CELEBRATING THE BEST IN THE CITY, PENARTH & THE VALE
ISSUE 238 / JUNE 2021 / £3
ISSUE 238 / JUNE 2021 / PRIDE AND JOY
U, BE YAOYS ALW YOU BE
FATHER’S DAY GIFTS RUSSELL T DAVIES QUEER EMPORIUM TAFWYL 2021
IT’S PRIDE MONTH! WE’RE CELEBRATING THE PEOPLE AND PLACES THAT MAKE CARDIFF AN LGBTQ+ HUB
don’t know about you, but I’m a little bit obsessed with the sitcom Schitt’s Creek. The thing I love about it more than anything, apart from Moira’s innovative pronunciations, is the fact that it normalises LGBTQ+ relationships and treats the topic as non standout. Dan Levy, the writer and star of the show says, “We are writing a world that examines the transformational eﬀects of love when the threat of hate and intolerance has been removed from the equation. While that’s not a reality for many, our goal is to shine a light out there that asks the question, ‘What if it was? Wouldn’t we all be happier if we were able to love out loud?”. And on that note, welcome to our LGBTQ+ issue of Cardiﬀ Life magazine. June is Pride Month, and this city is Wales’ LGBTQ+ hub, so we’re celebrating. Vibrant and diverse, Cardiﬀ is bustling with inspiring people, awesome ventures, epic events, and game-changing activists. On page 9, we’ve spoken to some incredible local individuals, all of whom have bettered the world in their own ways, including acclaimed screenwriter Russell T Davies; former rugby ref Nigel Owens; Lisa Power, who co-founded Stonewall with Sir Ian McKellen; and Brookside actor Stifyn Parri who had British TV’s ﬁrst gay kiss. We’ve also dived into businesses and collectives; there’s the UK’s ﬁrst ever queer emporium, the world’s largest LGBTQ+ ﬁlm prize, and inclusive groups making extraordinary moves here. Our interviewees haven’t held back either; there’s pure honesty, grit and emotion poured onto these pages. Crucially, we’d like to point out, this isn’t an issue of Cardiﬀ Life that can only be enjoyed by the LGBTQ+ community; this is a magazine for everyone. There’s often too much focus on the fact a business or an event is LGBTQ+ friendly, but that can sometimes segregate them instead of making them inclusive, when all that’s ever really sought is equality and for everyone to feel welcome and safe. As drag legend Dr Bev says on page 38, “Cardiﬀ is a melting pot of communities, not just our LGBTQ+ one, and we should be celebrating all of them; each individual section of our community enriches us.” And Nigel Owens puts it perfectly too, on page 15, when he says, “It’s not about tolerance, it’s acceptance. Equality means equality. You shouldn’t be treated any better, you shouldn’t be treated any worse. You shouldn’t be ticking boxes. We want a society that is fair for everybody. What you want is to have a good place for people to be themselves, and never forget to have a joke and a laugh as well.” Thank you to everyone who has contributed to this special issue. See you next time. #CardiﬀTogether, always
n i ddim amdanoch chi ond rwy’n dwlu ar y gyfres gomedi sefyllfa Schitt’s Creek. Fy hoﬀ beth am y gyfres, ar wahân i’r ﬀordd wreiddiol y mae Moira yn ynganu geiriau, yw’r ﬀaith ei bod yn normaleiddio perthnasoedd LGBTQ+ ac yn trin y pwnc fel pob pwnc arall. Medd Dan Levy, awdur a seren y sioe, “Rydym yn creu byd sy’n archwilio eﬀaith drawsnewidiol cariad pan nad oes lle i’r bygythiad o gasineb a diﬀyg goddefgarwch. Er nad yw hynny’n wir am fywydau llawer o bobl, ein nod yw gofyn y cwestiwn gobeithiol, ‘Beth pe bai hynny’n wir? Oni fyddem i gyd yn hapusach pe baem yn gallu caru’n hollol agored?’. Ac ar y nodyn hwnnw, croeso i’n rhifyn LGBTQ+ o gylchgrawn Cardiﬀ Life. Mis Meheﬁn yw Mis Pride, a’r ddinas hon yw canolfan LGBTQ+ Cymru, felly rydym am ddathlu. Mae Caerdydd yn ddinas fywiog ac amrywiol sy’n llawn pobl ysbrydoledig, mentrau rhyfeddol, digwyddiadau epig ac ymgyrchu dewr. Ar dudalen 9, rydym yn siarad â rhai unigolion lleol anhygoel y mae pob un ohonynt wedi newid y byd yn eu ﬀordd eu hunain. Yn eu plith y mae’r sgriptiwr o fri, Russell T Davies; y cyn-ddyfarnwr rygbi, Nigel Owens; Lisa Power a sefydlodd Stonewall gyda Syr Ian McKellen; a Stifyn Parri a fu’n actio yn Brookside ac a oedd yn rhan o’r gusan hoyw gyntaf ar y teledu ym Mhrydain. Rydym hefyd wedi bod yn chwilota mewn busnesau a mentrau cydweithredol: emporiwm queer cyntaf y DU; gwobr fwyaf y byd i ﬃlm LGBTQ+; a grwpiau cynhwysol sy’n gwneud gwaith neilltuol. Nid yw’r sawl y buom yn eu cyfweld wedi dal yn ôl chwaith; fe welwch chi onestrwydd pur, dewrder a llawer o emosiwn ar y tudalennau hyn. Un peth hollbwysig yr hoﬀem ei nodi yw nad rhifyn i’w ddarllen gan y gymuned LGBTQ+ yn unig mo hwn; mae’n gylchgrawn i bawb. Yn aml, rhoddir gormod o bwys ar y ﬀaith bod busnes neu ddigwyddiad ac ati’n croesawu pobl LGBTQ+, ond weithiau gall hynny eu gwahanu oddi wrth eraill yn hytrach na’u cynnwys ymhlith eraill. Yr unig beth a geisir mewn gwirionedd yw cydraddoldeb a sicrwydd y bydd pawb yn teimlo’n ddiogel ac yn gartrefol. Fel y dywed y frenhines drag enwog, Dr Bev, ar dudalen 38: “Mae Caerdydd yn bair o gymunedau ar wahân i’n cymuned LGBTQ+ ni, a dylem fod yn dathlu pob un ohonynt; mae pob rhan o’n cymuned yn ein cyfoethogi.” Ac mae Nigel Owens hefyd yn taro’r hoelen ar ei phen ar dudalen 15: “Nid goddef pobl sy’n bwysig, ond eu derbyn. Mae cydraddoldeb yn golygu cydraddoldeb. Ni ddylech gael eich trin yn well nac yn waeth na phobl eraill. Ni ddylech fod yn ticio bocsys. Rydym am gael cymdeithas sy’n deg i bawb. Y nod yw cael lle da sy’n galluogi pobl i fod yn nhw eu hunain, gan achub ar bob cyﬂe i dynnu coes a chwerthin hefyd.” Diolch i bawb sydd wedi cyfrannu i’r rhifyn arbennig hwn. Tan y tro nesa’. #CaerdyddYnghyd, bob amser
Welcome to our Pride issue
LISA EVANS Follow us on Twitter @CardiffLifeMag Instagram @cardifflifemag
www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 3
M O ! N RO PE W O O S H OW N
Issue 238 / June 2021 COVER Illustration by local artist Olivia Daisy Coles, whose work can be found at www.oliviadaisycoles.etsy.com
9 BIG INTERVIEWS We’ve got a whopping seven ILLUSTR ATION BY LOCAL ARTIST OLIVIA COLES
one-to-one’s for you, including Russell T Davies, Nigel Owens and Stifyn Parri 31 PRIDE OF PLACE A celebration of some of the best LGBTQ+ friendly businesses, groups and collectives in the city
21 ARTS INTRO Mari Phillips centres her art on
people in Welsh history and mythology
22 WHAT’S ON Arts, shows and upcoming events, it’s
all going on in Cardiff
27 SHOPPING INTRO The UK’s first-ever queer
emporium comes to Cardiff
38 EDITOR’S CHOICE Our pick of local gifts to treat
your dad to on Father’s Day
FOOD & DRINK
41 FOOD NEWS Just a handful of tasty morsels for you
to chew on
43 FIVE MINUTES WITH… Hang Fire Southern
Kitchen, specialising in American BBQ
44 RESTAURANT REVIEW Smoke and fire at Bab
Haus Mex in Goodsheds, Barry
46 A LOOK BACK AT TAFWYL 2021 What a festival!
51 URBAN LEGEND The transformation of Atlantic
Wharf in Butetown
54 INSIDE STORY Four hot hues to try in your home
61 CARDIFF WORKS News and views and awesome
62 BIZ Q&A Behind the scenes at Howell’s School,
Llandaff, a filming hotspot
7 SPOTLIGHT Just a handful of feel-good stories 25 WYBURN AND WAYNE Our columnists talk about
their pride and joy
66 CARDIFF LIVES A local firefighter on tackling
inequality and stereotypes
Editor Lisa Evans firstname.lastname@example.org Managing editor Deri Robins email@example.com Senior art editor Andrew Richmond Graphic design Megan Allison Cover design Trevor Gilham Contributors Nathan Wyburn, Wayne Courtney, Jane Cook and Polly Angelova Advertising manager Mark George mark.george@ mediaclash.co.uk Account manager Claire Hawkins firstname.lastname@example.org Production/Distribution manager Sarah Kingston email@example.com Deputy production manager Kirstie Howe firstname.lastname@example.org Production designer Gemma Scrine email@example.com Chief executive Jane Ingham firstname.lastname@example.org Chief executive Greg Ingham email@example.com 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. 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: firstname.lastname@example.org
www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 5
The litter-clearing pirate boat is coming to Cardiff Bay this summer
A major new campaign, Treasure Your River, has launched to help reduce the huge amount of litter entering Cardiﬀ Bay and the ocean. Keep Wales Tidy and environmental charity Hubbub are calling for businesses, community groups, residents and organisations situated along the River Taﬀ and Cardiﬀ Bay to get involved. The campaign will run for the rest of the year and the programme of activities for this summer includes themed litter picks and scavenger hunts, sculpture installation and a litter-clearing pirate boat, as well as a treasure chest of curiosities found in the River Taﬀ. Treasure Your River aims to be the UK’s largest ever collaborative eﬀort to prevent and reduce the amount of litter in our waterways. For more: www.treasureyourriver.co.uk
POSTER GIRL Illustrator Niki Groom has brought her crowdfunded billboard campaign, All Under the Night Sky, to Cardiﬀ, featuring people holding placards at the Sarah Everard vigil. The campaign – made possible by media company Jack Arts, part of the BUILDHOLLYWOOD family – will run until 14 June, with the aim of sparking debate around women’s safety and the policing of protests. Niki’s print features protestors standing on Clapham Common holding placards and banners, the messages on which were crowd-sourced from social media. They include: ‘On my way home, I want to be free, not courageous’; ‘let us
live fear free’; ‘I can’t believe we still have to protest this sh*t’. “I hope it makes people think and starts conversations,” says Niki. “There is no quick ﬁx for the issues that women face. People from minority groups have been saying for years that these deep-rooted problems in our society are structural, and it’s true that to tackle them will take time and eﬀort from all people.” See Niki’s work at Churchill Way (opposite C.I.A.), Motorpoint Arena and Queen Street. The image is also available to purchase as a giclée art print, with donations going to charity. For more: www.missmagpiefashionspy.com
HAVE SOME PRIDE As June is Pride Month, there have been plenty of announcements in the city. You’ll find more throughout this issue of Cardiff Life, but here are a few stand-outs: the UK’s first Queer Emporium has opened on St Mary’s Street, bringing with it plenty of events and a ‘Queer Out to Help Out’ scheme at LGBTQ+ hospitality venues; at the time of writing, Pride Cymru’s 2021 annual event hasn’t been announced, but there’s every hope that will go ahead in some capacity (eyes peeled); there’ll be plenty of brilliant nights at the city’s LGBTQ+ bars, such as Mary’s and The Golden Cross; Glory Stores, run by Gays Who Wine, is opening in July; and Glitter Pride has been announced for 14 August.
© SIMON REGAN
The Cardiff billboard campaign keeps conversation going about Sarah Everard
BLOOMING GOOD CAUSE
Leading Cardiﬀ charity City Hospice has launched a new campaign to celebrate the lives of loved ones in a special way. Forever Flowers invites supporters to purchase a limited edition ﬂower, designed and The Forever Flowers will be crafted by the British Ironworks displayed at Cardiff Castle Centre, to remember loved ones. A unique and lasting tribute, they will be displayed at Cardiﬀ Castle from 24 July to 8 August and can then be kept forever. Purchasing a ﬂower will support the work of City Hospice, the only provider of home-based specialist palliative care in the capital. For more: www.cityhospice.org.uk
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As June is Pride Month, we celebrate by chatting to some incredible local people about their LGBTQ+ stories By Lisa Evans
Illustration by local artist Olivia Daisy Coles, whose work can be found at www.oliviadaisycoles.etsy.com
The remarkable people we’ve spoken to on the following pages include acclaimed screenwriter Russell T Davies; Nigel Owens MBE, rugby’s most celebrated referee; Lisa Power, who co-founded Stonewall with Sir Ian McKellen; and Brookside actor Stifyn Parri who had the first gay kiss on British TV RUSSELL T DAVIES
The acclaimed Welsh screenwriter (Doctor Who, Torchwood) on why it’s only this year, with his TV series, Channel 4’s It’s a Sin, he’s felt able to openly talk about the 1980s AIDS crisis. Would it be fair to describe It’s a Sin as your most personal project to date?
It probably is actually. I didn’t realise until I started writing it how exactly it fits my own life. I was 18 in 1981. I didn’t really have to reach for the cultural references, the songs, television shows, or the fashions, because I lived through them all. I mean, I think everything I write is very personal. I could equally say how close I am to Rose Tyler, and she’s flying through another galaxy [in Doctor Who] but yes, this was something I built up to writing for many years. How would you sum up what the series is about?
Well, it’s the story of the 1980s. It’s the coming-of-age story of five 18-yearold people who all converge in one flat in London, leaving home, growing up together. It’s the decade in which the shadow of a virus is falling across all of our lives. The five episodes cover 10 years 1981 to 1991. So, as we see these young kids grow up, come out, make friends, fall in love, find work, discover who they are, at the same time the virus gets closer and closer, hitting people in their social life and heading towards the flat itself. And it’s about how they cope with that and it’s how they survive that. It’s about how they celebrated each others’ lives in the face of such darkness. There hasn’t really been a drama of this scale exploring the British experience of the AIDS crisis until now. Why do you think that is?
Yes, I wanted to see the British perspective. It does exist, it’s there in films like Pride, very beautifully stated, and there’s this whole body of work that I’ve seen: The Inheritance and Angels in America are among the finest things that have been written, and along with The Normal Heart there’s a wonderful film called Holding The Man, and there’s London Spy which features a HIV diagnosis scene that is a phenomenal piece of work. So I was very aware of those pieces of work. But I very much wanted to find my own place
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alongside them, not repeating what they’ve done. And in some ways, the urge to be new is the least important thing. Because it’s stories like this that need restating again, and again. I’m very aware that younger generations are growing up not knowing anything about this period. And actually, let’s be honest, people who were there at the time don’t know anything about it either. And there are those who have happily forgotten such a bad time, and I don’t blame them for that. So it was a matter of me finding my place in there. It’s an awful subject, it’s a delicate subject, but it’s an honour to write about it. You’ve mentioned that it’s taken decades to build up to writing this project. Why did you decide 2021 was the time?
At the time it felt like it was just a normal life to live with this killer disease. But actually it takes you 20 years to realise that it is not normal. You have kids growing up now during the time of coronavirus, and to them this is normal, that face masks and social distancing is completely normal. It doesn’t make them blink. And it’s the same with AIDS in a way. I just grew up with it and it’s taken me a while to see the enormity of it. I’m glad I waited. Although in some ways, I do think it’s there in everything I’ve ever written.
How much was based on research? Was any research you did crucial to the story?
Yes, it is thoroughly researched. Of course, I spoke to the charities. I’m a patron of the George House Trust in Manchester, the North West’s biggest HIV and AIDS charity. They’ve got the logs of all the transcripts from their phonelines during the 1980s. So I put some of that on screen. I talked to loads of friends, I talked to lots of doctors as well. For the facts and for the anecdotal stuff too. But mainly it was an act of remembering, because I was actually there and I saw those people and knew those people and loved those people. It was time I got around to writing about them. One of the most devasting elements for victims of the AIDS crisis was the accompanying stigma and shame. At the same time the wider gay community suffered rife prejudice as a result of the virus too. How far do you think we’ve come since those times?
Things are a million times better. People said we were the love that dare not speak its name. And then along came a disease that dare not speak its name. Double calamity. Obviously, things have got better, radically better in my lifetime. In 1999, I wrote an out gay 15-year-old schoolboy, and he was as rare as a comet. Now, that’s not so rare. It’s really quite commonplace in most schools now (it’s still terrible if you’re in the closet, and I’m not saying all the problems are gone of course). But the prejudice lingers. You just ask people you know, ask a gay man, “do you know if it’s safe to be around someone with HIV if they’re sneezing?” And many people don’t know the answer to that. So there’s still a lot of ignorance. Nonetheless, it is a much, much better world than it used to be. I’ve noticed over the past five years the number of friends of mine who feel free to tell me their HIV status has increased by tenfold. It still used to be a secret, but in the past five years, I can notice people being much freer about talking about it. What are you working on next?
I’m script-editing a series written by Sir Lenny Henry! That’s a surprise to me, but when Lenny calls, you obey. It’s called Three Little Birds, for ITV. It’s based on his mother’s life, the story of three women travelling from Jamaica in 1957 to start a new life in Britain. It’s all written by Lenny, I just give him the occasional nudge, and explain the software to him. He’s a gorgeous man, and so much fun, it’s going to be wonderful. It’s a Sin is now showing on All4; www.channel4.com
*LGBTQ+ The acronym for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer. The plus represents other identities including pansexual, asexual and intersex. Some people use the Q to stand for ‘questioning’, meaning people who are figuring out their identity.
© CHANNEL 4
Russell says we live in a much, much better world than we used to
“It takes you 20 years to realise that it is not normal”
He had the first gay kiss on British television, and he’s produced some of Wales’ most prominent live events. Here Stifyn, who lives in St Fagans, tells us about how he helped lead a march of 18,000 people in protest of Clause 28, as well as his star-studded stories, and his newly released autobiography Out with It! / Allan â Fo!, which details his wild ride of a life. Tell us about your new book...
I was asked to write an autobiography, but, as I am bilingual, I wanted the book to be in English and Welsh. The publishers agreed, and it turns out that this is the first ever bilingual autobiography! My life has been pretty outrageous – from backstage gossip in Les Miserable in the West End, to the dramas on meeting royalty, and ending up on the news for taking part in the first ever gay kiss on British TV in Channel 4’s Brookside. You literally made history with that kiss…
My character [Christopher Duncan] was to give Gordon Collins a peck on the cheek, for his father to wince at. We shot episodes six weeks ahead of broadcast and there was something afoot. Clause 28 was beginning to get major publicity. It was a ridiculous, homophobic government law that prohibited local authorities from promoting homosexuality. This was leading to other monstrous situations whereby gay people were not offered the same rights, and were refused insurance and mortgages etc. Unless something was done about this clause, life would be catastrophic. There was a protest march organised in Manchester, and I had been persuaded to attend by Sir Ian McKellen. Who could say no to Sir Ian McKellen? The Brookside scriptwriters had timed the kiss to be broadcast at exactly the same time as the march; this resulted
Stifyn’s character in Brookside took part in the first ever gay kiss on British TV below: His newly released autobiography Out with It! / Allan â Fo!
“Don’t worry, who the hell is going to find a closet big enough for all of us?” in Brookside not only backing a gay historical fight, but also gaining immense publicity as the Nine o’ Clock News carried our storyline as the ‘and finally’ section. I walked in the frontline of the Clause 28 march alongside Sir Ian and Michael Cashman, followed by over 18,000 well-behaved protesters. Not one arrest was made that day. I then spoke to the crowds in Manchester’s Albert Square. I was part of history and felt like Evita. I’d written a speech which ended with, “Don’t worry, who the hell is going to find a closet big enough for all of us?”. The crowds went wild, and so did the media. However, I hadn’t actually come out at this point. I had not ‘admitted’ it (which is the word used back then, as if it were a sin) to anyone. As I stood there taking in the cheers, I suddenly thought, “You’d better go home and tell your mother you’re gay”. How is life going at the moment?
Since Brookside and then living in London working in the West End, I now live in St Fagans. For the last 20 years I have been running my company Mr Producer, which has been responsible for some of Wales’ most prestigious events, including the opening of Wales Millennium Centre, and the Ryder Cup opening concert, as well as working with Shirley Bassey, Catherine Zeta Jones, Prince Charles and Grace Jones – they are all in the book! Surprise us..
I once was offered a lot of money to talk to the press about meeting George Michael, more of that in the book! www.mrproducer.co.uk
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© RICHARD SWINGLER
Lisa lives in Cardiff Bay, which she describes as Disneyland for grownups
Cardiﬀ local Lisa co-founded Stonewall – arguably the most successful LGBTQ+ rights group in the world – with Sir Ian McKellen and others, was the ﬁrst openly LGBTQ+ person to speak at the United Nations, was hired by Russell T Davies to fact-check his Channel 4 series It’s a Sin, and was one of the ﬁrst volunteers for the Lesbian & Gay Switchboard. The astounding life moments she’s had seem never ending; we asked her to tell us about her favourites. “I’ve been a lesbian/gay/queer activist all my adult life because I’ve never understood why some people get so nasty about people who are diﬀerent from them, and that includes people being weird about women, diﬀerent skin colours and cultures too. “I came out in the 1970s when there was a lot more hostility and less acceptance, and from 1979 to 1994 I answered the phones on Gay Switchboard [the helpline featured in It’s a Sin] helping other people (and getting a fair bit of abuse). We operated 24 hours a day then, and the phones never stopped; so many people needed information or emotional support. That led to me getting involved in ﬁghting Section 28, the law that said lesbians and gay men had ‘pretend family relationships’ and stopped local authorities and schools from supporting us in any way. “That led to being part of the International Lesbian & Gay Association, who sent me to the United Nations in New York in 1991 to become the ﬁrst openly gay person to speak on our human rights there. That was terrifying; a lot of countries were blatantly hostile to us. Some still are. “I was then invited in 1988 to join Sir Ian McKellen, Michael Cashman and 11 others in creating Stonewall. We just wanted to create a professional lobby group that could persuade politicians of all parties that all we wanted was equality, and that we deserved it. That was a wild ride that really opened up my eyes. “All the way through this I was answering calls on Switchboard and dealing with the terrible impact of HIV – or AIDS as we called it then, when it was an always-fatal condition. At Switchboard, we ended every call for years with “and have you heard about AIDS?” because there was hardly any accurate information. So it’s not surprising that I ended up developing services about AIDS, ﬁrst with local authorities and eventually joining the Terrence Higgins Trust for 17 years, where I became their policy director. “I keep trying to retire, but it’s not happened yet. Now in Cardiﬀ
Campaigning in Trafalgar Square
“All we wanted was equality, and we deserved it” Lisa, bottom right, in her back garden with Ian McKellen and Michael Cashman as Stonewall was being founded
– in the Bay, where I’ve been for over 15 years, it’s like Disneyland for grownups in the summer, with the ferris wheel and the festivals and the Inner Bay – I’m supporting the development of Fast Track Cardiﬀ & Vale, a collaborative project between Health Board, Council, University and community groups, chaired by Pride Cymru. The aim is to end new transmissions of HIV by 2030. I’m also a Trustee of Queer Britain, the project to build a UK museum of LGBTQ+ history, and I help create History Month events for Pride Cymru. “Now in my 60s, I’m a historical artefact myself. Things have changed so much since I came out nearly 50 years ago. I wrote an oral history of the London Gay Liberation Front – the wittiest and bravest bunch of people I ever knew – titled No Bath But Plenty of Bubbles. It’s on Kindle, with all proceeds going to Switchboard because they’re still going and, sadly, are still much-needed to ﬁght bigotry and support LGBTQ+ people.” @thatlisapower
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BIG INTERVIEWS KELLY AND ZOEY ALLEN
Wives Kelly and Zoey run an award-winning blog, Our Transitional Life, which they began after Zoey came out as transgender, as a way to help others find positive stories to hold onto. Here, the Cardiffbased couple, who are also the founders of statement jewellery business KelZo, open up about their life as a transgender family, complete with two very accepting, loving children. Zoey, you were married to Kelly for a decade before ‘coming out’ as transgender, what made you wait?
I didn’t truly figure myself out until around 2016. For years my feelings had been suppressed, and I continued in the same way until Kelly and I finally spoke about it. I felt wrong, broken, like I might lose so much, including Kelly and the kids, and at that point it felt better to hide it than face it. But I faced it, and I began social transitioning from January 2019, leading on to hormonal transitioning. We have always been a pretty much ‘all or nothing’ family, and when we decide to do something, we tend to go in all guns blazing. So after a lot of talking, we just took the bull by the horns and went full throttle into it. Could you tell us how you felt?
Terrified, excited, relieved and empowered all at once. I was glad the truth was out between Kelly and I, and excited for the future, but very scared for the hate and discrimination I knew I would soon be facing. How does it feel now to express yourself the way you want?
Being me is a challenge every day still. I still see the ‘man’ I used to be, and I feel the surgery I need to confront that is still a very long way off. I have been fundraising since January 2021 and am not even a third the way there yet. However, there are times when I look at myself and see the woman I could be, and it makes me feel warm inside. Being able to express myself through clothing and makeup is very empowering and just feels right for who I am.
Kelly and Zoey created an award-winning blog as a way to help others find positive and uplifting stories to hold onto
Kelly, how did you feel when Zoey told you the news?
At first, I was shocked. When the penny finally dropped, it was a lot to process. But in hindsight, it was the start of something incredibly beautiful. I kept reading the only positive story I could find online. I read it every day in the first month. I married her for her heart and soul, and that would never change. You said it wasn’t just Zoey that transitioned, it was the whole family, including your children…
We’ve all evolved together. Zoey always describes it as ‘our transition’; she allows us into every aspect, and we support her 100 per cent. We are going on this journey together, and it’s a privilege to be involved. When we told our kids, George and Molly, they reacted with, “As long as she’s happy”. They’ve never been upset or confused; if anything, they helped me get past some worries. I told George I was worried I’d miss their ‘daddy’, and his response was, “Well he’s still there, inside of Zoey”. And he was right. We can learn a lot from children, and we’re so proud our children are open-minded, accepting, and loving. What reactions do you receive?
We’re quite visible online, and we get a lot of support. But out and about is a different story. Zoey can experience verbal abuse, and the
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“We are going on this journey together, and it’s a privilege to be involved” other day someone barged into her at the park. It can be very scary for her to be out in a world that still has a long way to come. On the plus side, so many people are incredibly kind and welcoming when we’re out. It’s a shame not everyone is the same. How inclusive do you think Cardiff is as a city? Honestly, we’ve experienced a mixture of responses to our little family. Yes, there’s a big LGBTQ+ scene, but when it comes to trans folk, there is a long way to go in terms of acceptance and kindness. We’ve had staff members in restaurants and shops comment and laugh at us, yet in other places we’re welcomed with open arms. www.ourtransitionallife.com
© HANNAH TIMM
“It’s not about tolerance, it’s acceptance, really, that’s key” Welshman Nigel is one of the most respected figures in world rugby, and the first openly gay man to officiate at the highest level of the game. In the past he said he felt tortured with accepting his sexuality, admitted he tried to kill himself and revealed how he asked a doctor about chemical castration. In the early years, he felt that he was faced with the decision to hide it and continue with refereeing, or come out and risk his career. But it turned out that he actually received a lot of support, especially from the players and the Welsh Rugby Union. Here he tells us why he tries to see the lighter side of things. “A huge part of rugby is the camaraderie – it’s the leg-pulling. There are things that are totally unacceptable – of course there are – you should stand up and call them out, we all should, but also, have a smile on your face and be able to take a joke. If you can make the joke with another person, make sure you’re able to take the joke yourself. I do think that what does hinder a lot of equality and diversity in society, and in sport and in the workplace, is too many people look for a reason to be offended when there’s often really nothing to be offended about. “Things are different today to how they were 30 years ago. It’s a massive, massive difference. What you do have today is an acceptance, a tolerance in society – people respecting people who may be different to who they are – and that is the same in sport. There’s a lot of work to be done, and society is certainly a much more tolerant place to be. But it’s not about tolerance, it’s acceptance, really, that’s key. “The key thing going forward is we all need to buy into an understanding that equality means equality. You shouldn’t be treated any better, you shouldn’t be treated any worse. You shouldn’t be ticking boxes. We want a society that is fair for everybody. What you want is to have a good place for people to be themselves, and never forget to have a joke and a laugh as well.” @Nigelrefowens
© HANNAH TIMM
NIGEL OWENS MBE
Nigel hosting our very own Cardiff Life Awards in 2019
www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 15
© JEFF GILBERT
“I wanted girls and boys to know that there is nothing wrong with being LGBTQ+”
Beth says that being in the public eye and receiving positive messages from viewers is what motivates her to keep campaigning for LGBTQ+ rights
Beth, who lives in Penarth, played hockey for Wales for 15 years and became the first woman to commentate on football for BBC Wales. She is now sports reporter for ITV Wales. Being in the public eye, what sort of feedback do you receive?
I get messages thanking me for being open, saying I’ve helped them in some way; that’s what motivates me to keep campaigning for LGBTQ+ rights. In my job interview with ITV, I told them that I wanted girls and boys to know that there is nothing wrong with being LGBTQ+ and hopefully seeing me will help them understand themselves. At the age of 38, I’m still coming out; it’s not a one-time thing. Our world is defaulted to heterosexual norms, so I keep having to come out, whether that’s to new people at work or when speaking to the bank about a mortgage. I was about 15 when I realised that I was a lesbian but we didn’t have any education about being LGBTQ+, due to Section 28, so the word was often thrown around to offend and it made it really hard to come out to anyone. I played hockey and this is where I learnt that being gay was totally normal because I saw women having happy and normal relations. You said you were grateful for your mum’s reaction especially...
At the age of 22 I came out to my mum on the phone, and she said, “For God’s sake, Bethan, I’ve known for years! Right, see you later for dinner.” I went back home that evening expecting at least a little probing from Mum, but there was nothing; no questioning or weird atmosphere. It was normal, and I didn’t like it. I had kept this ‘secret’ for over seven years. Lying had become the norm. Making up pretend friends and events had become second nature. I felt guilty,
16 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk
and this was my chance to explain my actions. I firmly asked her why she wouldn’t talk about it, and her response was simple and loving, “Because it doesn’t matter, and I love you just the same”. Looking back, I realise how lucky I was to have such an amazing response. However, subsequently, I have met many men and women whose coming out experiences have been harrowing. They still haunt me to this day. You’re a big supporter of Stonewall; why is it important that the world should ‘accept people without exception’ as is Stonewall’s message?
It’s 2021 and people are still killing themselves and being killed because they are LGBTQ+; that is a travesty. There are centuries of social construction and gender norms woven into what we consider as ‘normal’, and we HAVE to work hard together to ensure that people are accepted. Our trans family in particular are having a really tough time and I hope we can rally together to ensure that their basic human rights are upheld. @bethfisher04
“This recognition makes all my worries just disappear in a cloud of glitter” Cardiﬀ Central Library. Alas, this has not been achieved, but cogs are turning and live indoor events are returning. During lockdown I worked directly with Pride Cymru, Vale of Glamorgan Libraries, Awen Libraries, and LGBTQYMRU for lockdown online storytimes.
Sab, also known as drag artist Aida H Dee, founded Drag Queen Story Hour UK, a Cardiﬀ-based organisation which oﬀers interactive storytelling for kids by drag performers. Why do you think it’s important for children to see queer representation like this?
It’s super important! I sat in front of a picture of Alan Turing for four years straight during my computer lessons at secondary school, and not a single person thought it would be relevant to highlight that this lifesaving man was queer. For nearly half a decade of my life after school I hated myself. I hated my gayness. If I had only been given a role model at a young age to look up to, I’d have grown up a happier person, and maybe a better person. It’s really important to teach young people to love people’s diﬀerences. I am autistic and ADHD and I don’t want to be ‘just accepted’ for it, I want it to be a quality people understand, respect, and adore.
You’ve been nominated for the upcoming British LGBT Awards – won by the likes of Elton John and Little Mix in the past – and have featured on Forbes, how does that feel?
You may notice that crying is like a career for me; on both occasions I cried. When you receive the amount of hate I do, you doubt yourself. This type of recognition makes all that worry just disappear in a cloud of glitter. Tell us about the new book...
My recent children’s book, The Three Goats United, is about goats who want to cross a bridge. One of them, Eddy, is bright pink and he gets harassed by a wolf for being diﬀerent. The three goats stand up to the wolf, and the pink goat poops on the wolf ’s head too. It’s available on the Drag Queen Story Hour UK shop. ■ www.dragqueenstoryhour.co.uk
How do kids react?
Kids love it. It really is a pantomime in a library, with lots of jokes, and storytelling, but also important messages. Many children ask me, “Are you a boy, or girl?” I love that question because it’s a step towards them asking themselves about their own gender expression. Being understood at an early age could really beneﬁt their mental health in the future. What other questions do they ask you?
One question I was asked made me cry myself to sleep. A young person came out as bisexual to me after a storytime. They asked me when they should come out to their parents. I want to tell the world to come out, but uneducated, unloving parents exist, and sometimes you won’t be in a safe position to come out. I said, “If you’re ready, and if you’re safe”. I cried that night, scared that their life may be turned upside down. What about adults’ responses?
It’s not pretty; I get death threats and online abuse on a regular basis. I have even had a picture of a gun sent to me with the person telling me where I live. It’s all words and no action though, and I am still yet to see someone tell this to my face, let alone on a social media account that isn’t anonymous. However, there are a lot of positive responses too. A mother once told me her adopted daughter had gone through trauma and had night terrors. The one thing that calmed her to sleep were my storytime videos. That made me cry. Where do you perform in Cardiff?
It was all set on the eve of Covid for me to be reading stories with
Sab says although Drag Queen Story Hour is like a pantomime in a library, it also offers important messages to kids
www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 17
The menopause – guidance for employers and employees Sarah Alford of BERRY SMITH LAWYERS explains...
enopausal women are the fastest growing group in the workforce and therefore it is crucial that employers ensure they are aware of their legal obligations and what they can do to support their staff. Research demonstrates that many women dealing with the transition experienced difficulties in reducing their working hours, experienced problems with the working environment and many have stated that they are not comfortable disclosing their difficulties to their managers and colleagues. In addition, some women felt as though their career had been affected, with some women leaving the workplace altogether. The Law An employer has a duty to protect the health and wellbeing of its workforce and must not behave in a way that may undermine the implied duty of trust and confidence. What actions should my employer be taking? In order to support their workforce and
potentially avoid future claims, employers could: • Provide training for staff and particularly managers to ensure they understand how the menopause can affect working women and what adjustments can be implemented to support them; • Ensure that guidance about how to deal with the menopause is freely available in the workplace; • Invest in an employee assistance programme; • Review and/or amend their sickness absence policies to ensure that women experiencing the transition do not encounter any detriments; • Implement flexible working policies, or take a flexible approach to requests for a break or an early finish. If sleep is disturbed, later start times may be helpful; • Carry out risk assessments to ensure that the workplace environment is not exacerbating a woman’s symptoms. For example, ensure that employees have access to fans, clean and comfortable toilets, etc;
• Provide access to cold drinking water; • Review uniforms to ensure that employees have the option to wear layers, remove neckties or jackets, etc. An employer could also consider changing the uniforms fabrics to a more thermally comfortable fabric. With almost 8 out of 10 women of menopausal age in work in the UK, supporting women with menopausal symptoms is something all good employers should consider. In addition, employees should not be afraid to raise the issue if they feel their performance in the workplace is suffering. n
If you would like more information about the issues raised in this article, please feel free to contact our team on 029 20345511 or email@example.com.
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3rd June - 26th June 2021 View images on our website www.albanygallery.com 74b Albany Road, Cardiff, CF24 3RS | T: 029 2048 7158 | E: email@example.com Gallery open: Mon-Wed by appointment only, Thurs-Sat 10am - 5pm, Sun 11am - 4pm
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NEW STUDIO, NOW OPEN!
THE ARTS S N A P S H O T S O F C A R D I F F ’ S C U LT U R A L L I F E
EXPRESS YOURSELF Roath-based illustrator Mari Phillips centres her art on LGBTQ+ people in Welsh history and mythology. “I started Mythsntits because I was inspired by myths which told the stories of LGBTQ+ gods and goddesses,” she says. “These deities are so prevalent in Greek and Roman mythology and they can educate people in knowing that queer people have always existed. In Welsh mythology, these people have been written out but I am keen to uncover and celebrate queerness from our ancient history. “Mythsntits is a safe space to enjoy colourful, meaningful, cheeky art. I’m also always looking out for independent businesses in Wales who support women and the LGBTQ+ community too.” Pictured are two of Mari’s prints – left: Becky With The Nice Dress; right: Rebercca Riots But Make it Gucci. Mari sells her prints and merch online and in shops around Wales and Bristol. In Cardiﬀ, you’ll ﬁnd her work at Cardiﬀ Creative Shop in Queens Arcade; www.mythsntits.com
www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 21
The glittering hit musical Priscilla, Queen of the Desert is coming to the New Theatre
WHAT’S ON From 5 June onwards
PLAYS / SHOWS / PERFORMANCES Until 12 June
THE MERTHYR STIGMATIST Sherman Theatre and Theatre Uncut will present the world premiere of The Merthyr Stigmatist in a fully-staged digital production recorded in the Sherman Theatre Studio. The play, written by Wales-based playwright Lisa Parry, will be available to watch online and on demand. Sherman Theatre and Theatre Uncut; www.shermantheatre.co.uk; www.theatreuncut.com
Until 13 June
HOOF! Welsh theatre company Theatr Iolo will transform outdoor spaces this spring with their travelling theatre and the return of the family show HOOF! Starring three tap-dancing deer, the show has been created in collaboration with Kitsch & Sync, a company most well known for their walk-about performances at festivals. It will take place at locations including Chapter, Cardiﬀ; Llanrumney Hall, Cardiﬀ; MEMO Arts Centre, Barry, and Kitchener Primary School, in Cardiﬀ. www.theatriolo.com
22 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk
#LIVEFROMTHEDORA This series oﬀers an outstanding line-up, performed from the Dora Stoutzker Hall. Coming up, Roderick Williams, one of the foremost baritones in the UK, performs with the Royal Welsh College’s String Ensemble in Residence The Albion Quartet. Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama; www.rwcmd.ac.uk
NEW THEATRE PROGRAMME New Theatre in Cardiﬀ has just announced its upcoming 2021/2022 programme. Tickets are now on sale for a mixture of uplifting musicals, intense drama, brilliant live music and fabulous dance that will have you, your friends and family on their feet in applause. Priscilla Queen of the Desert is coming in September, followed by Al Stewart's Greatest Hits, and The Billy Joel Soundbook, both in October, and The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde coming in November. New Theatre; www.newtheatrecardiﬀ.co.uk
Always check Covid-19 restrictions and instructions with venues before your visit
ART/ PHOTOGRAPHY/ EXHIBITIONS Until 5 September
ARTES MUNDI 9 Artes Mundi is the key internationally focused ﬂagship visual arts organisation in Wales generating unique opportunities for individuals and local communities to engage creatively with the urgent issues of our time in ways which resonate with us all. The ninth edition of the critically acclaimed Artes Mundi exhibition and associated prize is presented across Cardiﬀ in partnership with the National Museum Cardiﬀ, Chapter and g39. www.artesmundi.org
5 – 6 June
GRANGETOWN ZOO A two-day celebration of everything arty and creative in Grangetown. Windows and gated alleyways of Grangetown bill be turned into life-size zoo enclosures. Residents are invited to get involved by decorating their own windows, gardens or alleys or taking part in the free art workshops. If you plan to create an enclosure and would like it to be included in the zoo map, get in touch with them. Grangetown; www.artgrangetown.wixsite.com
FESTIVALS Until 20 June
THE RICHARD BURTON COMPANY’S NEW WRITING FESTIVAL Online for the ﬁrst time, four new plays from some of the UK’s best playwrights and directors will premiere at this festival, performed by actors of the Royal Welsh College’s in-house theatre company. Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama; www.rwcmd.ac.uk
SAUSAGE AND CIDER FEST The world-famous food festival featuring all your favourite sausage ﬂavours and ciders from around the UK will be returning to Cardiﬀ, make sure you register for tickets. Portland House; www.sausageandciderfest.co.uk
17 – 20 June
THE FILM & FOOD FEST 2021 A ﬁrst of its kind open-air ﬁlm festival, is visiting 15 UK cities this summer, including Cardiﬀ. Taking place over four days in each location, the festival will show everything from indie ﬁlms to live comedy, and there’ll be street food galore. Bute Park; www.ﬁlmandfoodfest.com
© POLLY THOMAS left: Vegan cookie specialists Vookie Co will be at The Queer Emporium on St Mary’s Street below: Artes Mundi is currently being presented across Cardiff
A new virtual conference, seeking to inspire entrepreneurs, start-ups and scale-ups with powerful insights, and to link them with key advisers and partners. www.entreconf.com
24 July, 31 July, 7 August
BRITISH AND IRISH LIONS TOUR All three test matches will be shown live at Depot Cardiff. Depot; www.depotcardiff.com
ONE FOR LATER IN THE YEAR 20 – 15 September
PRISCILLA, QUEEN OF THE DESERT THE MUSICAL Miles Western, Nick Hayes and Edwin Ray will star in the muchloved glittering hit musical Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. It marks Jason Donovan’s first time as a producer, having performed in the cast of the original West End production and two subsequent UK tours. The musical, based on the Oscar-winning film Priscilla, has more sparkle than ever before, featuring a dazzling array of stunning costumes, fabulous feathers and a non-stop parade of dance-floor classics including It’s Raining Men, I Will Survive and I Love The Nightlife. Get ready for a heart-warming story of selfdiscovery, sassiness and acceptance. New Theatre Cardiff; www.newtheatrecardiff.co.uk
DEPOT IN THE CASTLE This event has been rescheduled, and organisers have also added a new act, with Tom Grennan confirmed to support Kaiser Chiefs. Cardiff Castle; www.depotcardiff.com
GLITTER PRIDE Glitter Cymru, a Cardiff-based global community group dedicated to LGBTQ+ ethnic minority individuals, will host Glitter Pride online. Expect: dating and companionship in a post-Covid world; show and tell; self-care strategies; and a segment on working with allies. www.glittercymru.org.uk
SHANGRI-LA The open-air dance festival will
take place at Cardiff Castle in their biggest event to date. Cardiff Castle; @shangagram
7 – 12 September
VIRTUAL WALKING FESTIVAL Outdooractive, Europe’s largest digital outdoor tourism platform, launches its ‘Virtual Walking Festival 2021, working with Walking Festivals, including the Vale of Glamorgan Walking Festival, to offer a selection of self-guided walks and support local businesses. During the Vale of Glamorgan Walking Festival, you can enjoy a spectacular variety of walks for all levels, travelling in good company and guided by experienced walk leaders. www.outdooractive.com
2 and 3 October
INSIDE OUT FESTIVAL
Be enveloped by sights and sounds that will stimulate all of your senses. Inside Out brings the best of the outside world, in to the festival. Welcome. To. Utopia. Bute Park; www.insideoutcardiff.co.uk
OTHER All of June
THE QUEER EMPORIUM The UK’s first ever queer emporium has opened in Cardiff for Pride Month this June on St Mary’s Street. The pop-up will feature around 15 LGBT+ makers and independent businesses, and, in addition to the opening of the shop, The Queer Emporium will also be hosting a series of events in the Royal Arcade, including live comedy nights and workshops as well as supporting the city’s hospitality sector with a ‘Queer Out to Help Out’ scheme at LGBTQ+ hospitality venues. See page 27 for more. @thequeeremporium
26 – 27 June
CARDIFF TRIATHLON Located in the iconic Cardiff Bay, this triathlon is one of the most unforgettable city races on the calendar with the event village positioned in front of the Wales Millennium Centre. Roald Dahl Plass, www.alwaysaimhighevents.com
THE HUNDRED The Hundred is a new 100-ball cricket competition, fusing epic entertainment with high energy sporting action. Eight new men’s and women’s teams have been created for the competition and they will play on an equal footing on the same day. Jonny Bairstow, Meg Lanning, Kieron Pollard and Sarah Taylor are just four of the international cricket stars on their way. The Hundred is family-friendly, inclusive and fun. It will appeal as much to regular cricket watchers as those watching it for the first time. There will also be entertainment and live music off the field. Sophia Gardens; www.thehundred.com n
GLITZIEST DIARY DATE OF THE YEAR 30 September
CARDIFF LIFE AWARDS Nominations are currently open for the Cardiff Life Awards (deadline for entry is June 10!). Whether you're a first time entrant, previous winner, tiniest of new companies or the largest of corporates, absolutely anyone can win! Nominations can be made easily online using the form, and you never know, you might even win. City Hall; www.cardifflifeawards.co.uk
www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 23
NEVER MISS AN ISSUE 17 ISSUES FOR
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IT’S ALL RELATIVE
ALL LIGHT NOW
SHINY AND NEW
RENOVATE, GOOD TIMES, COME ON!
A STRIKING VICTORIAN REVAMP HAS BECOME THE HEAD-TURNER OF PENARTH
A NEW BOOK ON CARDIFF’S CREATIVE COMMUNITY
ELLA DAISH’S #ENDPERIODPLASTIC CAMPAIGN
GAYS WHO WINE
A TIPPLES CLUB WITH A DIFFERENCE
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CELEBRATING THE 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF CHAPTER ARTS, THE HEARTBEAT OF CREATIVITY IN CARDIFF
Get yours for £30 for UK subscriptions (17 issues)
DO YOU READ ME?
Angharad Mair on BAFTA Cymru
WE’RE GOING HOUSEPLANT CRAZY
A ROOTING FOR YOU Small versions
Welcoming start-ups to the city
A TRIBUTE TO A CARDIFF LEGEND
A NOVEL IDEA
INTERIOR REVAMPS FOR THE UPCOMING SEASON
Cardiff Shooters’ molten metal photography Local authors who are crushing it
THE CHURCH VILLAGE COLLECTIVE IS TAKING SOUTH WALES’ INDIE SCENE BY STORM
ISSUE 235 / APRIL 2021 / £3
A FRESH TAKE
Christmas gifts aplenty
BUMPER PROPERTY SECTION INSIDE
BAND TOGETHER ISSUE 235 / APRIL 2021 / ARTBEAT
D I LY
NO TIME LIKE THE PRESENT
CHAPTER AND VERSE
DARK ‘N‘ DREAMY KITCHENS HAVE TAKEN OVER PART TWO OF OUR FAMILY BUSINESS FOCUS
THE INCREDIBLE WORK OF CARDIFF’S MATICO, THE DRIVING FORCE BEHIND EDUCATION IN GHANA
CELEBRATING THE BEST IN THE CITY, PENARTH & THE VALE
IC ED TO
AFTER A LUCKY ROLL OF THE DICE, CHANCE & COUNTERS RETURNS TO THE CITY
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ISSUE 230 / NEW YEAR 2021 / STYLE FOR THE SEASON
MEET THE MAKER
ELIZA ELIZA’S TABOO PRINTS ARE HIGHLIGHTING DEEPER ISSUES
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CELEBRATING THE BEST IN THE CITY, PENARTH & THE VALE
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CHAPT AND VER
WYBURN & WAYNE 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
e are so thrilled that Cardiﬀ Life has created this special LGBTQ+ edition of the mag. We always say, being LGBTQ+, speciﬁcally gay men, is a tiny part of who we are. We are brothers, sons, uncles, friends; however, being part of the community, and the challenges we’ve faced, has certainly shaped the people we are today. We’re also strong on making our stamp anywhere we can. We don’t only want to attend LGBTQ+ events and drink in the gay bars, we want to be welcomed and accepted everywhere. That’s
what equality is. The need for such venues and Pride events, is undeniably still there – a safe space for someone unsure or learning about their sexuality, a place for people to be themselves if they aren’t quite ready for that in the outer world. We, however, try to smash through those boundaries, showing people we can be who we are, loud and proud, in the sparkliest clothing wherever we damn want. Nathan creates powerful messages through his artwork, too. A few examples include the Gareth Thomas HIV awareness artwork, created with fake blood applied to the canvas using just his ﬁngerprints, which now
“Our drag show is being made into a movie by Keeping Faith star Eve Myles”
The annual Dragged To Church event; RIGHT: Nathan’s Gareth Thomas HIV awareness artwork
hangs pride of place in Cardiﬀ’s Royal Inﬁrmary sexual health clinic. Also portraits of Elliot Page stamped using his name thousands of times on the transgender ﬂag, and Harvey Milk, using milk, obviously. Wayne is part of a new LGBTQ+ support group within the NHS, recently founded to help patients and staﬀ within the community feel safe and equal within the trust. It’s kickstarted really well and Wayne’s super proud to be part of it. By far our proudest moment however is our annual Christmas drag show, Dragged To Church, where we hold a drag show at St Andrew’s URC church in Roath. It’s a merging of two worlds and Hosting at Pride Cymru
an absolutely outrageous event about humanity and unity. It’s being made into a movie by Keeping Faith star Eve Myles, which is just absolutely bonkers. To anyone reading this, who may be unsure, struggling or just curious… BE LOUD, be proud, be you! This life isn’t a dress rehearsal, so you best make it worth it. Come and have a drink with us if you’re lonely; send us a message, and come and party! We are both here for you. About our columnists: Nathan Wyburn is a pop culture artist who uses nontraditional mediums such as Marmite, beans, soil and fake tan; and Wayne Courtney is a healthcare support worker at University Hospital of Wales. They are also Radio Cardiﬀ DJs with their own show, and basically know everything and everyone in the city. Follow them on social: @wyburnandwayne / @wyburnwayne
www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 25
SHOPPING LIVE WELL, BUY BETTER
LET ME BE PERFECTLY QUEER The UK’s ﬁrst ever queer emporium has opened in Cardiﬀ for Pride Month. Running for the duration of June, standing proudly on St Mary’s Street, the pop-up will feature around 15 LGBT+ makers and independent businesses. Among the products on sale will be rainbow coﬀees, artisan cakes, clothes, books, wines and candles. “Having launched my own independent business during the pandemic making candles, I realised how many other LGBTQ+ businesses are out there,” says Yan White, founder of The Queer Emporium. “There is a real desire to support the queer community and enough innovative LGBTQ+ businesses to create a dedicated space for them to thrive. “The Queer Emporium will oﬀer a new way for the LGBTQ+ community and allies to shop queer for Pride Month and support local charities and causes through featured products from each seller. This is an exciting and innovative project that pulls together so many people for Pride Month after such a tough year. It’s the ﬁrst enterprise in the UK to bring together so many local LGBTQ+ led artisan businesses in one space, which I’m very proud of.” In addition to the opening of the shop, The Queer Emporium will also be hosting a series of events in the Royal Arcade, including live comedy nights and workshops as well as supporting the city’s hospitality sector with a ‘Queer Out to Help Out’ scheme at LGBTQ+ hospitality venues. @thequeeremporium www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 27
TYRE+LIME LIMITED EDITION CANDLE, £24.99 Once the handcrafted candle has burnt, it can be converted to a plant pot. From NanoCast Studio, The Queer Emporium, St Mary’s Street; @thequeeremporium
BREITLING SUPER CHRONOMAT, £6,750 We’ve got a lot of time for this beauty. Maybe this one’s a self-gift with that price tag though... From Breitling Boutique, St David’s, Cardiﬀ; www.breitling.com
RAD DAD Ideas to make the dads feel extra special on Father’s Day, or any other day for that matter…
KINGS EVOLUTION EAU DE TOILETTE, £44.99 A primal scent with hints of exotic spice and jungle in bloom. From Illustrate, Morgan Arcade, Cardiﬀ; www.illustrate.co.uk
POST-WORKOUT SHOWER STEAMER, £7 Just break a bit oﬀ, place it on the shower ﬂoor and inhale the energising aromatherapy oils. From Miss Patisserie, Cardiﬀ; www.miss-patisserie.com
KEYRING, £2.50 For cool dads only. From Banter Cards, Goodsheds, Barry; www.bantercards.com DUSTY’S DIY PIZZA KIT GIFT CARD, £12 The gift voucher entitles the holder to one pizza kit to replicate a Dusty’s Margherita at home. From Dusty’s, Cardiﬀ; www.dustyspizza.co.uk
T SHIRT, £20 Dave Mills, the former DJ to Cardiﬀ’s Cool House has launched a new clothing business featuring music-themed clothing. From In the Music, Cardiﬀ; www.inthemusicuk.com
28 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk
ED’S CHOICE THE BEER BUCKET LIST BOOK, £9.99 A travel-sized guide to over 150 of the best beer experiences on the planet. From Nest, Heol-Y-Deri, Rhiwbina; www.nestcardiﬀ.co.uk
CLOTHING AND ACCESSORIES, FROM £15 He’ll be the most dapper dad around donning this multi-brand ‘ﬁt. From Unit 17 Menswear, Goodsheds, Barry; @unit17_menswear
FRESHLY ROASTED COFFEE, FROM £8.50 Fresh, fun coﬀee made in a smallbatch Welsh roastery. From Hard Lines Coﬀee, St Canna Court, Cardiﬀ; www.hard-lines.co.uk
VEGAN SOAP BAR, £5.50 Help support Prostate Cancer Awareness one wash at a time, with proﬁt donations to Prostate Cymru. From The Goodwash Company, Goodsheds, Barry; www.goodwash.co.uk
FOURFACE: SHAVE, FROM £63.99 This fantastic foursome has everything a clean-shaven man needs to look the part. From Mesoa for men, Cardiﬀ; www.mesoa.men
EXOTIC WINDER, £535 Luxurious and stylish, this single watch winder can be set between 300 and 1,200 turns per day. From Laings, St David's, Cardiﬀ; www.laingsuk.com
REFILLABLE GROWLER, £24.99 A reﬁllable container bubbling with freshly poured beer from Craft Republic’s direct draw taps. From Craft Republic, Goodsheds, Barry; www.wearecraftrepublic.co.uk
www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 29
© TOM DAVIES, @TOMAESH ON INSTAGR AM
Cardiff Castle, shot by Tom Davies
PRIDE OF PLACE A celebration of some of the best LGBTQ+ friendly businesses, groups and collectives in the city By Lisa Evans
www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 31
ibrant and diverse, Cardiﬀ is Wales’ LGBTQ+ hub and is positively bustling with awesome ventures, epic events, lifechanging activism and UK ﬁrsts. There are tons of queer-owned businesses and goings-on, and we’ve dived into an array here, including a gay-friendly B&B which hosts trans dinner parties; the world’s largest queer ﬁlm festival; and eye-opening groups making extraordinary waves.
it’s always fun at the Pride Cymru parade to see what secret project is unveiled for the ﬂoats.” www.maryscardiﬀ.co.uk
THE GOODWASH COMPANY
Here are a handful of local queer-friendly businesses, which are for everyone…
This luxury wash and lifestyle brand, based in Goodsheds Barry, has a huge gay following. Part of the Goodwash mission is to encourage people to ‘be who you are, with no excuses’, and they are a huge advocate of gay rights. “Authenticity is a core value here,” says founder Mandy Powell. “Be you, always be you, is a phrase we use frequently. All our products are ethical, and made by people that we admire. We love the fact everyone is diﬀerent, and for people to be their authentic selves you must create a culture where authenticity is valued and equality is respected.” www.goodwash.co.uk
THE QUEER EMPORIUM
The UK’s ﬁrst queer emporium has launched in Cardiﬀ to coincide with Pride Month. It’s open throughout June, on St Mary’s Street, and features 15 LGBT+ makers and independent businesses. Among them will be Gays Who Wine, oﬀering eclectic vinos; quirky jewellery specialists Candy Goblins; and Primavera Therapy, with products for mild, body and soul. The Queer Emporium will also be hosting a series of events in the Royal Arcade, including comedy nights and workshops. See more on page 22 and 27. @thequeeremporium
Mary’s, on St Mary’s Street, is one of Cardiﬀ’s premier cabaret venues, hosting local, national and worldwide drag shows and entertainment. It’s run by Cardiﬀ ‘scene legend’ Gordon Tovey and the Mary’s family; Gordon tells us more. “Mary’s oﬀers you a home from home, a new friend, a place for you, your friends and family. It’s a quiet space when needed, but it’s also a party, a celebration and a place to gather. It’s a stage to become a star, from karaoke nights to talent shows like Drag Idol UK. But Mary’s wouldn’t be Mary’s without our fellow scene venues like The Golden Cross, Pulse, The Kings, Mainstage and The Eagle. We all try to work together as much as possible and
Tŷ Rosa, on Clive Street, calls itself Cardiﬀ’s only exclusive (gayfriendly) boutique bed and breakfast. Paul and Stuart Bolter-Shone, the married couple who run the business, tell us more. “We showcased the B&B as openly LGBTQ+ as we wanted somewhere safe for people to stay and relax. Our openness about this attracts people in; we have all walks of life staying with us, especially trans when it’s their ﬁrst time out in public. We have even hosted trans dinner evenings so that like-minded people can get together. Our guests have told us they’ve often not felt welcome in other hotels; we see people as people and not of an orientation.” www.tyrosa.com
David Le Masurier and his husband Lee run this independent bakery in Victoria Park. David tells us more. “I feel enormous pride in having carved out my business in a predominantly masculine-dominated artisan bakery scene. Setting out, it was important to me that my business wasn’t pigeonholed or held back by my personality. Basically, my business is inclusive to anyone who eats and obeys our simple house rule: ‘don’t be a d*ck’. Now we are more established, it makes me question if I should be more visible as a gay business owner and push that visibility through the business. I intend the ‘brand’ to be interpreted by the customer in the way they want to see
“We need to hear from people who experience the world diﬀerently”
THE ABCS OF LGBTQ+ A glossary of terms you’ll find throughout this feature... CIS / CISGENDER – people whose gender identity matches the sex they were assigned at birth FOLX – an alternative to ‘folks’, used especially to signal the inclusion of groups that are commonly marginalised NON-BINARY – an umbrella term for people who understand their gender in a way that goes beyond identifying as either a man or a woman TIN – trans, intersex and non-binary WOMXN – an alternative spelling of ‘woman’, inclusive of trans and non-binary women It’s always a good time at Mary’s on St Mary’s Street
32 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk
THE ELEPHANTS EAR
© HEATHER BIRNIE PHOTOGR APHY
This tropical plant shop in Clearwater Way, Lakeside, was started by Nathan Vaughan who has had a passion for all things green since his mum allowed him a small section of the garden to maintain. “We support a number of LGBTQ+ staff members that offer a friendly and inclusive space,” he says. “Cardiff is a friendly and inclusive city, with a strong sense of community in the gay scene, but also between small businesses. We have met other LGBTQ+ business owners and we hope to work with them soon, one project being Glory Stores, run by Gays Who Wine.” www.theelephantsear.com
Mandy at The Goodwash Company
David and Lee at Pettigrew Bakeries
Nathan at home in his urban jungle that is The Elephants Ear
Shaun Houcke (left) founded Gays Who Wine
GAYS WHO WINE
This wine club has worked on a pop-up model around Cardiff but will have a new home at Roath’s Glory Stores from July. See more on page 41. “We provide an inclusive place for people across the whole LGBTQ+ ally community,” says Shaun Houke, owner. “Drinking our wine doesn’t make you gay, but 10 percent of our profits do go to LGBTQ+ charities. I started the business because meeting new people is difficult, especially for those of us in the LGBTQ+ community. We are not anti-scene, we love a gay bar, but they’re rarely a place where you can relax with good conversation, wine and a bite to eat. That’s where Gays Who Wine comes in.” www.gayswhowine.com
The Pink Hut at Cardiff Bay Barrage, shot by Pete Bushell
Locals share their favourite LGBTQ+ friendly spots… “There are so many great things in the city, like the Cardiff Lions [Wales' first gay inclusive rugby team] and Cardiff Dragons FC [Wales' only LGBTQ+ football club]. Also, we must mention Hey Mary, the queer drag disco, hosted monthly at Mary’s!” Gordon Tovey at Mary’s
“I'm biased since they've been instrumental in our founding and set up, but the 100 per cent autistic-owned Aubergine Café and Events CIC Based in Canton is brilliant. It’s run by a largely queer team and is designed to be an accessible space for neurodivergent folx. The newly launched Glitter Sisters are brilliant too; they run social events, including a book club, for 'queer ethnic minority womxn' in Cardiff. We should mention the wonderful NanoCast Studio, who we share a market stall with at Cardiff’s Indie Superstore. Their profits go directly to Rainbow Railroad, which helps LGBTQ+ folx, living in countries where they are persecuted, flee to safety.” A member of Paned o Gê’s community
“We can be your gladiators, your friends, and your shoulders to cry on” 34 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk
© PETE BUSHELL, @PEDRO_ FARDD ON INSTAGR AM
“SpokesPerson CIC Bike Workshop are doing great things for increasing LGBTQ+ visibility in the cycling community, as well as promoting diversity in the sport. Glitter Cymru are a brilliant meet-up and support group for the LGBTQ+ ethnic minority community, and Trans Aid Cymru is an incredible mutual aid group. I also highly recommend The Barber Room in The Castle Emporium as an inclusive, gender-neutral space.” Rosie Smith at Shelflife
PRIDE it, regardless of who they identify as. I came out when I was 17, at a time when Queer as Folk was just airing on Channel 4 and I had not seen anything like it. I felt like the first generation where attitudes were really changing and homophobia was being challenged. I remember one of the scariest boys at school walking past me and just saying ‘alright, Dave?’ one day. I expected an attack that never came, looking back it was actually a nod of respect. I am proud to be out in all aspects of my life, married, business owner, healthy and happy. Those were concepts I grew up believing gay people couldn’t have.” www.pettigrew-bakeries.co.uk
GROUPS AND COMMUNITIES Just a few awesome collectives…
LGBTQYMRU (a mash-up of the words LGBTQ and Cymru) was founded in the first lockdown as a response to regional Pride events having to cancel. It turned into a Wales-wide virtual Pride – obtaining charitable status – and an online magazine. Bleddyn Harris, editor, tells us more. So tell us a bit about your virtual Pride festival, the first of its kind in Wales…
We hosted a weekend of events that saw over 30,000 viewers. We had phenomenal panel discussions with the likes of Glitter Cymru, UK Black Pride and the Terrence Higgins Trust, where we discussed queer people’s experiences with faith, HIV, drag, and racism. We raised thousands in sponsorship, and the profit was donated back into LGBTQ+ organisations. What are the plans for 2021?
You may have heard that we did another first-ever: we launched a bilingual online magazine. What started as an extension of the way we were able to connect, celebrate, and support the LGBTQ+ communities of Wales has bloomed into something larger and more meaningful than we had ever imagined. So, 2021 is all about continuing to provide that platform. What message would you give to our ‘closeted’ readers?
You will not have to do it alone. There are so many support services across Wales dedicated to helping LGBTQ+ people. Honestly now, if you start telling people about your sexual orientation or gender identity, you will feel a massive weight lifted from your shoulders. We have a shared understanding of what it means to be queer, and that means we can be your gladiators, your friends, and your shoulders to cry on. When you’re ready, we’re here, and can’t wait to meet you. www.lgbtqymru.wales
in the Welsh Government to ensure that any LGBTQ+ policies are properly informed by individuals who have lived experiences; provided educational opportunities to key organisations in Wales, such as Pride Cymru and Stonewall Cymru; and we hosted Wales’ first-ever BAME Pride in 2019. What’s coming up?
We are extremely excited to host our very own Glitter Pride on 14 August! It will be hosted online; expect: dating and companionship in a post-Covid world; show and tell; self-care strategies; and working with allies. www.glittercymru.org.uk
TALK TO COCO
Coco, from Talk to Coco, is a Cardiff-born, non-binary mental health advocate and writer who has created a safe space on social media for people across the world to have someone to talk to. After being diagnosed with a condition, which has taken its toll both physically and mentally, Coco found a welcoming community online when speaking out about it. Coco now uses lived experiences to help others, has been published in books and magazines, and has worked with companies such as the BBC, UN Women, Gurlstalk, and Wagamama. “Through my work I’m trying to dismantle the ‘not normal’ stereotype attached to being queer, as well as disability and mental health,” says Coco. “I use always-personal experiences as a creative, multi-artist, mental health activist, lesbian, and non-binary human of colour, to deal with the stigmas of the world, and I use social media as a lens for my creativeness, saving lives at the same time. It’s vital to see people like myself around the world thriving and not feeling alone, and it’s so rewarding for me to have people tell me I inspire them to keep going. I knew I had to make a change, and that’s how Talk to Coco came about. “It became a platform for myself and others within all my communities, and around the world, to have a safe haven, a secure space where they didn’t feel judged and could see someone in the reallife flesh experiencing just what they do. Honesty and transparency make you vulnerable, be honest and transparent anyway – my final famous words to you.” @talktococo Coco has created a safe space for people across the world
This Cardiff-based global community group is dedicated to LGBTQ+ ethnic minority individuals. Their role is to provide social support to their members – from international students to asylum seekers and refugees. Here we speak to Dr Numair Masud, treasurer. Why was it founded initially?
Glitter Cymru emerged from hearing the frustrations of LGBTQ+ ethnic minority individuals who felt invisible in the wider white majority LGBTQ+ community. Our founder, Vish Gaikwad, started our community group and since then it has grown to become a lasting presence in Wales. What important work has been achieved?
We have: provided an in-person social platform for our members to establish connections; created a virtual platform in response to Covid; provided support for asylum seekers and refugees to ensure that they received a smooth integration into Wales; engaged with policy makers
www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 35
PRIDE TRANS AID CYMRU
This is a mainly Cardiff-based collective of people that came together in the summer of 2020 to help TIN people through mutual aid support. The project is run by TIN people for TIN people. Member Rudy H tells us more. The group came about in lockdown, what’s the story?
We were growing disillusioned with the way trans people were being treated by the government and the media, and felt that they were being ignored or used to stir up culture wars in Westminster. While the media was obsessing over whether or not we belong in public bathrooms, the TIN people in our community were dealing with homelessness, poverty, lack of access to public services and isolation due to the pandemic. We decided to come together to try and ensure that TIN people had what they needed to survive the pandemic and beyond. We started out redistributing money through PayPal, and the support we had was huge from day one. Allies seemed glad to have an opportunity to do something tangible to help. We’ve provided financial grants – to support with things ranging from housing, healthcare and immigration status, to meal shares, transport, and social spaces via zoom. We hope to host in-person events once it is safe to do so. www.transaid.cymru
BOOKS AND ENTERTAINMENT
The radical bookshops and queer film platforms dedicated to championing LGBTQ+ material…
The Iris Prize LGBTQ+ Film Festival celebrates queer film all year round, including a BAFTA-qualifying festival in Cardiff each October. Now in its 15th year, it’s home to the world’s largest short film prize. Festival director Berwyn Rowlands tells us more.
The Iris Prize is a celebration of queer film
“We love being a part of this community of changemakers” 36 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk
What’s the background of the Iris Prize?
Iris was started to share the best of the best LGBTQ+ film from around the world here in Cardiff; I saw something missing here in Wales. We’re the only festival that gives the winning director £30,000 plus support and access to world-class facilities so they can make their next short film. There isn’t much funding out there for short films, let alone LGBTQ+ ones. So, this is a really coveted award. Why is it important to you to showcase these films specifically?
Maybe one day, LGBTQ+ films won’t need their own platform, but right now they need a space of their own to thrive. When people come to Iris, they know they are going to see themselves represented on screen, and that is very special. We’re currently working with Film4, who are showing our Best British short films on All 4 for a whole year. We’ve also recently been awarded funding from the National Lottery Community Fund for our second community filmmaking project. We’ll be working with groups across Wales to teach filmmaking skills, culminating in making a short film together. How does being based in Cardiff benefit the work you do?
Cardiff is the perfect home for Iris; we’re really proud to get to show off this diverse and friendly city to people from all over the world. We realised very early that guests visiting for the first time were always super impressed not just about Iris but the host city. www.irisprize.org
SHELFLIFE BOOKS AND ZINES
This is a not-for-profit radical bookshop on Womanby Street, working with independent publishers and DIY zine-makers. Here we chat with founder Rosie Smith. Why did you want to start a radical bookshop?
The need for community-focused, radical spaces has become so
Locals share their favourite LGBTQ+ friendly spots…
“Most of us are poor and disabled, so we don’t tend to go out too much. When we do, though, we love Killing Moon. It’s not a strictly LGBTQ+ event but it’s a great environment. Trans Pride Cardiff was an awesome event that we’re hoping to see pop up again too. In the summer, we all hang out at the Big Queer Picnic; it’s a great chilled out space for queer folks, where local queer artists sing, dance and perform poetry. It runs on the same weekend as Pride Cymru and is a great alternative if you don’t enjoy the overcrowded festival vibe.” Rudy H at Trans Aid Cymru
“I live in the Bay, so a favourite spot of mine is Sunflower&I in Mount Stuart Square; they make immense afternoon teas and their opera evenings are quite something to behold. I also enjoy the Iris Film Festival, the Festival of Voice at the WMC, Depot at the Castle, and I was part of the team that helped bring the now annual Dragged to Church event together; I am excited to see that on the big screen now that the movie is being made [by Keeping Faith star Eve Myles].” Rob Keetch, AKA Dr Bev, drag legend “You can always find me in Mary’s and The Golden Cross. There’s entertainment from the likes of Miss Kitty, Amber Dextrous, Dr Bev and
Mary Golds plus some of the newer drag acts around the city like Victoria Scone and Polly Amorous. Shout out, too, to the safe spaces that you always clock some of the LGBTQ+ friendship groups in – places like The Botanist, Pitch, and Mocka Lounge. My good friends, and a fabulous gay couple, Dave and Tom own the North Star pub and it’s great. I also love receiving and buying flowers from The Flower Chapter, which is owned by Jacob and Paul. I look forward to Inside Out Festival every year, too, it’s Wales’ biggest music festival and you have a stage filled with local, national and worldwide talent. It’s a festival that speaks to a lot of people through music.” Jay Page, BDM of The Botanist Cardiff
www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 37
© CROWN COPYRIGHT VISIT WALES (2021)
A previous Pride Cymru event, Wales’ largest annual celebration of equality and diversity
important. It began as a pop-up in my friend’s beer shop (Pop’n’Hops on Whitchurch Road), then the pandemic hit. I moved the shop online and, when things started to open back up, I was lucky enough to be able to move into the current premises in The Castle Emporium. Why is it essential to you to share queer-friendly literature?
It’s important that radical literature, which ampliﬁes marginalised groups, is put front and centre. It’s vital that queer young people can ﬁnd books that reﬂect who they are, and where the LGBTQ+ community and allies can ﬁnd information about the history, the culture and the absolute joy of queer lives. Why are you championing under-represented voices?
Our world is built for your average white, cis, able-bodied, middleclass man. The institutional structures that deﬁne our existence – our schools, our universities, our workplaces – are inherently racist, homophobic, ableist and sexist. We need to hear from people who experience the world diﬀerently, the voices that are continuously silenced and oppressed. www.shelﬂifebookshop.com
PANED O GÊ
This is a queer bookshop – currently online, based in Cardiﬀ. Our interviewee at Paned would like to remain anonymous. How did Paned o Gê come about?
After a visit to Category is Books, the ﬁercely independent queer bookshop in Glasgow, it seemed disheartening that such a space wasn’t present at that time in Cardiﬀ. The original plan was to rent a commercial property and open in spring 2020, but the lockdown measures meant that wasn’t viable. Instead, we launched online in May last year with our online book club, selling only one book (Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi), and that was the plan for the near future: to ﬂog the titles selected for the club. We’ve heard you’d like to create a ‘hub’ for LGBTQ+ people?
Ideally, yes! That was our original long-term objective, however, we decided recently to change it, after it was suggested that we should start a mobile library. Why is it important to you to share queer literature?
Because it is often relegated to a single shelf or section. There are so many incredible LGBTQ+ titles being published, and having a dedicated space to promoting, celebrating and selling these books proves there is a demand for them. www.paned-o-ge.wales
Hansh, part of S4C, is a go-to place for online Welsh language content for 18–25 year olds. They post a variety of entertainment and current aﬀairs and they champion new talent within Wales, oﬀering a platform for everyone to get their voices heard. Guto Rhun at S4C tells us more. Tell us what Hansh does for the LGBTQ+ community…
Since it was launched in 2017, LGBTQ+ voices have always played a major role our content. Recently, we published a series on YouTube where two members of the LGBTQ+ community from diﬀerent generations oﬀered their perspective on what it’s like to live their lives today in comparison to what it was like years ago. We also held a short ﬁlm competition during LGBT History Month in partnership with Cardiﬀ’s Iris Prize. ■ @hanshs4c
38 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk
Rosie at Shelflife in The Castle Emporium
How diverse and supportive is our city really?
“We’ve been pleasantly surprised by how many folks in Cardiff are willing to support TIN people. There are also other strong social justice activists here in Cardiff, and we love being a part of this community of changemakers. However, there is still an undercurrent of danger for us in Cardiff, as TERF (Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminist) groups are incredibly active here, and their members are influential in Welsh political and charitable spheres. It is one of the reasons why we rarely give our names or show our faces publicly as members of Trans Aid Cymru.” Rudy H at Trans Aid Cymru “I’ve become more acutely aware that the ‘scene’ primarily accommodates people who are white, cisgender, and male, which is symptomatic of a wider societal issue around trans people and people of colour. It should never be the case that people have to go off and find their own spaces to exist. We haven’t come all this way just to become the bullies.” Bleddyn Harris at LGBTQYMRU “Cardiff certainly helps lead the way in its inclusiveness but, being honest, it could do more. Cardiff is a melting pot of communities, not just our LGBTQ+ one, and we should be celebrating all of them. Historically, the docks brought communities from all over the world and our entire backbone has been built on that. That needs to be shouted about; each individual section of our community enriches us.” Rob Keetch, AKA Dr Bev, drag legend “Cardiff has been my gay home for many years. I’ve seen many venues come and go. It’s such a cosmopolitan city, which is great. If you look closely, you’ll realise so many ‘non-scene’ venues are safe spaces for so many of the LGBTQ+ community. Does Cardiff have much to learn? Yes. Does every city around the world? Yes. But I think a lot of people are working on making the world a little bit more inclusive.” Jay Page, BDM of The Botanist Cardiff “Cardiff is a good place. I have been drawn to the positivity, kindness, quirkiness and general balance of this place. We aren’t boastful, in fact the city often talks itself down, but I see pockets of true inspiration, quality, innovation and potential to rival other cities. Cardiff is our oyster and it will thrive from diversity over the coming years.” David Le Masurier at Pettigrew Bakeries
“Cardiff is our oyster and it will thrive from diversity over the coming years”
Love is all you need
Locals share their favourite LGBTQ+ friendly spots… “I think Cardiff has really woken up on all levels, and is a great city to be a part of, and the gay community spirit is an absolute joy. I salute Wyburn and Wayne [our Cardiff Life columnists and Radio Cardiff presenters] who have brought such joy with their Dragged to Church events, bringing two great communities together to raise funds to save the roof of St Andrew’s Church. Respect. Also, I had the honour of walking at the front of the Cardiff Pride march a few years back carrying the heavy ballooned letter P as the first letter in ‘Pride’. That experience will stay with me forever! Stifyn Parri, BAFTA Cymru consultant
“Twenty years ago, the LGBTQ+ clubs were kind of underground (some literally were) and the excitement of secretly sneaking off to Exit or Club X was just so much fun. Also, Hamptons in Penarth [owned by husbands Andy and Peter] is a lovely place to buy gifts. One of my favourite brands ever is The Goodwash Company, in Barry, which is a huge advocate for LGBTQ+ rights.” Beth Fisher, sports reporter “We've worked with David Le Masurier since we've started; he is an inspirational gay man who owns Pettigrew Bakeries, which has been making
our burger buns for years. There’s also Let Them See Cake, which is run by a gay couple. And we love Penylan Pantry; Mel – who’s in a same-sex relationship – is very welcoming to all parts of the community. We are also close with Mandy from The Goodwash Company. Mandy’s got a great story, she’s an ex-professional international hockey player turned entrepreneur. Also, 2019 was the first time that Barry had a Pride event; I've never seen such an outpouring of support. It showed me how welcoming and accepting the town is. I really hope it returns.” Shauna Guinn, Hang Fire Southern Kitchen
www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 39
CARDIFF PROPERTY AWARDS
THE CARDIFF PROPERTY AWARDS ARE BACK 26 NOVEMBER 2021
NOW: Sponsorships available, please get in touch with email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information 28 JUNE: Launch Event, register at cardiffpropertyawards.co.uk 28 JUNE: Nominations open 14 OCTOBER: Grand Reveal Day 19 NOVEMBER: Official Preview in Cardiff Life 26 NOVEMBER: Cardiff Property Awards
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FOOD & DRINK SNAPSHOTS OF CARDIFF’S FOOD SCENE
© HEATHER BIRNIE PHOTOGRAPHY
A handful of juicy food news morsels for you to chew on
Ridiculously Rich has announced the opening of their newest café in Cardiﬀ Bay. Alana Spencer, winner of the BBC’s The Apprentice in 2016, opened the second of her Ridiculously Rich by the Sea cafés in Mermaid Quay on 15 May. The menu includes indulgences such as cookie dough pizzas, and vegan happy chicken and rueben sandwiches. “It has been a dream of mine to open a store in Cardiﬀ Bay for a long time,” says Alana. “I am incredibly excited that that dream is becoming a reality.” www.ridiculousluyrichbyalana.co.uk
GET YOUR FILL
Gays Who Wine, the pop-up wine club which offers wine tastings, food pairings and cracking company all in judgement-free settings around Cardiff, now has a permanent home. Glory Stores, a provisions store and dining room, is a new Roath-based venture set up by Gays Who Wine’s owner Shaun Houcke (pictured above), due to open 1 July on Upper Kincraig Street. The wine will continue to take centre stage, and, as for the food, it will be sourced from artisan producers, with a focus on supporting industry newcomers. There will be essential food provisions, and some luxuries – our eye is on the truffle crisps – for all your pantry needs. Then there’s the dining room, where private bookings are on offer currently, and where the seasonal menu will be ever changing. www.glory-stores.com
Jane doesn’t go anywhere without her reusable bottle
World Reﬁll Day (16 June) is a global awareness day which highlights the importance of reﬁll and reuse in the ﬁght against plastic pollution. Here, local foodie PR guru Jane Cook celebrates being part of the #ReﬁllRevolution in Cardiﬀ. “The campaign is the work of environmental organisation City to Sea. In Cardiﬀ, they have local champions leading community schemes (Reﬁll Cardiﬀ and Reﬁll Mermaid Quay) to raise awareness. There are zero-waste stores dotted all over the city; the Reﬁll app (reﬁll.org.uk) lists over 1,800 locations in Cardiﬀ where people can reuse and reﬁll everything from coﬀee cups and water bottles, to wine, toiletries, cleaning products and more. Among the locations are Ripple on Albany Road, Nook restaurant in Canton, Kemi’s Café in Pontcanna, and the Waterloo Tea chain of teahouses, which will open a sixth site on Whitchurch Road this summer.” #WorldReﬁllDay; @reﬁllwales; www.reﬁll.org.uk
OUT OUT Street Food Teras, a new venture from Wales Millennium Centre (WMC) and Street Food Warehouse, has launched in Cardiﬀ Bay (next to WMC). The new foodie venture will host some of Cardiﬀ’s best independent traders in an all-new outdoor seating space. The Teras will also feature a container bar oﬀering up the tastiest tipples to accompany your street food bites. “It’s a fantastic new hotspot for foodies to indulge their senses,” says Marc Simcox, head of food and beverage at WMC. “ As spring turns to summer and crowds return to the bay, we look forward to giving visitors a warm and safe Welsh welcome in this exciting new development.” www.wmc.org.uk
The Apprentice winner says it’s been a dream to open a shop in Cardiff Bay
© K AREN MASSEY
A rotating street food line-up means no two visits will be the same
New independent eatery The Grand Bar and Kitchen has opened on Westgate Street in Cardiﬀ. Owned by a consortia of Cardiﬀ business people, who wanted to keep it as true to its Cardiﬀ roots as possible, it’s in a venue that oozes features that span centuries, and its menu has a modern Welsh twist. “The Grand Hotel was built in 1886, and has huge Cardiﬀ links, which has inspired the decoration and menu at the Grand Bar and Kitchen,” says Rob Toogood, director. “On one wall there is a three-metre peacock, a nod to the peacocks that used to live in Cardiﬀ Castle. The Grand has many of the original features from the hotel, and to reﬂect this, the Grand archway is a history wall with pictures of the past at the Grand Hotel.” www.grandbarandkitchen.com
www.mediaclash.co.uk I CARDIFF LIFE I 41
THE FUTURE IS UNWRITTEN
THINKERS The Conference for Entrepreneurs, 1 July KEYNOTE: Chris Anderson (TED Conference) OUR SPONSORS, CURRENTLY:
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FOOD & DRINK
“We came out live on Saturday Kitchen to 14 million people by accident” Tell us about ‘coming out’ to a live audience… In the history of our business together, we’ve never really talked about it being couple owned. We’re obviously very ‘out’ in our own lives, but when we set up the business, we didn’t really want that to be the focus. When we did come out, it was live on Saturday Kitchen to 14 million people by accident. That was June last year, on the day that we were supposed to have got married [paused due to Covid]. We weren’t social distancing, so we had to explain why, and we said, actually, we are a couple. We had a really overwhelmingly positive reception for that.
ALL FIRED UP Hang Fire Southern Kitchen, specialising in American BBQ, started as a pop-up model, then moved to street food, and now it’s a restaurant in Barry specialising in good, honest, southern hospitality. It’s owned by partners of 21 years Samantha Evans and Shauna Guinn. Shauna tells us more…
In what way? I think the fact that Sam and I are gay owners of the business, that kind of flows through the restaurant. We’ve got a very diverse customer base. It’s a real thrill for me running a space where everybody can come and feel safe. We have a lot of trans, gay and bisexual customers, and it’s really lovely for them to know that they can come and eat out in restaurants where that’s not going to be an issue. And I’m very proud of that. But also I think that’s reflected in just how diverse our staff team is; all different languages, all different sexualities and all in different types of relationships. And I think that’s a really important part of it; you walk through the door and you can automatically tell that homophobic or bad behaviour is just not going to be tolerated. Take us back to the start of your business… We did a Ted Talk on this if anyone wants to check it out, but in 2012, we quit our nine-tofives to go on an epic road trip
across America to learn about the secrets of American BBQ (and to meet Dolly Parton). We had a shared love for music, food, and gatherings, and we used to have BBQs in our back garden, so American BBQ fitted within that triangle of food, music and people. So that was the moment of epiphany for a business we could start together. American BBQ is nothing like British barbecue; the principles of it are taking huge cuts of meat and putting them in a smoker or a pit for a really long time at a really low temperature. Hang Fire has some huge achievements to its name, can you tell us about them? We won an award, the BBC Food & Farming Awards, and received the highest number of nominations in 15 years. This was when our lives really changed. Then, two years after we started our little venture, we were approached by a publisher about writing a cookbook. Sam suggested making it a book myth-busting the image of American BBQ – explaining the background, telling the stories, showing people how they can get to where we are now – which was unheard of, because it’s a kind of secretive industry, but we wanted to blow it open. Now we’re in our beloved seaside town of Barry in the Grade-II Pumphouse with the biggest handmade chimney in Wales. More on what followed can be found in the three series of our own BBC One cook show, Sam and Shauna’s Big Cookout!
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BAB HAUS MEX
This Mexican street food vendor has a background as rich as its delectable dishes. Lisa Evans went to try it out
ust a quick scene-setter: light pouring into a suntrap al fresco courtyard, a colourful Mexican feast laid out across a picnic table, scents of chipotle, garlic and lime wafting in the wind, and the palpable excitement of post-lockdown dining turned up to 100. We can imagine it would have felt even more animated if the other tables around us had been full, but we were kindly invited to Bab Haus Mex, at Goodsheds, the day before it re-opened to the public, post pandemic. So it was just me and my feasting companion alone in a street food square, not having to worry about the nacho cheese accidentally spilling down our chins, or if our emphatic exhalations of foodie pleasure were too intense. We can guarantee they were fairly loud though, because Bab Haus has hit upon a deeply flavoursome blend that is pretty mind blowing; it’s eyes-roll-back good,
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and focuses on a unique interpretation of authentic Mexican food, with Middle Eastern influences, and an LA street food twist. Their signature dish, birria queso tacos, was, my friend said, the best thing he’s ever tried in his life; it was a meltingly moreish mix of ox cheek, beef brisket and short rib, smoked for 10 hours over oak, cherry and apple wood. The meats are then braised for eight more hours in a richly spiced chilli broth until falling off the bone, before being pulled and stuffed between two grilled cheese corn tortilla tacos, loaded with salsa roja, sour cream, onions, coriander and tajin lime seasoning. The showstopper soft tacos stuffed with barbacoaspiced cauliflower, smoked aubergine, crumbled feta, plump pomegranate seeds and pickled red chilli were my favourites; a dish full of wake-me-up heat and hidden depths that stopped the clock. We also managed to squeeze in the fresh and fragrant
lupès ceviche – lime juice-cured sea bream with avocado, tomatoes, jalapeño, cucumber and red onion, served with fried tortilla chips for scooping – as well as lime, manchego and chipotle corn ‘ribs’ (corn on the cob quartered lengthways and then deep fried) and generously loaded cheesy nachos. Leyli Homayoonfar founded Bab Haus with the ‘immense support and dedication’ of her business partner Becci Goad, as well as her twin sisters, friends and family. “I learnt to cook at home,” says Leyli. “We were lucky to be brought up in a culturally mixed household where food was central to family life (my dad being from Iran and my mum being Welsh). I began working in restaurants in Cardiff; my first job was in Stefanos in Pontcanna and then I progressed to working under Tommy Heaney for the Bar 44 group before moving to London to pursue my career even further, training in Michelin-starred restaurants, then on to teach young chefs for Jamie Oliver at Fifteen. This led me to running Jamie Oliver’s cookery schools before moving over to Waitrose cookery school. This is where I met Becci, and our food partnership began.” When Leyli came home to Cardiff (managing to convince Becci to come with her), she was ready to take all that knowledge and experience from London and give it her own stamp. Before leaving London, she started doing supper clubs in 2017 under the name Leyli Joon & Co; this laid the foundations for her local business – the plan being to start a food catering venture for supper clubs, weddings and events, which saw a fully booked calendar for 2020, which sadly the pandemic shot to pieces. Thankfully, they had already started Bab Haus and they were able to quickly adapt the model to ensure Bab Haus’s survival. Their HQ has been open since 2018 on an industrial estate in Caerphilly, which was well hidden until they decided, due to the pandemic, to put their efforts into turning it into a pop-up shop/takeaway on the weekends. They are planning on making this a permanent venture alongside their main site in Goodsheds. Also, due to Covid restrictions, they set up Heat at Home taco kits, which became so popular they have decided to expand the offering, and they’re due to launch their bottled sauces in the autumn. Up until recently they had a residency at Sticky Fingers in Cardiff, too, where they were welcomed into the thriving street food scene in the city; and they hope to return later in the year. Long story short, Bab Haus is growing. More and more people are discovering their explosively delicious fusion of flavours – smoky and rich, with a whack of heat – all lovingly prepared for hours on end, served up with electrifying salsas, sauces and seasonings. They’re elevating street food to an art, all driven by a ferocious creativity, and to miss it would be ill-advised, to say the least. n
“It’s a dish full of wakeme-up heat and hidden depths”
DINING DETAILS Bab Haus Mex, Goodsheds, Hood Road, Barry; www.babhausmex.co.uk Food Authentic Mexican food, with Middle Eastern influences and an LA street food twist Veggie options Yes, lots Prices From £3.50 to £11 Drinks The most popular option is their frozen margaritas. There’s also Mexican beers and nostalgic soft drinks such as Lilt and Fanta Lemon
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AC ROSS C A R D I FF, O N E SH I N D I G AT A T I M E
On 15 May, the 15th Tafwyl was held, as an audience of 500 people enjoyed the festival at Cardiﬀ Castle. The popular Welsh language arts and culture festival was chosen as one of the Welsh Government's Covid test event series, welcoming parties of up to six people to enjoy live music and street food. As well as the live audience, the festival was watched by a global audience on AM's digital platform, with people tuning in from Argentina, Italy, Germany and Canada. There were 17 artists performing across two stages, curated by Clwb Ifor Bach, including Ani Glass, Gwilym and Geraint Jarman. Other highlights included the launch of the ﬁrst LGBTQ+ podcast in Welsh, 'Esgusodwch ﬁ?', a panel talk on body conﬁdence organised by Mari Gwenllïan HIWTI, Kitsch'n Sync
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and a panel discussion about identity and Welshness led by Seren Jones. “After an extremely challenging time for all, it was wonderful to see people enjoying a bit of normality again, and celebrating the glimmer of hope for the events industry and the arts,” says Manon Rees-O’Brien, chief executive of Menter Caerdydd, a charity that promotes the social use of the Welsh language in Cardiﬀ and which organises Tafwyl. “Thanks go to the Welsh Government for choosing our festival as one of their pilot events. All of this would not have been possible without our amazing funders, sponsors, partners and contributors, so a big thank you to them and everyone who joined us.” All of the performances are available on demand via AM's digital platform, www.amam.cymru. More on Tafwyl can be found at www.tafwyl.org Photos by Dafydd Owen | ffotonant
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We couldn’t have said it better ourselves! Real-life testimonials from happy customers of The Tap End
ow long can we talk about bathrooms? Well how long is a roll of toilet paper, and then some! But, for a change, we thought we would share from our clients’ perspectives instead… and we couldn’t have said it better ourselves! Here are a few testimonials along with before and after pictures from completed projects by The Tap End… “From the outset the team at The Tap End have been utterly professional. Our design brief was rather challenging but our design expert Daniella’s imaginative ideas certainly exceeded our expectations. Our installation team were a pleasure to welcome into our home, always cheery and respectful. The products used and standard of workmanship is excellent. What impressed us most though was the efficiency from all the team when dealing with a small issue which arose with our wooden panelling. The aftercare service along with the design and installation with The Tap End is excellent and we would heartily recommend them as a company. We are delighted with the final result!” Mr & Mrs Powell, Church Village
48 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk
“FROM THE OUTSET THE TEAM AT THE TAP END HAVE BEEN UTTERLY PROFESSIONALY.”
“I came across the Tap End website purely by chance and I’m so glad I did. After looking at their designs across various social media platforms I made an appointment to go down to discuss the refit of our ensuite. I cannot recommend them enough - they were great from the very first meeting - was really pleased with the designs they came up with and the finished ensuite was exactly like the designs. The quality of the materials used is excellent and the local company they recommended to fit the ensuite were great - would highly recommend them and will definitely use them again when it comes to redesigning our main bathroom.” Mr & Mrs Coleman, Pontypridd
“My wife and I were totally blown away with the end to end experience provided by The Tap End in Pontyclun. The requirements capturing talks with Zoe initially, then Justine Bullock were friendly and always professional. Justine’s subsequent design was thorough, very clever and met our brief totally; supported by excellent software that provided 3D imagery incorporating actual product dimensions and pictures, which I can now say actually looked like the finished product…WOW. The products suggested, chosen and ordered by The Tap End were all high-end specifications and delivered just in time for fitting. The recommended fitter was fab – very friendly, approachable and a thorough, hard-working and tidy craftsman. We are extremely satisfied with the whole experience with The Tap End and the price was actually quite reasonable for the quality! We highly recommend you both and will come to you again in the (hopefully not too distant) future.” Mr & Mrs Lloyd, Pontyclun Before
“We were so lucky to find the Tap End, and in particular Daniella who helped us with our new wet room; faultless service from start to finish, also by the recommended installers. After visiting numerous bathroom/ tile show rooms, we struck lucky here with a fully designed scheme that worked to the inch. We would certainly recommend The Tap End and have already recommended to some friends. Thanks again.” Mr & Mrs Clarke, Barry
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 49
PROPERTY P L A C E S T O L I V E , W O R K A N D P L AY
ABOVE: An artist impression of Atlantic Wharf; this image: an artist impression of the new Cardiff Arena
An update on the transformation of Atlantic Wharf, Cardiff xxxxx
A public consultation has been launched around Cardiﬀ Council’s plans for the transformation of Atlantic Wharf, Butetown, Cardiﬀ. Prior to the submission of the planning application in autumn, residents and businesses are being invited to share their views on the proposal which will create a new visitor destination. Anchored by a new public square and arena, Atlantic Wharf is set to become a destination address in Cardiﬀ with a new cultural centre, retail and leisure facilities, hotels, multi-storey car parking and new homes. Last year, the Council appointed a consortium of Robertson as developer and Live Nation and Oak View Group as operator, and now the public’s views are being sought on the arena proposals and the wider Atlantic Wharf masterplan. “The Cabinet approved the masterplan for Atlantic Wharf late last year and we are now ready to commence the public consultation process,” says cabinet member for investment and development at Cardiﬀ Council, Cllr Russell Goodway. “By making better use of the existing space, we have the opportunity to create a premier UK visitor destination,
© PK PHOTO ART
The ceremony celebrates the dynamic Cardiff property sector
a leading international culturally diverse area to live, work and enjoy. Connecting Atlantic Wharf to Cardiﬀ Bay provides the possibility of bringing over a million visitors to the city annually, resulting in the creation of thousands of new jobs and homes. “At the heart of the proposal is the drive to improve public transport across the area as part of the South Wales Metro programme. In addition to a new transport hub connecting the City, the Bay and St Mellons to support the movement of people, the intention is to connect the development to the proposed Cardiﬀ Heat Network to allow Cardiﬀ Council to meet its One Planet aspirations by 2050.” A website has been established where comments on the proposals can be left by the local community, and a questionnaire has been designed to gather feedback. In June, the Council and the consortium will host several online
interactive sessions and it is hoped that by the end of the summer some face-to-face events will be possible. “The start of the public consultation is an important step in the transformative proposals for the regeneration of Atlantic wharf,” says Mark Donnelly, chief operating oﬃcer, OVG International. “We want the arena to be a hub of the local community, so it is vital that local residents are able to feed into the plans and help shape the project.” Following the public consultation period, planning will be submitted in late autumn and, if granted, construction on the new arena and hotel will commence in spring 2022. For more: www.atlanticwharfcardiﬀ.co.uk
CARDIFF PROPERTY AWARDS
The Cardiff Property Awards are back on 26 November at The Coal Exchange Hotel. The Virtual Launch Event takes place on 28 June; head to the website to register. Nominations will open on the same day, which are free to enter via the website. Sponsorships are now available; contact annie.kelly@ mediaclash.co.uk or firstname.lastname@example.org for more info. The initial sponsors are Cardiff Life, Marsh Commercial, MDA Consulting and Sanctuary Financial Planning. www.cardiffpropertyawards.co.uk
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HUE’S Enriching colourful trends have arrived for summer’s home interiors. This year’s looks are all about personality, character and fun; here are four hot hues to try…
Poppy Floral wallpaper, from £137 for 2.4m x 2m, from Wall Funk, based just outside Cardiff; www.etsy.com/uk/shop/WallFunk
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BLUSH FLUSH From delicate dusty rose, to punchy hot pink, this playful tone will give your
home a little splash of fun. Mix it with vivid greens for a daringly modern vibe
2 3 5
4 8 6
1. Lampshade, from £139, Lobster Tea Party, Caerphilly; www.lobsterteaparty.com; 2. Trinket trays, £12, Silky Studio, Pen-y-Lan; www.silkystudio.etsy.com; 3. Plant pot, £15; Silky Studio, Pen-y-Lan; www.silkystudio.etsy.com; 4. Dried flowers, from £15, Mason Blooms, Canton; www.masonblooms.com; 5. Kitchen design, POA, Sigma 3 Kitchens, Llantrisant; www.sigma3.co.uk; 6. Mandarin Stone Pod Pink Porcelain tiles, £42.93/ M2, fitted by MWH Heating and Plumbing, Cardiff; www.mwhplumbing.co.uk; 7. Audubon cushion, £17, by Cardiff artist Laura Hickman Sell, Cynefn; www.cynefn.com; 8. Drawers, £100, El’s Reclaimed Interiors, Newport; www.elsreclaimedinterior.etsy.com; 9. Ombré chest, £225, Done and Dusted Vintage, just outside Cardiff; www.doneanddustedvintage.etsy.com 54 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk
SERENE GREEN Soft, welcoming botanical hues are still popular, providing a restful alternative to cooler choices
1. The Small Side, £229, Smug House, Pontyclun; www.smughouse.com; 2. Cabinet, £325, Crafty Coats, just outside Cardiff; www.craftycoats.co.uk; 3. Botanical Hex, £2.39 per tile, The Tap End, Pontyclun; www.thetapend.design; 4. Planter, £50, Steampunk Tommy, Rhiwbina; www.steampunktommy.co.uk; 5. Jurassic Park cushion set, £35.50, Spicetag, North Cardiff; www.spicetag.etsy.com; 6. Diffuser, £34.99, Hamptons, Penarth; www.hamptonspenarth.co.uk; 7. Mr Clarke clock, £75, Hamptons, Penarth; www.hamptonspenarth.co.uk; 8. Kitchen installation, POA, Kutchenhaus, Queens Arcade; www.kutchenhaus.co.uk; 9. Botanical art, £43 for set of three, Athena Interiors, Cwmbran; athenainteriors.co.uk
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CITRUS BURST Zesty, energising shades of yellow and orange will add freshness and zing to your interiors
1. Plant pot, £15; Silky Studio, Pen-y-Lan; www.silkystudio.etsy.com; 2. Wardrobe, £325, Crafty Coats, just outside Cardiff; www.craftycoats.co.uk; 3. Disco drinks cabinet, £345, Crafty Coats, just outside Cardiff; www.craftycoats.co.uk; 4. Shaker cabinet, POA, Harvey Jones, Morgan Arcade; www.harveyjones.com; 5. Sunflower cushion, £17, by Cardiff artist Laura Hickman Sell, Cynefn; www.cynefn.com; 6. Cirque Sunshine wallpaper, £65 per roll, Graham & Brown, available at W J Gardner, Cardiff; www.grahambrown.com; 7. Globe Lamp, £89.99, Hamptons, Penarth; www.hamptonspenarth.co.uk; 8. Lambswool throw, £89.99, Hamptons, Penarth; www.hamptonspenarth.co.uk
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GOT THE BLUES Timeless blues are elegant in their simplicity. The hue
brings tranquillity and beachside loveliness into the home
4 6 3 8
1. Kitchenaid mixer, £399, Chalkhouse Kitchens, Cardiff; www.chalkhousekitchens.co.uk; 2. Cabinet, £395, Crafty Coats, just outside Cardiff; www.craftycoats.co.uk; 3. Scallop chair (plus all other items in main shot), £4,000, Dioro Interiors, Whitchurch Road; www.diorointeriors.co.uk; 4. Reusable dish sponges, £2.50, Tabitha Eve, Pontypridd; www.tabithaeve.co.uk; 5. Cardiff art map print, £18, Firewater Gallery; www.firewatergallery.com; 6. Willow cushion, £17, by Cardiff artist Laura Hickman Sell, Cynefn; www.cynefn.com; 7. Vase, £6.50, Sadler Jones, Barry; www.sadlerjones.com; 8. Mug, £18, Sarah Glazier Ceramics, Whitchurch; www.sarahglazierceramics.co.uk; 9. Loft fire, from £2,419, Limegreen, Sloper Road; www.limegreenuk.com
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STRUCTURA 405 · XL kitchen sits on 100mm plinth gaining an extra 10% storage, compared with more traditional kitchens that have 150mm plinth · Sierra oak fronts · Laminate worktops with matching niche cladding (upstands)
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CARDIFFWORKS Unite For The Night is a voice for the night time industry in Cardiff and Swansea
Unite for the night
nite For The Night has been formed by Cardiff Licensees Forum and Swansea Hospitality Forum to be a voice for the night time industry as the Welsh Government tackles the pandemic. It represents over 170 independent operators across both cities as well as big industry names like Marston’s, Stonegate Group and Wetherspoons. It is estimated that by the time clubs can reopen, there will be up to 50 per cent fewer operating compared to pre-Covid figures. Cardiff and Swansea have not traditionally worked together closely on such matters, but these are times of great threat to the night time industry and both cities are standing shoulder to shoulder
to save our nightlife across Wales. “Our industry has been hit particularly hard during the pandemic – the majority of our pubs, bars and restaurants have been shut for much of the last year, and nightclubs and music venues are some of the few businesses that have been forced to close for the entirety of the Covid crisis,” says Nick Newman, who is part of the collaboration. “Yet, with Mark Drakeford stating on numerous occasions that he thinks social distancing will be in place in Wales for the rest of this year, the later night time economy (nightclubs, DJ and live music venues) is still wholly in the dark about when it might be able to open again, and whether continued social distancing will be in place – which would effectively ring the death knell for
most clubs and venues. “Our members are in a real state of anguish over their futures; we are dangling on the end of a string with countless jobs and livelihoods in Wales hanging in the balance. We understand that it is important that our night life does not reopen before it is safe to do so – that is something all our members agree on – however, we are calling for the night time industry to be treated with the same respect as other sectors in Wales by being given clarity on how and when we can operate.” Unite For The Night have written an open letter to First Minister urging for action to help the desperate night time economy in Wales. See more on their website below. For more: www.uniteforthenight.com
Virtual one hour sessions, all free to attend Search Cardiff Life on LinkedIn for upcoming dates and registration If you would like to get involved, please email email@example.com
“WITH SO MANY FILMS AND TV SERIES NOW BEING MADE IN CARDIFF, HOWELL’S IS IN HIGH DEMAND” to know the majority of my new colleagues remotely, and the ﬁrst day in mid-March, when almost everyone was back on site, I already felt like part of a really tight team.
Gareth started his role at the school this year
Howell’s School, Llandaﬀ GDST
As well as being one of the top local education facilities, the 160-year-old, Grade II Howell’s School is in high demand as a film and TV set; director of financial operations GARETH DYER tells us more Exciting things are happening at the school, could you tell us about them?
With so many ﬁlms and TV series now being made in Cardiﬀ, Howell’s is in high demand from location managers. Netﬂix, S4C and the BBC have all booked to ﬁlm with us this year; details of exactly what are top secret though! Over the summer holiday, Sky are ﬁlming some classroom scenes in part of our Prep School, and they have asked if staﬀ and students want to be extras, which is very exciting. It’s always a thrill to arrive at school and see the carpark turned into a production centre, with a catering lorry, make-up trailer, and large amounts of lighting and camera gear being hauled around and set up all over school. We have so many diﬀerent spaces – a swimming pool, the science labs, the dark oak-panelled Great Hall, a modern glass sports pavilion – so production companies can base themselves here for a few days and ﬁlm two or three diﬀerent sets with us. And what’s been filmed there in the past?
BBC1 has been here to ﬁlm: Stella,
a comedy drama with Ruth Jones; Decline & Fall, a comedy drama with Jack Whitehall; Doctor Who, with Jodie Whittaker. S4C have been here ﬁlming for: Kiri, with Sarah Lancashire; and Bregus, a Welsh language drama currently on TV. Sky and Netﬂix have been here more recently but the programmes haven’t aired yet. Tell us about the school itself…
Howell’s opened its doors in 1860, and has been a member of the Girls’ Day School Trust (GDST) since 1980. We educate girls aged three to 16, and boys and girls in the Co-Ed College. Students come to us from across Cardiﬀ and the Vale, as well as Newport, Caerphilly and beyond. How have things changed for the positive during the unprecedented times recently?
Having to do things very diﬀerently has shown us how ﬂexible and adaptable we can be. I have every conﬁdence that, if we needed to, all staﬀ and students could switch back to the guided home learning model overnight, with the normal
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school day from home, including a full timetable of live lessons, assemblies, pastoral check-ins and social time for the students. What are your proudest moments there?
I started at Howell’s in January this year, when we were in full lockdown, with the school doors closed to everyone except the children of key workers, with all the other students learning from home. It meant I had to get
Any plans in the pipeline?
In July, our restoration project begins, and will take up to three years to complete. This is a Grade II listed Victorian building, and we need to ensure it is preserved and protected for future generations of Howell’s students. It’s been here 160 years, and the work we undertake now will ensure that it will be here for another 160. In the slightly longer term, we have plans for a brand-new centre for the Co-Ed College students to call home. Tell us a few things about you, personally, that might surprise our readers...
When I was a student, I was on Bargain Hunt, in the era when it was still presented by David Dickenson. My partner and I were on the red team, and we won comfortably, with a proﬁt of £55, against a blue team pair of professional car booters.
For more: Cardiﬀ Road, Llandaﬀ; www.howells-cardiﬀ.gdst.net
Howell’s has been a member of the Girls’ Day School Trust since 1980
© BCB INTERNATIONAL / JON PLIMMER AT GSD MEDIA
Prince Charles officially opened the new BCB International headquarters
ROYAL TREATMENT HRH the Prince of Wales visited BCB International – a Cardiff-based survival equipment manufacturer – in May to officially open the new headquarters at Howell House. BCB International first got into the survival business by making cough syrup 166 years ago. Last year they converted their production lines into producing an anti-viral 80 per cent proof hand sanitiser and wide range of PPE items to the essential workers on the front line, protecting the protectors. “I’m thrilled to have this opportunity to be with you today and I can’t tell you how much I admire all the remarkable work you do here,” said Prince Charles on the day of the visit. “It’s been fascinating to hear about the whole range of products you produce which are clearly so sought after all around the word because of their very high quality and ingenuity.” For more: www.bcbin.com
REBEL REBEL Our Cardiff Life columnist and pop culture artist Nathan Wyburn has created another incredible local artwork. He spent a week at Tiny Rebel Brewery, a landmark Welsh venue in Rogerstone, crafting a masterpiece on the wall of the brewery using Tiny Rebel’s colourful lager cans, each painted with a little section of David Bowie’s face, coming together to produce an Andy Warhol-esque collage of the music icon. Nathan has provided artwork for the likes of Mariah Carey, Dame Shirley Bassey, Gareth Bale and HRH Prince Charles. He has also recently released two books of his work – POP tART, which chronicles a decade of his work, and 2020 Diary of Artist Nathan Wyburn, which showcases his work created during the first 12 months of the pandemic. For more: www.nathanwyburn.com
Celebrated artist Nathan Wyburn has created yet another masterpiece
“Finally”, we hear you cry, ZARA is coming to Cardiff this month
Byw – an online platform championing small local businesses – has just launched a new community membership for independent business owners in Wales. “The new community membership came about as we wanted to give small business owners in this community the opportunity to connect with one another, and also provide support to help grow and develop their businesses too,” says founder Gemma Richards, based in Cardiff. “It’s a place to celebrate each other’s successes, learn new skills, promote your business, share advice and build real relationships with people going through a similar journey.” For more: www.bywcommunity.co.uk
HOORAH FOR ZARA ZARA is opening a flagship store in St David’s Dewi Sant shopping centre, Cardiff. The 36,500 sq ft store will offer a full range of stylish menswear, womenswear and accessories across two levels. Opening in June on Upper Grand Arcade. For more: www.stdavidscardiff.com
Stephen Leeke (left) and Chris Leeke (right) new managing directors, with Mike Fowler, group finance director
The Leekes Retail & Leisure Group – owners of Leekes, the Vale Resort and Hensol Castle in south Wales – have become the sole owners of Hensol Castle Distillery following a buy-out of the minority shareholder. The distillery is in the cellars of the 17th century, Grade I listed Hensol Castle, which has already been transformed into a popular wedding and conference venue following a multi-million-pound investment in 2015. “These are exciting times for the distillery,” says new managing director of Hensol Castle Distillery, Christopher Leeke. “Our plans to open the visitor experience, tasting bar and gin school were scuppered by the pandemic, so we are now eagerly awaiting the lifting of restrictions so that we can finally showcase our exceptional distillery to the public.” For more: www.hensolcastledistillery.com
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You’ve never met a person prouder of FOR Cardiff’s work than Carolyn
CARDIFF LIFE AWARDS 2020 FOR CARDIFF
FOR Cardiff, the city’s Business Improvement District (BID), won the Civic Award at the Cardiff Life Awards 2020. Here we chat with its head of marketing and communications, Carolyn Brownell Firstly, can you tell us about FOR Cardiff’s background?
It’s Cardiff’s Business Improvement District (BID). We are a private, notfor-profit membership organisation which was voted for by the city’s businesses in June 2016. We began our first five-year term in December 2016 with an ambitious plan to transform Cardiff city centre. Since then, we have collectively invested over £5.6million into making Cardiff more welcoming, vibrant, and influential through award-winning campaigns, projects and initiatives. There is no other organisation in Cardiff that has a dedicated budget that’s only purpose is to invest in the city in this way. What does winning the Award mean to you all?
After a tough year, it shows the
CIVIC WINNER team that the hard work we put into trying to make Cardiff the best place it can be for businesses and residents is paying off and being recognised. How does being based in the city benefit the work you do?
Via the levy paid to FOR Cardiff via the businesses in the city centre, we reinvest everything into projects and teams to improve the city, whether that be making it cleaner, safer, reducing crime, increasing footfall, marketing it to new audiences and much more. Talk us through a recent example that best illustrates the work you do…
During the pandemic, one of the
“THERE IS NO OTHER ORGANISATION IN CARDIFF THAT INVESTS IN THE CITY IN THIS WAY” 64 I CARDIFF LIFE I www.mediaclash.co.uk
things that was most inspirational was the way that communities came together to support one another. Whether that be teachers helping their friends with home schooling, neighbours helping those shielding with shopping, or the tireless work of the essential workers who we all owe so much to. FOR Cardiff wanted to celebrate these Covid heroes and launched a campaign for people to nominate their hero; the top 10 then had their portraits painted by internationally acclaimed Cardiff artist Nathan Wyburn [our Cardiff Life columnist]. These portraits where then blown up and put on shop windows with explanations as to why they were nominated, to celebrate these amazing people. What jobs were you doing before you joined?
I worked in another BID. I’ve worked across the UK in different locations.
Any moment you have been particularly proud of?
FOR Cardiff identified that not enough was being done to
celebrate Cardiff’s unique selling point, our beautiful arcades, so we created the City of Arcades brand and event. These campaigns champion the businesses and rich history of the arcades to make sure they are recognised, nationally, but also internationally, and was subsequently awarded the marketing excellence award by the Institute of Downtown Association. Where do you see the BID in the future?
FOR Cardiff will be asking our business members to vote in June as to whether they want to invest and support us for another five-year term. We have some really exciting plans, which not only continue to expand on our existing projects, but new innovations such as a challenge fund, university internship, commitment to becoming an equality city and an investment in a unique Christmas experience for the city centre.
7 St Andrews Crescent, Cardiff; www.forcardiff.com
CARDIFFWORKS “TICK TOCK! NOMINATIONS CLOSE SOON!”
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Sponsors gain close association with the most prestigious event in Cardiff
That Award-winning feeling can’t be beaten…
If your business is based in Cardiff, and you’ve had a strong performance this past year, then enter for the chance to win…
“We’re always really excited about the Awards; we have been to many through the years and the evening in City Hall blows everyone else out of the water! Good luck again to you and everyone entering this year.” Craig Pugh, The Galley, Penarth
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Fancy winning a Cardiff Life Award? Get your nominations in by 10 June!
ook lively! You can still win a prestigious Cardiﬀ Life Award, but you’ll need to get your nomination in before the cut-oﬀ date of 10 June. Anyone can enter: it’s free via the Awards website. Winners gain marketing beneﬁts, a magniﬁcent trophy and the joy of being endorsed via Cardiﬀ’s biggest business ceremony. “Write your nomination, share your story and then you, your team and your business might be a ﬁnalist or even winner at the Cardiﬀ Life Awards,” says Claudia Butler, events and brand manager at MediaClash. “There are massive beneﬁts in being associated with the Awards – but please don’t leave it until too late. “The Awards celebrate all aspects of Cardiﬀ – from all areas of business to culture, arts and charity. Everyone plays their part in shaping this city: from the smallest of indies to the largest of corporates. And uniquely, they all come together in the Awards. NOMINATIONS Last call for nominations, these close on 10 June. Free to enter via the website www.cardifflifeawards.co.uk SPONSORSHIPS For remaining options, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com Sponsors so far include: Platinum Sponsor Marsh Commercial, plus Cardiff Life, 13Fields, Genero Productions, Lexus Cardiff, Park Plaza, Regus and WSET
“Winners receive coverage in Cardiﬀ Life, a hand-crafted trophy and window stickers to proudly display, plus the long-lasting remembrance of an award-winning moment.” There’s also the special invitation to watch the Cardiﬀ Life Awards Grand Reveal Day, 17 June, via Zoom, starting from 12pm. It’s free to attend; registration is on the Awards’ social media and website. It provides an unmissable opportunity to join dozens of businesses and companies from across the Cardiﬀ business community as we ﬁnd out the 2021 Finalists – as well as to hear all the latest updates on the Awards. If you are interested in becoming a sponsor, please contact Annie Kelly, annie.kelly@ mediaclash.co.uk, or Mark George, mark.george@ mediaclash.co.uk For more: www.cardiﬄifeawards.co.uk; @CardiﬀLifeAwards
GRAND REVEAL DAY There’s a special invitation to watch the Cardiff Life Awards Grand Reveal Day, 17 June, via Zoom, starting from 12pm. It’s free to attend; registration is on the Awards’ social TICKETS Updates when on sale. Please note: We sell out every year with many on the waiting list
AWARDS The uberglam Cardiff Life Awards will be held at City Hall on 30 September 2021. Nothing beats being there… SOCIAL MEDIA Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter for all updates @cardifflifeawards
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“I still get called a female fireman”
GEORGINA GILBERT The firefighter from the South Wales Fire and Rescue Service talks human differences, tackling inequality, and Cardiff’s diversity... As part of our celebrations for Pride Month, we chat with Cardiff-based firefighter Georgina Gilbert. George is part of the firefighting team who makes up the Antarctic Fire Angels – a group striving to become the first all-female emergency services team to ski across Antarctica. Their 1,000-mile route in one of the harshest environments in the world will be an effort to raise awareness of mental health issues and to help eradicate gender stereotypes. In a male-dominated career, do you feel it’s important to tackle gender stereotypes?
Tackling gender stereotypes is
the key to a 50:50 society. Using gender-neutral language where the pronoun is unknown is important. We see and hear all too often masculine terms for job roles that are performed by all genders. For example, ‘fireman’; the assumption that firefighters are men is reinforced by the use of the masculine terminology. Girls and boys should grow up in a society where every role can be done by both sexes – it is the right ‘person’ for the job. I still get called a ‘female fireman’. Let’s flip it and say male firewoman, daft right?! Do you ever feel a responsibility to fight inequality that you see?
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Fight is a strong word. Only in the direst circumstances should you have the need to fight. I’ve always found that most issues of inequality or injustice are primarily down to a lack of understanding. Having a conversation is key to understanding and often resolves the issue straight away. To say ‘fight’ I’d say puts a barrier up because no one likes to lose. Do you ever feel a need to ‘prove’ yourself?
When I first joined 21 years ago, yes, I did. I cannot believe I let myself do that, it’s just not my personality at all, but back then I was young(ish) and keen to impress and not be seen as ‘weak’ at anything. Now it’s all about proving to WOMEN what WOMEN can do. How inclusive/diverse do you think Cardiff is as a city?
It’s been a while since I’ve been out in Cardiff, but what I can say from experience and listening to friends going out in Cardiff as part of the LGBTQ+ community, is the pubs and clubs are far more inclusive now. Everyone is welcome to enjoy the atmosphere regardless of gender or sexual preference. Has being based in Cardiff helped you feel free to be yourself?
Yes definitely. I live, work and socialise in and around Cardiff and in all environments; I’ve never been made to feel uncomfortable about my myself or my sexuality. What LGBTQ+ friendly businesses in Cardiff stand out for you?
Hands down, The Goodwash Company, and Hang Fire Southern Kitchen, both in Barry. Mandy at Goodwash is one of my closest friends and the inclusive ethos and vibe it has is infectious!
I’ve just spoken to Mandy and we’ll be planning something for later in the year, possibly for the Antarctic Fire Angels, a nice little fundraiser to acknowledge coming out of Covid restrictions. How do you think attitudes are changing towards the LGBTQ+ community?
As a whole, it is moving in the right direction, but there is still a way to go. Transgender issues are where gay and lesbian issues were 20 years ago. Poor understanding and cultural differences can cause tension; differences between all of us as human beings should be considered part of being a human and not as anything else. What’s your personal experience with ‘coming out’?
I’ve always believed that there are five stages to coming out. 1: What’s going on? Why do I feel different? Why don’t I like the people that my classmates like? 2: Ah ok, I think I get it but I’m afraid of the term, I don’t want to be seen as different or be teased. 3: The true coming out phase where you tentatively tell your closest allies, and you slip topics into conversations etc. 4: I AM WHAT I AM – the ‘I don’t care what anyone thinks, you can take it or leave it and no one can change me!’ phase, or the actioning phase, when everyone gets to know who you are. 5: The ‘I’m a human being who is gay and I’m not defined by a label’ stage; I am a person and I am comfortable with sexuality. It does not define me, nor should it influence the way people speak to or treat me. n
The Antarctic Fire Angels will ski across Antarctica in 2023 and need to raise £500,000. To find out more and to donate, visit www.antarcticfireangels.co.uk
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