimate pension trap, they focus on the money and forget time and freedom.

Client story We met Gwen and Stephen* when they were both 57. They planned to retire at 65 and had eight years of working life ahead of them. Do they sound like you? l They owned their own home. l They had two grown up children and their

first grandchild on the way.


l They had accumulated a variety of

To understand your retirement vision, you need to ask the following questions: l What will you do? l Who do you want to be? l Where will you go? l When will you go there? l What else will you do? l Who will you help? l Who will you spend your time with?

l They wanted to travel abroad for 4-6

In short, do you know how much you need to live the lifestyle you want? Are you financially planning or financially hoping? If you have the dreams and would like Penguin to do the maths, we can give you back the most precious commodities of all – time and freedom. n

When asked how much money they had accrued, they didn’t really know. When asked how much they needed to enjoy the life they wanted, they didn’t know. They had focused on saving and forgotten time and freedom. After a conversation with Penguin, they were able to put a price on the life they wanted. They retired two years later, just before their 59th birthdays.

pensions and investments. weeks a year. l They had some bucket list items they

want to do – watch a Rugby World Cup abroad as well as walk the Great Wall of China, and visit Fiji. l They want to be around for their grandchild and help with nursery and school runs.

*Client names have been changed.

Penguin Wealth Planners Ltd 029 2045 0143; info@penguinwealth.com www.penguinwealth.com www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 61

THE GENERATION GAIN eading Cardiff experts advise on the ages and stages of good financial planning for a healthy, wealthy life 62 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk


s you go through different stages of life, your financial goals are likely to evolve and alter. What’s right for you when you start working may change if you start a family. Teenagers may worry more about paying for their education, while those about to retire could be thinking pensions and wills. Here, we ask a few of the city’s leading financial firms to focus on some of life’s key stages and offer their advice.

WEALTH MANAGEMENT Stuart d’Ivry, director, independent nancial advisor, and pension transfer specialist at ure ealth Management BIRTH “Children and grandchildren often create conversations around finances and long term savings plans. You may think it’s too early, but saving money into your newborn’s pension can result in an attractive tax benefit. Placing 2,88 into a pension will immediately benefit from £720 tax relief from HMRC. If savings access is required from age 18, then a junior ISA may be more suitable. It is possible to save up to £4,368 each year into a junior ISA. These allow a tax-free environment for savings to grow. The allowance is an annual one, so it is a case of use it or lose it.” TEENS AND YOUNG ADULTS “With the maximum annual tuition fee rising to over £9,000, it is more important than ever to start putting money away and saving for children’s university costs. Although your children may not be earning any income, they still have their personal annual income allowance of 2,5 . Smart financial structuring could utilise this ensuring that you won’t need to pay unneeded tax on your investments to pay for this added expense. If your child has had full contributions of £4,368 into a junior ISA since birth, every year until age 18, then this investment based on a net growth rate of 4 per cent pa could be worth in excess of £114,000 at age 18. What a lovely deposit for a first house! Craig alfrey, managing director and certi ed nancial planner at enguin ealth

EARLY ADULTHOOD Once your children are no longer financially reliant on you, you can start putting as much as possible into your ‘Future You’ fund. We all want to help our children, but not enough people look after themselves first. The Bank of Mum and Dad is one of the Top 10 lenders of money for houses in the UK nowadays. We hope you can help your children, but make sure you help yourself first by maximising all tax reliefs and free money available. Penguin has released a video on The Bank of Mum and Dad to help, which you can watch on our Penguin egal YouTube channel.

It’s never too late to start financial planning

“The Bank of Mum and Dad is now one of the Top 10 lenders of money for houses in the UK” MIDDLE AGED “The best £1 you will ever save is when you’re born as it has the most time to grow – the next best time to save that is right now. Putting your money into a pension is a great way to ensure that your wealth is continuing to grow somewhere you’re not able to touch it. Be aware that the later you start paying into a pension, the harder it’ll be to live off when you finally reach your Financial Freedom’ date. Make sure you’re also aware of the maximum contribution, and find out how much employers will match your contribution – you could be missing out on ‘free money’ if you’re not already doing this.” Aaron Hawkins, director and chartered nancial planner at Haw insThomas ealth Management APPROACHING RETIREMENT “Financial planning is not really about products, investments and tax wrappers, it’s about people. And when we’re looking at families, a financial plan is no matter for

the lone ranger. Each plan intersects with the others, and so every member of the family should take part in the discussion. For example, Andrew, aged 55, is the only son of Michael, see below. Andrew is currently employed and fast approaching retirement. There are a number of planning ideas and opportunities that someone around the age of 55 might want to consider: Do they have a retirement forecast plan? Can they afford to retire when they would like? Do they need to make changes to contributions or funds? Are they fully utilising their ISA on an annual basis? Are all allowances and exemptions being used? Can they afford to help their children and grandchildren? If so, how can they do this whilst protecting funds?” RETIRED Michael, he is 80-year-old man, fairly wealthy, who has been retired for a number of years. Does he have a lifetime plan for inheritance tax using cashflow modelling? Can he afford to make gifts? How should trusts be used? Does he have an updated tax e cient will and a full power of attorney? Are all inheritance tax allowances and exemptions being utilised? How is long-term care to be funded should it be required in the future?” For more: www.purewealthmanagement.co.uk; www.penguinwealth.com; www.hawkinsthomas.co.uk

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Channel View Estate sits adjacent to a section of the River Taff

Aerial view of Channel View

A NEW OUTLOOK FOR CARDIFF’S CHANNEL VIEW ESTATE Architectural practice Powell Dobson have been appointed by Cardiff Council as lead architects of a design team on the new masterplanning project for the regeneration of Channel iew Estate. The Channel iew Estate, which sits in the very heart of Grangetown, is one of the largest districts in the south of the city, and is bordered by Riverside, Canton, and Butetown. Ann-Marie Smale, managing director of Powell Dobson, says, We are delighted to have secured such a fantastic project within our home city and we are looking forward to working with Cardiff Council to bring our shared vision for the regeneration of Channel iew to life. Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities, Cllr ynda Thorne, adds, Our ambitious vision for the regeneration of Channel iew will provide a more attractive environment and better connected local community, as well as delivering more affordable housing in an area of high demand. Powell Dobson Architects will lead the design team which includes Blake Morgan Project Management, Cambria Consulting, McCann Partners, Amity Planning and WYG andscape. For more: www.powelldobson.com

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PROPERTY Exhibition


At the Cardiff MIPIM launch last year Future planning for Cardiff


The MIPIM (Marche International des Professionals d’Immobilier), considered the world’s largest property exhibition, which was due to happen in France this March, has been rescheduled to 2–5 June due to growing concerns related to the coronavirus (Covid-19). The Cardiff MIPIM 2 2 group are still hoping to attend the event held in Cannes, with the aim of showcasing all of South East Wales’ businesses and inward investment opportunities to the world. The Cardiff At MIPIM website states, Cardiff and the Cardiff Capital Region will continue its drive to promote its ambitions for development in the region to the international real estate world at MIPIM 2 2 . ed by Invest in Cardiff, the Cardiff Capital Region and partners in the fields of development, property consultancy and architecture, Cardiff will showcase a host of development, investment, and occupier opportunities throughout the city.” The event attracts thousands of people each year, including 5, investors, 4,8 developers, and 5 journalists from across the globe. Keynote speakers in June are former French President Nicolas Sarkozy and Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple Inc. r re ardiffa i i

Home buying

OFFICE UPGRADE Having moved into Cardiff city centre last year, Portabella, the Cardiff-based property developers, have carried out a comprehensive refurbishment of their Nickel Yard o ce on Baker’s Row to reflect their design-led ethos and to create a working environment for the team to inspire future developments and projects. They say, “We collaborated with many existing suppliers alongside some new partnerships and are proud to have created a workspace which reflects the personality of our business. r re ra e a Looking good at Portabella

HOUSE RULES James Thomas of Savills Cardiff shares his view of the city’s property scene

“Towards the end of last year, buyers were cautious about the future prospects of the market and sellers were reluctant to expose their properties to modest demand. However, this year, we have seen appetite return amongst buyers, who are feeling more confident and as a result, we have seen a huge increase in new buyer enquiries and viewing numbers, as well as requests for valuations from prospective sellers. A bustling city, Cardiff offers some of the very best cosmopolitan living found in the UK yet enveloped in an array of jaw-dropping coastline and countryside.” Family homes in the established areas around Cardiff continue to drive demand, offering a wealth in local amenities and straightforward commutability to Bristol, Bath and the Midlands, whilst apartments in the city centre and Cardiff bay area continue to remain desirable with professionals and first-time buyers. The election may seem a distant memory, with widespread reports of a post-election bounce, however while sentiment has certainly lifted, and new buyer interest risen sharply, the market fundamentals have not changed overnight and there are many unknowns facing the economy as the Brexit deal is negotiated this year. The indicators are that maintaining the balance between buyer and seller expectations will remain critical to keep the market moving this year.” For more: www.savills.co.uk

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www.pablack.co.uk Prestige homes from Peter Alan

Lake Road West, Roath Park ÂŁ799,950 EPC = E pa black Llanishen 02920 618552

Fronting highly prestigious Lake Road West with scenic views over the Lake, this detached large and impressive house of character includes many Art Deco features. Four bedrooms, down stairs cloak room, 15 ft lounge, 15 ft sitting room, breakfast room, pvc sun lounge, kitchen, utility room. Gas heating, extensive private parking, 32 ft garage and large gardens. No chain.

www.pablack.co.uk Prestige homes from Peter Alan

Llewelyn Goch, St Fagans ÂŁ485,000 EPC = C pa black Whitchurch 02920 612328

A stunning generous well designed detached double fronted modern residence. Located in a private select close with outlooks that extend across to open fields. Providing first class living space with three reception rooms, five double bedrooms, cloak room, 19 ft kitchen & breakfast room, 16 ft dining room, 16 ft lounge, utility room, three bathrooms, double drive, 18 ft garage, sunny landscaped gardens. pvc double glazing, gas heating.



THE BIG WINDSOR Elsie Chadwick explores the glorious past and the bright future of this remarkable Cardiff Bay development

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“Crittallstyle shower screens…are what all the best dressed bathrooms are wearing right now”


f there was an example of the positive regeneration that has been happening in Cardiff in recent times, it is this Big Windsor conversion. A Grade II listed building, nicknamed locally as the Big Windsor to distinguish it from the nearby Windsor Arms pub, it has most recently taken the form of the Juboraj Indian restaurant, which closed down in 2 8. Previous incarnations have included a post-World War Two restaurant called The Big Windsor Hotel run by French chef Abel Papa’ Magneron. In the 4 s and 5 s it gained a reputation for being one of the best restaurants in the country, and was rewarded with a pla ue, that’s still in place and reads, In the di cult days following the war 3 - 45, Abel Magneron, 8 - 54, here achieved a gastronomic standard which contributed to the further glory of the entente cordiale’ entente cordiale translating as warm understanding’. Now the distinctive property is undergoing a complete transformation, which will hopefully be

offering a warm welcome to its new occupants. ocal property development company, uin Co, bought the building in December 2 8 and whose alterations have been, according to their website, sympathetic to the listed building, with the fa ade and roof structure left untouched having been originally built in 822 as a public house.’ While the renovations of the basement remain for commercial purposes, the first and second floors of this Stuart Street building have been converted into four, two-bed apartments, and are due for completion by this August. Inside the apartments, which here are CGI imagined, the vision is clearly one of contemporary style and high-end finishes. From the luxe little touches like polished black nickel switches and sockets to the grand life-enhancing wooden sash windows and decorative traditional wall panels which are replicas of the ictorian originals, this contemporary interior design scheme has been created with a thoughtful and respectful awareness of the building’s significant and worthy past. It takes the modern with the old and melds them beautifully the

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engineered oak plank flooring has been supplied by Cowbridge Firm, Broadleaf Timber, while the electric heating from Dimplex is centrally controlled with app access to allow control when out of the home. The open-plan living space has brass fixtures and fittings to complement the charcoal Shaker-style kitchens with marble-effect uartz worktops and Neff appliances, which include a wine cooler and double oven. The strikingly bold bathroom uses a rare marble called calacatta used for tiles, believed to have been the Italian artist Michelangelo’s marble of choice. Showing the developer’s bang-on-trend credentials is the Crittall-

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style shower screens, which, with their black-edged, industrial lines, are what all the best dressed bathrooms are wearing right now. An aspect the developers have made total use of is that glorious Cardiff Bay view, thanks to those huge timber sash windows. There’s a wealth of splendid activities on The Big Windsor, Mermaid uay doorstep including upmarket bars, stylish coffee shops, theatre offerings and of course a huge range of international cuisine. We like to think Abel Papa’ Magneron would have a warm understanding’ for his former home’s metamorphosis and its new surrounds.

HOUSE NUMBERS Guide price £259,950 to £299,950 Apartments available Views



Bedrooms For more: CPS Homes, Cardiff Bay; tel: 029 2048 0490; www.cpshomes.co.uk


HAMPTONS PENARTH Set over two floors in a beautifully converted former Victorian market and meeting hall, Hamptons is a haven of unique, design-led occasional furniture, lighting, home interiors and gifts. If you simply need a beautiful greetings card or something gorgeous for the home we’ll be delighted to assist you. 10 Ludlow Lane, Penarth, CF64 1EA Tel: 029 2070 5391 www.hamptonspenarth.co.uk


“I wanted to be a stunt man when I was younger”


afraid, when he got annoyed and spun around swearing and giving me the middle finger. My instinct was to photograph the moment. nfortunately, I had the picture confiscated immediately after I developed it in the dark room, but I’ve never, ever forgotten that image.

NEIL PESTICCIO We put Cardiff photographer, who is also known as Mister P, in the frame to talk Cardiff Shooters, taking pictures, and finding inspiration Neil is a photographer and founder of the Cardiff Shooters, the creative photography group whose ethos is about “connecting everyone from amateurs to professionals to share knowledge, experiences and ideas.” The group, which is open to all and includes videographers, graphic designers, creative directors, models and makeup artists. Together they work closely with local venues, businesses, and individuals to develop ideas, projects, and shoots. I did my own thing at school and was a bit of a loner, but I did get on with the majority of

people, including the teachers. When I put my mind to lesson times, I did well but I’ve always had a short attention span, so I did a fair bit of day dreaming. I wanted to be a stunt man when I was younger, probably due to watching far too many action T programmes in the 1980s. I’d bash into random things while out on my push bike just to perfect the crash landing. The first thing I ever photographed was a bully when I was ten years old. I’d been winding him up during a summer holiday club at Chapter Arts. We were doing photography and I’d been mouthy to show him I wasn’t

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I started my photography journey by taking candid pictures of people throughout the daytime in Cardiff city centre and Cardiff Bay. I look for intimate moments in conversation, the way that their actions emote what they are saying or doing in their relationship to one another in a visual conversation.

I’m constantly working with and for Cardiff Shooters. Building up the website, researching locations and potential models, arranging meets and events, and looking for companies who would like to collaborate with us. Cardiff Shooters host meets throughout the year. We work closely with local venues and businesses, such as the beautiful Insole Court, Ramp world Cardiff, the Camera Centre K and Sony to name a few.

I’ve been very lucky to collaborate with Matt Pritchard from MT ’s ir a e on numerous occasions including capturing the inside working of his Sleep When You’re Dead barber and tattoo shop. We’ve made a great friendship and I always look forward to working with him.

Our meets range from photo walks, themed shoots/portrait meets, long exposure/light trails, landscape, freestyle/sports and more. We also encourage videographers to get involved alongside the photographers as we love seeing footage from the events. Cardiff Shooters also provides a great social platform on both Instagram and Facebook, and we regularly feature local work promoting and exposing the abundance of local talent.

I’m an avid fan of Cardiff TV and get my daily dose of Sam and uke in the mornings who keep me up to date with the goings on in and around Cardiff. I use the city as a playground to experiment with new techniques and skills to see what I can creatively bring out of the dark.

I’m also a big fan of printing work, rather than just looking down at a laptop or phone screen, it’s so refreshing actually holding your work in your hands, smelling the ink, and displaying it up on the walls for people to see. It also acts as a conversation starter for visitors.

I occasionally get creative block but having such great friends with whom I can have good conversations, means we generate random ideas and keep pushing to keep bettering ourselves. Also as a street photographer all I have to do really is walk around this city to find my creative inspiration.

Our next photography exhibition is in summer this year, which will give local creatives the opportunity to showcase their works in a lush coffee shop in the heart of Cardiff called The ittle Man Coffee Co. ■ r




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Cardiff Life - Issue 217