Tag Archives: Cardiff

First Bitcoin Cash Machine in Cardiff

People in Cardiff are now able to use a Bitcoin cash machine, buying as well as selling bitcoins. 

Bitcoin is a form of virtual currency. It could be paid peer-to-peer, and users can transact directly without banks. This currency is not centralised and until now it is the largest of its kind in terms of total market value.

St David’s Day with International Flavour

Over 600 people took active part in the St David’s parade, which is one of the grandest Welsh activities. People come from variety backgrounds getting involved, including the Nepalese Society and the United Filipino organisation.

This year, the parade as usual launched from the City Hall, walked around the city center and proceeded to the Cardiff Castle as its destination. The parade was a culture feast, consisting of diverse form of arts from traditional Welsh folk music to Bollywood dance.

Parade Launched Photo: CNP
Parade from City Hall
Photo: CNP

This non-military parade was an opportunity for Welsh people joining such a dignified, imaginative celebration of welsh heritage and culture. People wore daffodils, hand in hand with their families, enjoying the parade alongside the path. They smiled, sang and danced, which made the whole city immerse in a joyful atmosphere.

Hundreds of people from other places also gathered in Cardiff on this day. People from the Nepalese Society, for example, have participated in the parade since the first year 2004. Women in the United Filipino organisation have already regarded Wales as their second homeland. They called themselves “Filipino Wales” as their husbands were British.

The Nepal Society Photo: CNP
The Nepalese Society
Photo: CNP

Apart from celebrating the national day, some Welsh people strongly hoped for the autonomy of Wales as well. David Petersen, who is the chair as well as the founder of the national St Davids Parade committee, stated firmly backing up for the devolution of Wales. He expected that Wales would be independent in the foreseeing future. Non Humphries brought her 4-month daughter to the parade. She gave her wish of a more autonomous Wales. However, some were reluctant to see the independence. They did think having certain power such as passing some laws by themselves is necessary but it would be a waste of money to insist on deviating from the England.

David Petersen Photo: CNP
David Petersen on the right
Photo: CNP

According to Andrew Davis’s report from the Guardian, the call for renaming the National Assembly for Wales to the Welsh parliament has long been in the debate since 2012. “Today, in 20 fields such as health, education, local government and the environment, the national assembly has the authority to legislate without Westminster. The executive itself is now separate from the assembly and shortly after the referendum rebranded itself the Welsh government. So today, I am calling on the National Assembly for Wales to be renamed the Welsh parliament.”

Last Friday, the proposal of name-changing for the assembly has been presented into at the Welsh Conservative Conference in Cardiff for a further devolution for Wales. Prime Minister David Cameron and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg were both in attendance.

Tuition fees continue to haunt Lib Dems

The Liberal Democrats are still struggling with the legacy of their promise not to raise tuition fees, made in the 2010 General Elections. The party backtracked on the promise once they formed the coalition government. The topic was discussed in the recently held Welsh Liberal Democrats Spring conference in Cardiff.  

Liberal Democrats Spring Conference Photos: CNP
Liberal Democrats Spring Conference
Photo: CNP

Some university students believe that politicians break their promises once they are in power. There is a resentment mostly amongst English students towards Liberal Democrats. Some of them told Cardiff News Plus that they may not support the party in the forthcoming general elections.

CNP also spoke to the Welsh Liberal Democrats during their conference and asked them for their opinion on the issue. When confronted on the matter, Assembly Members sounded pretty familiar whereas Cardiff Central MP had a different opinion. Jenny Willott said that she would have loved the government to fulfill the pledge and not to hike the tuition fees. She also told CNP that she personally voted against the increase in tuition fees because she felt strongly about the issue.

Cardiff Central MP, Jenny WIllot Photo: CNP
Cardiff Central MP, Jenny WIllott
Photo: CNP

Meanwhile, Kirsty Williams AM for Brecon and Radnorshire and the Leader of Welsh Liberal Democrats maintains that the party backtracked on tuition fees because they did not form the government alone in 2010.

Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader, Kirsty Williams Photo: CNP
Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader, Kirsty Williams
Photo: CNP

The matter is gaining momentum as Ed Miliband has challenged both David Cameron and Nick Clegg not to raise the tuition fees beyond £9000. The Labour party has also promised that they will cut down the tuition fees if they win the upcoming general elections.

Meanwhile The National Union of Students (NUS) has supported the Labour party’s initiative and has strongly welcomed these commitments as a step in right direction. On the other hand students have their own opinions on the issue and some believe that it has shaken their confidence in Lib Dem’s policies.

But one thing is clear that each political party is exploiting tuition fees issue to garner the support of student community. How much will they succeed and how much will it benefit students? The answers to these questions lie in the election results and the government policies that follow.

Seed Swappers enjoy Seedy Saturday

Local gardeners are making preparations for spring’s planting in their annual Seedy Saturday. Gardeners there swap their seeds, sharpen their tools and enjoy their gardening weekend. 

In Seedy Saturday, gardeners in Cardiff have an opportunity swapping their seeds, and for those garden lovers with no seeds to swap, they also have an alternative to pay a small donation for the seeds they want.

Swapped Seeds Photo: CNP
Swapped Seeds
Photo: CNP

Alongside with swapping seeds, people there could try sharpening their tools. Just bring the shears and secateurs to Richard Weaver, he will help sharpen the tools and share his tips in sharpening, like using the colour pen to mark the tools.

Richard Weaver Photo: CNP
Sharpen tools
Photo: CNP

Some workshops are specially designed for children, including seed planting in old boots, newspaper pot making, and bee keeping. Roger Phillips is a bee man. He is mainly responsible for taking care of those bees and showing people around. Some  bee costumes are offered to children, preventing them from stung when observing bees.

Bee costume Photo: CNP
Bee costume
Photo: CNP
Newspaper pot making Photo: CNP
Newspaper pot making
Photo: CNP

Seedy Saturday is organized annually by the Canton Community Gardens Group and Cardiff in Bloom, which usually happens in February, which is the time for planning another year’s gardening. Sue Waring, one of organizers of this event, is a volunteer from the Canton Community Gardens Group. “This activity is very popular, and it attracts many garden lovers”, Sue said, “People who missed this event can contact the Canton Community Gardens Group if they need some help on gardening.”

Bee keeping Photo: CNP
Bee frame
Photo: CNP

People in Cardiff celebrate Chinese New Year

Thousands of local people celebrated to welcome the Goat Year. During this happy moment, traditional Chinese celebrations were carried out in Cardiff. Chinese, Korean and Malaysian have various ways of celebrations in the UK just the same as what they used to do in their own countries. They gathered together with friends, made phone calls to their families, trying to get a feeling of being at home.

As a routine life for Chinese people during the Spring Festival, Spring Festival Evening Gala is recognized to be the most watched Gala around the world.  People in Cardiff can watch a Chinese New Year Gala for only three pounds, too. Thirty actors contributed to the Gala and around three hundred and fifty people watched the show together.

Lion Dance Photo: CNP
Lion Dance Photo: CNP

Among all the customs, Lion Dance is the most fascinating one. It originated as a celebration dance for beating a mysterious monster called Nian. Later the image of the animal was recreated and used when people celebrate Chinese New Year.

Lion Dance Photo: CNP
Lion Dance Photo: CNP

British people also joined The New Year feast. Some of them knew a lot about Chinese traditions, some of them used a western way to bring people joy. Also people from Korea and Malaysia have their own way to spending their New Year’s eve.

Lion Dance Photo: CNP
Lion Dance Photo: CNP

Family reunion dinners are the most important thing in Chinese tradition. Here in Cardiff, people do not have their family around but they have got their friends.

 

Ukrainians in Wales remember the uprising

By YIDI ZHU and AKMARAL SYZDYKOVA

It has been one year since the Euromaidan protest in Kiev. Ukrainians in Cardiff are reflecting back on it as two Ukrainian fine art photographers, Sergiy Lebedynskyy and Alexey Ostrovskiy display their photos in the city. 

It is a day to remember “Heavenly hundred”, 106 participants of Euromaidan, the Kiev protest killed at that time. Friends and relatives are joining together in the streets of Ukraine to recall those who were killed during Euromaidan. It is a political movement that started a year ago in Kiev’s main square. People claimed European integration, which in its turn meant forced resignation for President Viktor Yanukovich. The clashes lead to violence and resulted in the Ukrainian revolution.

Meanwhile in Cardiff, an exhibition of images taken during the protest is being displayed. Sergiy Lebedynskyy took lots of photos during Euromadan last year to visualise the movement of the Kiev protest. By contrast,  Alexey Ostrovskiy provides the classical still lifes in Ukraine.

The exhibits on display
The exhibits on display. Photo:CNP

The images portrays the situation in Kiev when the protest that lead to Ukraine’s uprising was taking place.

One of the images in the exhibition. Photo: CNP
One of the images in the exhibition. Photo: CNP

Irina Alexandrov is a Ukrainian living in Cardiff. “I came to this exhibition because I am really interested in what is going on in my motherland.” She says. “The photos here are really impressive and show the real situation in Ukraine.” She wishes for Ukraine to join the  European Union and thinks that people in Ukraine are fighting for a better life.

Lzena Alexandzov-The artist
Irina Alexandrov. Photo:CNP

Emyr Young, a Cardiff photographer says he loves the photos because they show real people and real lives. He also says these photos raised his concern about the people in Ukraine.

Another photo being displayed. Photo: CNP
Another photo being displayed. Photo: CNP

The kickplate project says they held the exhibition because people have always been informed about the situation in Ukraine through digital media, and they want to show different aspects of Ukraine. In hope that it will raise awareness about the situation in Ukraine.

Apart from Yanukovich’s resignation, a number of other events followed Euromaidan. Ukraine lost Crimea, as Russia annexed the peninsula. War started in the Donbass region of Ukraine. It is estimated that more than 5 mln people are involved into this armed conflict. We have met people in Cardiff with Ukrainian origins and asked them to reflect on the one year anniversary of Euromaidan.

Three Hardrock bands visit Cardiff

Web poster of the concert  Photo: Creative Commons
Web poster of the concert Photo: Creative Commons

Are you ready to go crazy this week? Two death-core bands along with a metal-core band will have a joint performance on tomorrow (Feb. 17th). 

Two death-core bands from America, Chelsea Grin and Veil of Maya will have a joint concert with a British native metal-core band from Birmingham, Oceans Ate Alaska in the Students’ Union of Cardiff University.

Chelsea Grin   Photo: Creative Commons
Chelsea Grin Photo: Creative Commons

Oceans Ate Alaska will present their new debut album this month. During the concert, they will reveal more information about it. Ticket booking is now available in various ways.

Booking details Photo: CNP
Booking details Photo: CNP

The concert is tomorrow night at 7 p.m. Let’s rock overnight!

Food for people in crisis

A new foodbank is opened at St. Mellons. It opens every Monday from 11 am to 1 pm. This foodbank currently has around 300 volunteers but is recruiting more to work.

There are six foodbanks in Cardiff. Christian Jose Portillo Castillo came to Cardiff as a political refugee from Nicaragua several days ago. He has got help from the Cathays Foodbank in Cardiff. The foodbank provides him emergency food to maintain his life.

Photo: CNP
Photo: CNP

Cathays foodbank  is supported by the Woodville Baptist Church. It opens every Tuesday from 1 pm to 3 pm and every Saturday from 11 am to 1 pm. The food is donated by schools, churches, individuals and other organisations. People could get food by using foodbank vouchers. Usually, the food could maintain their lives for three to five days.

Photo: CNP
Photo: CNP

There are eight volunteers in Cathays foodbank. Some of them are students and government staffs. Catnn Lotwick is the leader of the foodbank, who has been a volunteer for four years. She says the foodbank  only provides  food to people who are suffering financial hardship or people unable to feed themselves and their families. The foodbank also helps people who come from other countries.

 

 

Free Renaissance music concert

People in Cardiff had the chance to enjoy Renaissance music. Eleven musicians gathered in National Museum Cardiff last Friday to bring a seventeenth century music feast to audience.

Photo: CNP

This concert lasted about 45 minutes. It featured vocal and instrumental music by Giovanni Paolo Cima, Giovanni Legrenzi, Johann Rosenmüller and Heinrich Schütz. The concert attracted loads of people who were fond of seventeenth century music or wanted to get close to it.

Photo: CNP
Photo: CNP

Jenny Andrews is a retired teacher and one of the audience. She said she preferred classical music to pop music, but did not know much about Renaissance music, so she was interested in coming along to find out what it was about and she also enjoyed it.

Art from behind the bars

Artworks by prisoners are on display at Cardiff Bay. The works were selected among entries to the 2014 Koestler Awards which celebrates artistic achievement of people serving prison sentences. The award is presented each year by the Koestler Trust, a charitable scheme that helps prisoners exhibit and sell their works of art. 

Artists worked with different materials Photo: CNP
Artists worked with different materials Photo: CNP

The idea is to use the power of the arts to inspire, engage and help rehabilitate offenders. But people who were convicted of less serious crimes have also benefited as Welsh women on community sentences took up the job of curators of the exhibition.

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Millennium Center Photo: CNP

This was possible through a partnership with Gibran UK, an organisation dedicated to helping people move out of the criminal justice system. They say that the Welsh curators were in turn inspired by their job to produce artworks of their own, which is on display as part of the exhibition. Gibran said it helped the women gain both skills and self confidence to take part in the process.

The exhibition, “Illumination”,  runs through 13th of April and entrance is free.