This is a community website for Grangetown in Cardiff, highlighting people, business, community activities, local news and things to do in the area and linking other websites and blogs.

We live locally; this is a voluntary project - in connection with Grangetown Community Action - free and independent. We are the online presence of the long-running Grange News community paper, which has been distributed to 6,000 local homes every four months for more than 35 years.

E-mail us on if you'd like to help, are local or would like to send any contributions for inclusion. Also if you'd like to be included FREE in our DIRECTORY,

You can also follow us on Twitter @grangecardiff and look for Grangetown Community Action on Facebook. We have a growing number of followers and are keen to encourage a social network to promote Grangetown community events, activities, issues, businesses and organisations.

'Unique experience' at first Grangetown pop-up restaurant

For one night only, Cornwall Street church hall was transformed into a pop-up restaurant for Grangetown's first pop-up restaurant. We asked Branwen Llewellyn about the new venture.

Tell us who's behind it? Our names are Tomos and Branwen, and we are brother and sister originally from a small village near Bala in North Wales, but who have made Grangetown our home. I've lived here for five years, and Tomos for two. Tomos is a chef by trade, and although I have an office job, I think it's fair to say that any time spent away from my desk and not sleeping is time spent thinking about food. Tomos is very much the same, and approached me one day with the suggestion of organising a pop-up restaurant, and here we are, a week away from the big night!

What can people expect on the night - are you dressing the place up or will it be all about the food and the atmosphere? People can expect a great meal served in a friendly and open atmosphere. We enjoy home cooking, and we hope that both the meal and the atmosphere will reflect that, whilst still giving our guests a special and unique experience.

Pop-up restaurants have happened elsewhere but this is a first for Grangetown - how do you think the place is changing? Cardiff is fast becoming a 'foodie' city. Grangetown has a wealth of restaurants, take-aways and food stores, and this pop-up is just one small add-on to what is already a vibrant food scene. New initiatives are coming to Grangetown all the time, and our hope is that the Porthi pop-up restaurant will become a regular event for the Grangetown community.

What are you favourite foodie places in the city? There may be too many to mention as we love everything from Pizza Pronto to Milkwood, from Bar 44 to Vegetarian Food Studio, from Bangkok Cafe to Mezza Luna. And Canna Deli, of course, where Tomos is the chef!

What would you like to do after this one? We're concentrating on getting the first Porthi event under our belts before thinking about the next, but in the meantime would welcome any suggestions for future menus - what would you like to see at the next Porthi pop-up? Let us know via the email address (below)

How many tables are available and how do people book? We're actually very near capacity now for this first pop-up, but anyone interested can contact us on

'Ambitious' Channel View transformation unveiled

An early artist impression - although this is not the final detailed plan for how the estate might look.

Channel View estate would be completely transformed - and double in size - in proposals being unveiled to the public for the first time.

Estate residents have been consulted in recent weeks about the ideas - although plans are at their early stage.

Local councillor and cabinet member for housing and communities Lynda Thorne, said: "We have an exciting opportunity to redevelop the Channel View estate to deliver more quality social housing in the city and create an improved environment for residents."

The number of homes on the estate would almost double from the current 184 properties - to 360 - as well as the creation of more in-demand three and four-bedroom family homes.

It would involve the demolition of the 14-storey high Channel View tower block, home to 86 residents. Plans to reclad the tower were already put on hold due to Grenfell, but the 1970s building was also facing significant costs to refurbish and replace ageing systems including plumbing.

New cladding had been due to be fitted but plans were put on hold after the Grenfell disaster last June.

It is understood with a replacement expected to cost upwards of £12m, new low-rise replacement homes were looked at as an alternative and tower residents have been consulted recently about this new option.

Another artist impression released by Cardiff Council.

The new vision includes flats - but no more than seven storeys high at most across the project.

Mrs Thorne said: "The Channel View estate regeneration is ambitious and part of our vision to not only tackle the pressures to provide decent homes for the people who need them but also to create more sustainable and better connected communities across the city."

It is believed the council is looking for private partners to develop the mix of homes.

The proposal also includes a new sheltered housing scheme which could provide a hub from which to deliver older person services. Mrs Thorne said a review last year found structural issues and poor design on the estate, a poor bus route and "low quality" public spaces.

The estate is bordered by new private housing at Windsor Quay, the Bay and the Marl.

The council also has a city-wide target of building 1,000 more social homes by 2022.

"Our plans are at an early stage and we want to work with the existing community to ensure they are involved in the regeneration of the estate which will deliver a good mix of private houses and apartments for sale as well as new council homes in the area," added Mrs Thorne.

Plaque remembers 150 'forgotten' war dead

More than 150 men and women from Grangetown have been honoured 100 years after they lost their lives during World War One.

Five years of research carried out by the Grangetown Local History Society discovered that the names of many people from the area who died were not included on the war memorial when it was first erected in July 1921.

The anomalies were found during research for the details of the 330 soldiers and sailors who were listed alongside their regiments or ships on the original monument in Grange Gardens.

Many details of the casualties - where they lived and worked were discovered - but then other names came to light involving dozens more who for various reasons had been missed.

Now a plaque and plinth have been added to the base of the memorial, in time for the centenary of the end of the war.

"It began with finding around 30 new names initially but it was surprising to uncover many more," said Steve Duffy, who has been researching the names for Grangetown Local History Society's World War One project.

"Some were long established families in the area with strong connections, so there is no straightforward reason why they might have been missed off. There were also three women who died directly as a result of the war in very different circumstances. We have built up an online record but it's really fitting now that their contributions are not forgotten and are remembered with the many others."

Zena Mabbs, Rita Spinola and Ray Noyes of Grangetown Local History Society

Cardiff Council in partnership with Mossfords Ltd, have now added a bronze plaque in memory of those whose "names are not recorded here" to the Grade II listed memorial. The plaque says "more than 140" and the number currently stands at 152.

Cabinet member with responsibility for bereavemen services, Councillor Michael Michael, said: "The sacrifices made by those who fought and died on our behalf should never be forgotten. This plaque ensures that, in this important centenary year, every Grangetown resident who lost their life in the service of our country is honoured in the place they called home."

The original memorial was erected using £1,000 raised by voluntary subscription by the "Grangetown War Heroes Memorial Committee" and was designed by Henry Charles Fehr (1867-1940) who also designed the dragon on City Hall. It was officially opened in front of large crowds on the fifth anniversary of the Battle of the Somme.

Tramshed soothe residents late night fears

And lollipops to help in making sure any problems stay licked...

Police and councillors also attended the residents meeting

Tramshed management have met local residents to ease fears about a new late licence which will allow them to open until 3am for 20 events a year.

Worries over noise and disturbance to local residents, and an increase in incidents of crime and disorder were put forward as objections by local ward councillors and police. But the city's licensing sub committee granted the application to allow the limited number of DJ/club events.

Since then the venue in Pendyris Street has met residents, mostly living in the Taff Mead area, to discuss concerns.

They outlined measures they were taking to stop problems - including a designated pick-up spot for taxis away from residential streets, organised dispersal and a look at queuing away from the street.

They will also hand out lollipops to people leaving the event nights - as a subtle and sweet way of keeping them quiet! "It's a way of reducing the noise, it sounds a bit crazy but it has been shown to already work [elsewhere]," said Tramshed director of operations Ben Newby.

The venue will be allowed to open for 20 DJ-only events - providing the bar closes at 2.30am. There are also conditions relating to police being given 21 days notice of each events and security staff having to wear eight body cameras.

The first event will be on Saturday 22nd September.

But Mr Newby said the venue had no intention of becoming a nightclub, saying it remained committed to putting on a mixture of events. As well as a continuation of live gigs, there would be comedy, a Crazy Cat Fest in July for cat-lovers, the forthcoming Welsh Book Awards and it had also been booked for private events like weddings.

"We've never wanted Tramshed to become a nightclub - it's a multi-event space," he told residents, who have been given contact details to report any issues if they crop up.

A new team is also in place running the venue - the general manager has been there a year, with the cinema programme starting up again recently under new operators. There are also plans to look at the kitchen re-opening eventually, after the Waiting Room stopped doing food.

Residents were also asked to inquire about using the bar areas during downtime for community groups and meetings, after hopes of a community room in another part of the development failed to materialise.

A ponder with a pint

A Grangetown vicar is offering the chance to discuss some of life’s big questions – at the local.

Father David Morris is organising monthly “Ponder With A Pint” evenings on Sundays at The Grange pub.

As well as parishoners, he hopes to attract the curious from other faiths or not faith at all. “Many people think they know what the church believes about certain issues, but in reality a church can contain many varied views and opinions on a particular matter,” said Fr David.

He wants the group meetings to be informal and sociable, with those taking part agreeing to listen and respect all those taking part.

Future topics are set to include religion and science; gender and sexuality and its place in the church.

It is aimed at myth-busting and perhaps reach people who would normally not think about going to church.

Fr David has chosen the Resurrection as the topic for the first group – on Sunday 10th June (6pm).

“Belief in the Resurrection often challenges believers as well as non believers, because it’s difficult to get our heads round the idea that someone could come back from the dead,” he said.

“We’ll discuss if or how we can evidence this claim and whether a belief in the Resurrection is essential in being follower of Jesus”.

Fr David wants to explore issues which people might be affected by collectively or individually.

“Discussion and dialogue helps us to consider different opinions while being respectful of difference – it can help us to understand one another better,” he said.

“At the end of the day we all face difficult life decisions and grapple with challenging questions on a daily basis, that often have no black and white answers and often lead to more questions, so grappling with those questions together can be a helpful process.”

There’s no shortage of chat usually at The Grange, recently winner of the CAMRA Cardiff Pub of the Year title for 2018.

The pub is also organising its own story-telling evening on 3rd July (8pm), where people are being asked for anecdotes and stories around the theme "first times".

For his sessions, Fr David wants the tone to fit in with the pub’s ambience. “Our conversations will be in a relaxed environment while enjoying our favourite bevvies!” said the Church-in-Wales vicar.

“Unfortunately the drinks are not on the church, but the conversation is!”

Award as head teacher calls time on 38-year career

Paul Catris receives his award, with Cardiff South and Penarth AM Vaughan Gething, Councillor Ashley Lister, chair of Grangetown Community Action and Wales rugby star Gavin Henson.

Paul Catris, head of St Patrick’s, is retiring in July after 38 years at the Roman Catholic school in Lucknow Street.

A retirement party was held in the school grounds on Friday evening and a celebratory mass was held at St Patrick's Chruch on Sunday. He was also presented with the Joan Gallagher Award by Grangetown Community Action, which recognises long standing community contributions for his "fantastic service".

Fiona McAllister looked back at his career in Grangetown News: Mr Catris arrived in September 1980 as a newly qualified teacher straight from college and has been at the 300-pupil primary school ever since. He became deputy head in 1989 before being appointed head 10 years later.

He has close links to the area, having been brought up in neighbouring Canton. His wife Kathryn was herself a pupil at St Patrick’s, with the couple getting married at St Patrick’s Church, before going on to raise four children. Mr Catris attended St Mary’s Primary School in Canton, then Bishop Hannon High School and finally sixth form at St Illtyd’s, before studying for a degree in Geology at Cardiff University.

But it wasn’t a foregone conclusion that he would become a teacher – following his graduation he contemplated working in Egypt in the oil exploration industry or going on to work in the North Sea oil fields. “It was a massive change-around in deciding to become a teacher – I did all the geological training and thought ‘Do I really want to work on an oil rig?"

"Teaching had always interested me and I loved the idea of helping children develop, so my change in career stemmed from that,” he recalled.

When he joined the school, the late Peggy Rein was the head teacher – “an iconic figure in the school and Grangetown, with a huge interest in sport”. With their shared passion, St Patrick’s continued to thrive on the sports field. After she retired Christina Barry was appointed head – “a very caring leader with excellent interpersonal skills”.

Mr Catris says, “I’ve been very lucky to have had such supportive heads during my career and to have been able to learn so much from their different leadership styles.” He’s also quick to praise all of his committed staff both past and present, his excellent deputy Mrs Debbie Swain who has been his number two since his appointment, the governors and the school PTA, all of whom have been “incredibly supportive”.

During his time at the school he says he has seen massive changes, especially in technology. “When I first came in to the classroom the only IT we had was a black and white TV – there were no computers, iPads, white boards, everything was written in chalk on the blackboard”.

Grangetown has also become increasingly more multicultural over the years and the many pupil ethnicities at the school reflect this. There are currently 27 different languages spoken in school, from various parts of Europe, Asia and Africa. Mr Catris describes many pupils starting at St Patrick’s with little or no English language skills, but leaving at the end of Key Stage 2 completely fluent.

While approximately 50% of the pupils are from Catholic homes, the school also has pupils from other faiths. Mr Catris describes this as one of the highlights of his work, “We are one family with all the faiths coming together.” He says, “There’s a very strong link between the Church and the school and our shared values permeate school life. There has always been a strong bond between the parish and school communities.”

During his time at the school he has worked alongside six priests – Canon O’Flynn, Fr. Jack Fahy, Fr. Bogdan Wera, Fr. Bill Lloyd, Fr. Ieuan Wyn-Jones and the current parish priest at St Patrick’s, Canon Mike Evans – in nurturing the pupils’ faith and putting Gospel values at the centre of school life.

Mr Catris’ satisfaction is “seeing children succeed and making a difference to their lives.” He has seen thousands of children come through the school in his career and describes being into his third and even fourth generation at St Patrick’s now. “It’s lovely when their parents come in and say, ‘Do you remember teaching me?’”

Meanwhile, the governors have praised his devotion to the school and community over almost four decades. “Pupils and staff will miss him very much as he’s been a loyal, hands-on and steadfast leader and he will retire with the respect and love of all”.

Paul on the Grangetown Festival parade for the last time as head teacher in June.

Pete Collett, chair of governors said: “Nothing is more important to Paul than the education and well-being of the children at St Patrick’s and this can be seen any time you enter the school and see the genuine love and respect from the staff and pupils alike. It’s fast approaching, but Paul’s retirement is a time I’ve been dreading. He is such a part of the fabric of the school and the community of Grangetown and will be missed. However, he is so deserving of his retirement after 38 years of fantastic service.”

Mr Catris’ love and passion for the school and children remain as strong today as ever and his leaving will create a huge void in his life. He is looking forward to travelling and rekindling his passion for art.

And goodbye to nursery school head

Jan Comrie has retired after a long association as head teacher of Grangetown Nursery School, developing it into a centre of excellence.

"Since 2005 my life has been touched by 2,050 children and their families, so many faces and names and so many tears, scraped knees, bumps, laughter and joy," she said. "Our families put so much trust in us and I am overwhelmed by the support I've had from the community over the years."

Mrs Comrie said her time at Grangetown was "the happiest of my 30 year career" and said it would remain "very close to my heart."

She arrived at the school after being Advisory Teacher for Foundation Phase in Cardiff. Before that she taught at Lakeside Primary School and Gladstone Infant School.

Chair of governors Councillor Lynda Thorne, said: "Jan is passionate about the early years and providing the best possible start to a child's education journey. Throughout her career, she has shared her expertise widely, most recently leading training for schools within the Central South Consortium."

She said Jan had never lost sight of her belief that children learn best through exploration and play. "Her contribution to the world of education will be genuinely missed, both personally and professionally, by the many who have worked alongside her," Mrs Thorne added.

Festival beats the weather

The 2018 parade had a myths and legends theme.

Grangetown Festival this year took place over the whole of the month of June.

The highlight as usual was the annual Carnival Day in Grange Gardens on Saturday 16th June. Despite a mixed day as far as the weather was concerned, we had a good attendance. This year's parade theme was myths and legends - and thankfully the showers kept away for the children's march along Corporation Road to the park! We had a fair few wizards and fairies, as well as Robin Hood - and an imaginative Grangetown Whale from Ninian Park pupils.

Photos from the day - click on the smaller images for larger versions.

Thanks to all the craft and food stalls and local organisations who supported the festival, including Eisteddfod 2018, Ysgol Hamadryad PTA, RSPB and Cylch Meithrin Grangetown. It was also fantastic to see local business Sweet Treats there - only days after a fire wrecked their van, with stock inside. Despite a breeze and showers, the sun did make an appearance - and the Pavilion came in handy when it poured briefly!

Meanwhile, the festival month kicked off with a well-attended Community Iftar on Friday 7th June in the Grange Pavilion. This was the sunset breaking of the Ramadhan fast, which the whole community was invited to join - it was a lovely chance to socialise and eat, with food being provided thanks to a fantastic response from local businesses. On a continuing theme of coming together, an interfaith and community declaration of working together and understanding and respect will be made at 3pm in Grange Gardens on Sunday 10th June.

A sports day was held at Sevenoaks Park, while The Grange pub quiz raised £136 for Grangetown Community Action, which organises the festival and other projects in the area.


Play and planting at the heart of community

The residents group Friends of Pentre Gardens came together seven years ago in 2011, with an aim to help make our local neighbourhood safe and welcoming.

We work together with our community to organise play and planting sessions in the gardens for local children and their families. Over the past years we have worked hard to improve the gardens, working with Cardiff Parks Department and the local police. This has included planting a large number of trees and spring bulbs as well as litter picks.

Our free play sessions are always popular with children especially in the Summer holidays. We offer a broad range of arts and crafts activities with lots of games too. All our play sessions are run by qualified, experienced and enthusiastic staff, they are also fully inclusive. We also organise bigger events at specific times of the year such as The Big Lunch, Playday and Halloween.

Last July, we were thrilled to be successful in being granted three years funding from BBC Children in Need to continue and develop our project. We have been busy planning lots of exciting activities for the coming months, all we need now is good weather! Hope to see you at one of our sessions soon, all dates are listed on our flyer above.

For more information and to get in touch visit our Facebook page Friends of Pentre Gardens and we are also on Twitter @PentreGdns

Joanna Chittenden, chair.

Flats plan goes ahead despite opposition

Fifty residents in the Taff Mead area of Grangetown signed a petition, opposed to a conversion of a property into a house of multiple occupation (HMO).

The end of terrace in Dinas Street is already made up of three self-contained flats and a studio flat but the owners want to convert it further - increasing the number of bedrooms from five to seven.

As well as the petition, there were also 18 objections, with claims of a loss of family housing, parking issues and "a further erosion of community spirit and cohesion". The issue has also been raised by residents at an earlier Grangetown PACT meeting.

Local resident Catherine Burnett told councillors there had been issues since the property was first converted into flats in 2004 and it had been an "eyesore" until recently, when work started on the house.

Owner Lauren Wakely said she only bought the house last August and "completely understood the concerns" of residents and had been introducing herself to people living on the street to explain her intentions and alleviate some of their concerns. "It's imperative on heritage streets like Dinas Street to keep that community feeling to keep improving the area," Ms Wakely said.

The property was being renovated because it had been in a "desperate state" when she bought it and she wanted to attract high quality, professional tenants.

Officials said there are no other similar HMOs in the immediate area and they can allow up to 10% of housing to be of this type in a Grangetown neighbourhood as part of a threshold.

Councillor Ashley Lister raised the issue of parking and said having seven residents in there would exacerbate problems in the area, while he also questioned the number of tenants being proposed for the size of the property.

He also said the register of HMOs did not reflect his own experience of coming across similar properties in the area recently, which were not listed on it.

But the council's planning committee on Thursday voted to allow it. The council will impose restrictions on the hours the building work can take place and also conditions relating to obscure glass for a window overlooking properties.

Overflowing bins are just too much

Keep Grangetown Tidy have raised the issue of overflowing bins in the area, on both streets and in parks.

The volunteer litter-picking group came across a number on their monthly event.

Councillor Lynda Thorne said: "We met with senior officers and cabinet members this week about this very issue as well as parking pressures from city Centre and Bay and special events.

"Agreed Grangetown to be a pilot reviewing both issues and solutions."

Business map takes to the streets

Grangetown's first independent business map has hit the streets, aimed at promoting some of the best of the area's best shops and services.

More than 21 local businesses signed up for the map - which is a distinctive shade of yellow, containing details of some of our best-loved and also newest local high street names and delivered in a funky and fully bilingual way.

Designed by the team behind the Get Lost In Cardiff arcades map and produced by Grangetown local business forum, the idea is to showcase the best of independent businesses - and making it available in the shops themselves so they can cross-promote each other.

Lynne Thomas, Community Gateway project manager, who has helped support the idea along with Grangetown Community Action, is pictured delivering the map to businesses in Cardiff Bay.

Rather than just producing a throw-away leaflet or flyer, the map is fold-away and can be kept in a drawer or bag. It has been given the Grangetown Shop Local branding, which has also been used in the Grangetown World Market and tote bags.

An online version of the map is being produced for download and details of the businesses are included in a directory on the website.

Cheers! The Grange is voted best city pub

The Grange pub has celebrated a successful year after its re-opening by winning the title of Cardiff's best pub.

The prestigious award for the quality of its beer was announced by the city branch of the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA).

The pub in Penarth Road - which had been shut for 18 months - was given a major refurbishment and a new lease of life by its new owners, after being bought from Brain's.

As well as a great make-over, the pub - now a free house - has also quickly won support of customers old and new with its choice of craft beers and great food.

In its first year it has employed 15 people, served over 4,000 Sunday roasts and featured some of the best brews from south and west Wales. It has also hosted popular weekly quizzes and held charity events, quickly establishing its reputation as a community local after years of the old pub being neglected and run down.

The Grange's sister pub The Lansdowne in Canton, which won the 2017 award, was runner-up. CAMRA members - who vote for the best pub after visiting dozens across the city - were presented with the award on April 12th.

Dai Dearden, manager at The Grange, said: "We are absolutely over the moon to have received recognition by CAMRA in our first year. A lot of hard work has gone into restoring The Grange and this is credit to our brilliant staff and customers.

"We want The Grange to be a family friendly, real locals’ pub which offers quality beer and food. So far, the community in Grangetown have responded really positively and we are already seeing a lot of return and loyal custom."

Brian Francis, CAMRA Cardiff said: “The Grange has been turnaround from a rundown pub with a limited selection of beers to an independent, inspired pub that champions real ales. They stood out as winners this year as this is a great achievement in just one year of business. It is clear they are keen real ale people."

Tramshed late licence allowed

Police said they have been attending in recent months at "high risk events" to prevent disorder

Tramshed is to be allowed to open until 3am for 20 events a year, despite objections from local councillors and South Wales Police.

Worries over noise and disturbance to local residents, and an increase in incidents of crime and disorder were put forward but the proposal for the late licence for limited weekend events was allowed.

The venue in Pendyris Street - ahead of a three-hour licensing committee on Friday - agreed to a meeting with residents and councillors next month to dicuss concerns.

It will be allowed to open for 20 DJ-only events - providing the bar closes at 2.30am. There are also conditions relating to police being given 21 days notice of each events and security staff having to wear eight body cameras.

Police brought video evidence alongside a list of issues they had dealt with in recent months to the committee.

It included the road having to be shut after people spilled out into the road after a gig by grime star Fredo. Other CCTV footage showed fights at two other events - including a head-butting.

Chief Inspector Joe Jones in his submission to Cardiff Council's licensing sub-committee said recently the venue has had to have more "significant police support" and attendance to prevent disorder.

"With the extension of hours, South Wales Police there will be an increase of further incidents of crime and disorder at the premises and in the immediate vicinity," he added.

He also said he believed there would be a "significant number of intoxicated customers" leaving the venue in Pendyris Street to go into the local residential area, with a likelihood of noise and disruption.

 Police said a recent event which finished after 10pm needed a temporary road closure to ensure the safety of people leaving, while they also have to collect up glass bottles left by people queuing.

Meanwhile, Councillor Ashley Lister, objecting on behalf of the three local councillors, said: "We do not feel it would be fair to expect residents to tolerate evironmental and noise pollution for 25 occasions a year until 3am when the issues are already existing at earlier closing times."

After the meeting he said: "The committee are very concerned about the impact on residents and have asked the Tramshed to do all they can to mitigate it."

Tramshed's lawyer told the committee that there had been 10 criminal incidents at the venue in the six months to the end of March - which covered 144 gigs. There had also been no issues in the 34 DJ nights so far.

"These will be different events," he said. "You might have 1,000 people through the door but you won't have 1,000 people arriving at the same time and leaving at the same time.

@grangecardiff thanks for sharing. @cardiffcouncil please don't approve this! Think about the impact upon the poor #Grangetown residents!

— Tariq Awan (@TariqAwan1757) March 26, 2018

I hope this gets rejected by councillors

— Ashley Govier (@AshleyGovier) March 26, 2018

It’s a residential area and while I love the Tramshed and think it’s great for Grangetown I don’t think 3 am close would be good for the community

— Natalie (@notaylott) March 26, 2018

Police put forward more stringent security measures they want the venue to take in a submission to the licensing sub-committee.

Tramshed director of operations Ben Newby, of operators the MJR Group, had also put forward a series of steps they would take to prevent problems, including liaison with police and councillors.

But one Taff Mead resident said: "I personally think this could negatively impact the community, particularly because of the noise caused by people leaving the Tramshed - possibly loitering in the area beyond 3am, and of course cabs picking up passengers and drivers starting their cars, slamming doors, and driving off - all at 3am!"

The venue in recent months has been promoting more DJ/club night events, not just live bands on the regular programme. Events normally finish by 11pm or 1am at weekends.

Planning go ahead for £2m Pavilion revamp

A project to transform Grange Pavilion into a community venue in a corner of Grange Gardens has been given planning permission.

It follows weeks after the Big Lottery Fund awarded £1m under its Community Asset Transfer 2 programme to go towards refurbishing and extending the current building to provide a multi-purpose facility - including café, office and meeting spaces. The money will also include funding for five years for a full-time development officer and part-time green and engagement person.

It is five years since local residents started talking about using the empty 1960s bowls pavilion as a community venue.

Since then, thanks to a tie-up with the Cardiff University Community Gateway project, the work of local people and Grangetown Community Action, the building has been given a new lease of life and a £40,000 revamp.

But the existing building is still affected by damp and poor insultation. There is hope of completely transforming the site, with a development which could cost upwards of £2m. Match funding will also needed now for the £1,072,692 award but there is hope that work can start within months.

A spokeswoman for the project, led by Community Gateway, Grange Pavilion Project and Grangetown Community Action, said: "There's still plenty of input needed from the current and future users of the pavilion as we finalise the design layouts to make sure we're planning for all imagined uses of the facility in making it a welcoming and flexible space for all, so please do get in touch or keep an eye out for calls for you to join us for detailed design workshops."

New-look Clive Lane housing development gets go ahead

A new housing development off Clive Street lane - different from the original proposals - has been given the go-ahead by councillors.

There will now be 101 homes instead of the original 116, with Pegasus Developments now including two small open spaces after talks with planning officials.

Councillors were asked to forego more than £525,000 that the developers would normally pay towards community facilities as part of the deal because the homes will now be all social housing, with none of the houses or flats sold on the open market. It was argued that the project will not be "viable" unless the usual so-called section 106 agreement is torn up, and this was backed by an independent valuation assessment.

There will be a mix of one and two bedroom flats in three-storey blocks, as well as two to four bedroom houses on the site of the old railway embankment.

The embankment before its removal

Work going on to remove the embankment

It took eight months to move 100,000 tonnes of earth and spoil which made up the banking for the disused Victorian railway line. Altogether 6,000 lorry journeys cleared the way for the development, backing onto Ikea.

The back lane and embankment have long been a hotspot for fly-tippers, as well as being home to small traders. The site will include car parking and secure cycle parking for the flats, while the access road into Clive Street will involve the demolition of a house.

Hundreds of slow worms were transplanted to Cosmeston Lakes before any work began. But the council's ecology officer still wants to see wildflower areas and shrubs as part of the landscaping, to improve the green corridor in the area. Improved crossing points for pedestrians are also suggested.

The developers would normally be expected to make a contribution towards school places and local community and open space provisions. The so-called section 106 agreement would be worth around £525,000; this was calculated down from just over £916,000 originally.

But councillors were told because the proposal was now for "much needed affordable homes, including family housing" the project would be unviable if the developer had to make any contribution. The planning committee was told it would be a "benefit for the city" and councillors welcomed the fact it would mean 100% social housing, as they backed it unanimously.

"There is therefore a decision to be made between approving a much needed affordable housing development of 101 dwellings...or requiring that the agreed obligations be met, which would jeopardise the delivery of the development," says a report to the planning committee.

Officials say they are happy the housing is arranged to provide privacy  and the design "is considered to be acceptable and will result in an attractive and pleasant living environment."  

Brewery site transformation is not small beer

Artist impression of the site.

Details of a multi-million pound office, housing and leisure development across the river from Grangetown have been given the go ahead.

The Central Quay development would completely transform the site of Brain's brewery, which is moving across the city.

The old brewery building and distinctive chimney stack are staying as a centre-piece of the designs, which also promises a huge central water feature, and altogether at 2.5m square feet claims to be one of the UK's largest schemes.

Paul McCarthy, Rightacres chief executive said it would become "Cardiff’s focal gathering place for businesses and visitors with live music, a wide choice of bars and restaurants and a calendar of events such as food and beer festivals."

Offices in the Ledger building would include a ground floor called The Market Place, an indoor hall to showcase Welsh food and drink.

Inevitably, questions are already being asked about the potential impact of traffic on already congested local roads and whether public transport and sustainable alternatives will be be up to scratch and ready in time.

There was also scepicism whether more homes were needed and about the character of the buildings planned.

A 650-space multi-storey carpark and Metro stop are also included, alongside a new coach station at the back of the existing railway station.

Generic, bland and loses the Brains chimney completely in a sea of glass and metal. There must be more inspiring designs, surely.

— Emma Harris (@MissEmmaHarris) February 21, 2018

Dim diolch. Fi’n cerdded ar hyd yr afon pob dydd ac mae fflatiau uchel moethus yn hollol gwrthwyneb I gymeriad Grangetown.

— Catrin Jones (@CatrinJ03161598) February 21, 2018

I’ve often thought that the one thing the Bay area needs is more definitely-not-vacant apartment blocks.

— Jaymie Thomas (@jaymiethomas) February 21, 2018

As a Grangetown resident living on the other side of River Taff embankment of #brains development my main concern is additional traffic to our already connected roads it will bring. Anyone thought of this? ??

— Tariq Awan (@TariqAwan1757) February 23, 2018

My 5 year old has asked 'Pam?'
I have to agree with her. It's not particularly exciting or pleasing to the eye.

— Carys (@carys13) February 21, 2018

I hope they keep as much of the old buildings as possible. Too many lost, such as the recent and nearbye Brickworks site. This project knocked down some charachter buildings for new shiny appartments.

— mandy attwell (@MandyAttwell) February 21, 2018

The plans - passed in July - involve 1,000 apartments and 50 restaurants and bars, as well as college facilities.

Mr McCarthy said they had taken on board reaction from local people.

"Overall the feedback from local businesses and residents was hugely positive," he said. "Understandably, some residents were concerned about the environmental impact a development of this scale can have and as a result, we will be setting ourselves ambitious sustainability targets including minimising the materials taken to landfill sites and maximising the recycling opportunities."

The first phase is aimed to be ready by the summer of 2020.

£1m lottery award for 'dynamic' Pavilion revamp

A project to transform Grangetown Pavilion into a community venue in a corner of Grange Gardens has been awarded £1m in lottery funding.

The money from the Big Lottery Fund's Community Asset Transfer 2 programme will go towards refurbishing and extending the current building to provide a multi-purpose facility - including café, office and meeting spaces. The money will also include funding for five years for a full-time development officer and part-time green and engagement person.

It is five years since local residents started talking about using the empty 1960s bowls pavilion as a community venue.

Since then, thanks to a tie-up with the Cardiff University Community Gateway project, the work of local people and Grangetown Community Action, the building has been given a new lease of life and a £40,000 revamp.

But the existing building is still affected by damp and poor insultation. There is hope of completely transforming the site, with a development which could cost upwards of £2m. Plans have already gone forward to Cardiff Council and now the first major funding hurdle has been overcome. Match funding will also needed now for the £1,072,692 award.

Lynne Thomas, project manager for Community Gateway, Cardiff University's engagement programme, said: "We are delighted to have received this grant, which is the culmination of much hard work from everyone involved. The funding will be used to further develop Grange Pavilion into a high quality, dynamic venue that can be used by people of all ages."

Partners in the project include residents' organisations themselves - Grange Pavilion Project (GPP), Grangetown Community Action (GCA), Grange Pavilion CIO - as well as Cardiff Council, owners of the old bowls pavilion and site.

The plans will first involve developing a new building alongside the existing pavilion, with the intention that the latter will be then either revamped or rebuilt when the initial phase has been completed, so there is a continuity and the cafe can stay operating throughout. Work is expected to start within the next few months. It has been developed with IBI Group and Dan Benham Architect, and involved consultations by students at the Welsh School of Architecture.

Ms Thomas added: "It will transform the building into a thriving centre that will benefit the people of Grangetown for many years to come. Hundreds of people have helped us get to this exciting point and we are thrilled to be able to move forward with our plans thanks to this grant."

Residents have been involved in the discussions about the designs, thanks to virtual reality technology presentations at drop-in sessions.

Councillor Ashley Lister, chair of Grangetown Community Action, said: "As a lead in Grange Pavilion, GCA is delighted with this news. We are grateful for the enormous amount of time and effort that has already gone into re-engaging the community with this popular venue.

"We would never have reached this stage without the support of the numerous volunteers who have given up their time. The Big Lottery Funding now that means that we can deliver something the community can be proud of. Our next steps will be to obtain additional match funding which will enable us to build a fully-functional community asset with on-site cafe, meeting facilities, and flourishing green space." The plans include:

 Big Lottery Fund Wales director John Rose, said the programme - which has awarded £5.4m across five projects in Wales on Thursday - was about empowering communities across Wales "to use buildings and land to suit their needs."

It would be helping groups with asset transfer projects and "improving services and facilities for communities in Wales that are sustainable."

Other projects benefiting include turning a 1920's Machine Shop at the Brymbo Steelworks site into a heritage learning centre and £1.1m towards a tourism and community facility in Llandeilo Shire Hall.

Mhairi McVicar, project lead for Community Gateway, said: “If successful, a community management board, which has started to form, will take on a 99 year lease under a community asset transfer [from Cardiff Council], with handover support from Cardiff University. “We still need your help, and the project is still very much open to anyone who would like to get involved.”

The Hideout Cafe opened in the existing pavilion last summer, offering cake, ice creams and coffee, as well as training opportunities for local youngsters. The kitchen had been refurbished with the help of Ikea.

In addition to hosting regular classes and community organisations, there are hopes of expanding its range of regular events, including a creative writing group. Recently a monthly repair cafe began. There is also potential for music, comedy and other small-scale performance. Meanwhile, the pavilion project is still looking for expertise and volunteers who can help with facilities management, landscaping, business development, legal services, finances, fund-raising, PR and marketing, as well those happy helping at pop-up events and activities. Trustees will be appointed.

The Pavilion project has already had support from Cardiff Bay Rotary Club, Ikea, Cardiff and Vale College and Cardiff Council’s neighbourhood partnership. Other partners include Garfield Weston Foundation and Cardiff and Vale College Jemma White, of the Pavilion trustrees group, said: “We are very excited to see the plans for Grange Pavilion move forward.

Not only will an upgraded Pavilion provide space for community activities for residents, it will help build a united, welcoming and resilient community, making Grangetown an even better place to live and work.”

The design statement adds that the proposal wants to "encourage and create a thriving core community hub" that is open and caters for all members of the community.

Repair cafe is on hand to help

If you're in a fix - and have something which needs mending - a monthly repair cafe has started in Grangetown.

Grangetown Repair Cafe will be meeting on the last Sunday of each month (the next one is February 25th, 12pm-4pm) at The Hideout Cafe in the Grange Pavilion in Grange Gardens.

Volunteers will try to fix things that you would otherwise throw away. This could include broken electricals, torn clothing, broken jewellery, wobbly tables, slow computers and so on.

The first was hailed as a big success with 37 items brought along. Among those helping was computer repair specialists PC Express.

"We'll try to fix anything," said Joe O'Mahoney, who is one of those behind Cardiff Repair Cafe, which started in Cathays last year. "We can't do major repairs or alterations on clothes, but will do a free MOT on your bike."

To make it work, volunteers who are handy (e.g. electrics, IT, woodwork, or generalists) or simply want to get involved in helping, are also needed. Contact: Moss 07907489346 or Joe 07868206627 if you can lend a hand.

The idea started in Amsterdam and aims to encourage recycling and up-cycling - stopping stuff being dumped that could have a longer life.

There is no charge for the repairs but people are asked to make a contribution towards the project - and you can also buy coffee, tea and cake at the cafe while you wait.

Eventually, 130 new trees will be planted. Photo: NRW

Boxing club gets go ahead for permanent home

A new permanent home for the Prince of Wales boxing club is being planned near Channel View.

The club has been looking to secure its own gym for several years - and now plans for a purpose-built facility have gone forward to Cardiff Council and have been given the go ahead under delegated powers.

It will include a 16ft boxing ring and a classroom and be built on a disused area between the leisure centre and nursery school. 

The club has members of all ages, from children to seniors in boxing, and others use it for keep fit and boxer-cise, from Grangetown and surrounding areas.

"At the moment we are having a season out to concentrate on the future of the club and the building process," said head coach Joe Feal.

"We were decanted from our original home six years ago - which we had used since 1969 - and then we had a temporary base at the Grangetown Boys and Girls Club. We then had to vacate these premises.

"We now have the breakthrough we needed to secure our own gym which have been looking for, for a very long time."

The club hopes to be up and running within a year, in good time for its 50th anniversary.

The new gym would be on a 50-year lease from Cardiff Council. 

The classroom would be available for Grangetown Nursery School as a meeting or training room, as well as for community use. 

The Prince of Wales ABC's long history includes Welsh champions and Commonwealth Games medallists.

Litter-picking library loan idea

As focus group highlights litter as biggest community issue

Keep Grangetown Tidy already holds monthly organised litter picks but this will enable residents to pick their own time to help.

Grangetown residents will be able to borrow litter-pickers from their local library - in a bid to get more volunteers to help tidy up in the area.

Litter pickers, bags, gloves and hi-vis tabards will be available to litter champions to pick up from Grangetown Hub whenever they want - and to borrow up for up to two weeks - in the Love Where I Live scheme being launched on Wednesday.

Volunteers will be given initial training - and then given a library card which will allow them to pick up the equipment. A log sheet will allow them to record their litter picks, with bags being left next to litter bins for council waste collectors to pick up afterwards.

Councillor Michael Michael, cabinet member for clean streets and recycling, said: "The Keep Grangetown Tidy group has been working hard with the council for some time.

"The idea of this new initiative is to provide the equipment directly to the volunteers so they are able to arrange their community litter picks when it is convenient for them."

Mr Michael said all they asked was for volunteers to report hazardous materials such as broken glass, needles, dog fouling or fly-tipping and not to try to attempt to collect these items.

"If the initiative is successful, we will look to expand the scheme to different areas of the city in the New Year," he said.

The event was being launched with a litter pick on Wednesday at 10am. Residents that would like to get involved are asked to

The focus group findings were presented in community safety week in October.

Meanwhile, litter problems were the top complaint of residents who took part in a 13-strong focus group set up by Grangetown youngsters to help set community police priorities in the area.

Residents’ ideas to create safer communities were collected as part of Grangetown Youth Forum's data gathering exercise with the Crime and Security Research Institute at Cardiff University.

The findings were presented at the start of Grangetown's third community safety week on Monday and have been possible thanks to the data research tool Sensor, which helps to target neighbour security issues.

Most people questioned were from the Ferry Road, Clydach Street or Holmesdale Street areas. The group reported that most people felt either safe or slightly unsafe. When a mapping exercise took place, litter emerged as the top problem. Road safety and parking were also significant issues.

Litter was found in all three locations, together with dog mess, broken glass and fly-tipping. One resident taking part said there were "not enough bins, bins not big enough and not emptied enough. Litter everywhere. Shops don't keep their outside clean. People fly tip on any available space. Car drivers [have a] culture of throwing litter from their cars, also when they clean cars, leave rubbish at kerb".

The research will also be presented at the next Grangetown PACT meeting on November 7th.

The young Sensor champions aim to work with residents to agree community safety ideas that can be brought in locally, with the help of South Wales Police and Cardiff Council.

One of the young people involved, Saeed Ahmed, 17, said: "I live in Grangetown and this piece of work will be good to help keep us even more safe and secure by improving policing priorities."

Rosie Cripps, Community Gateway project manager said the work with the youth forum looked for "solutions to make Grangetown an even safer place to live and work."

Some of the partners involved in Safety Week

The safety week which runs until Friday involves road safety, youth safety and is again part of the university's ongoing Community Gateway programme in the area.

Activities include water safety talks for young people, youth engagement and free cycle safety checks. Cyclists can also benefit from useful items donated by Halfords.

In addition, there will be a talk about substance misuse from Switched On, a multi-agency team which educates children, young people and practitioners about drug and alcohol issues throughout Cardiff and the Vale. On Tuesday, nine people signed up for free first aid training by St John.

Councillor Ashley Lister, chair of Grangetown Community Action, said: “This year we will be building on our previous successes by delivering more first aid training and home safety checks, as well as information sessions with primary school pupils. I'd like to take the opportunity to thank all our partners in Cardiff Council, emergency services and third sector for their ongoing support in helping to make Grangetown a more safer and cohesive community.“

There are more details in the events section above.

Grangetown cricketer joins Young England tour

Prem and his parents meet Vaughan Gething AM. With Cardiff CCC coach Kevin Lyons.

Promising Grangetown cricketer Prem Sisodiya joined up with the England Under 19 squad to tour South Africa in November and also played in the Under 19 World Cup in New Zealand in January.

The left-arm spinner and batsman has been a regular with Cardiff Cricket Club, who have taken the South Wales Premier title and Welsh Cup twice in recent seasons, and is a Glamorgan develoment player, where he was Academy Player of the Year last season.

Prem, who lives in north Grangetown, said: "Cricket has been a really big part of my life from a young age.”

He is a former pupil at two schools known for their sporting excellence - Whitchurch High School and Clifton College and has been playing for Cardiff since the age of nine.

Cardiff club coach Kevin Lyons said: "He has worked methodically for 10 years, and been a credit to family and Cardiff CC plus all the teams in which he has played. South Africa shall be a real experience and learning process for him and may he continue to improve his all round game and remember why he first started out all those years ago, to enjoy the game."

Keen cricket fan and Cardiff South and Penarth AM Vaughan Gething welcomed Prem and his parents Pab and Lux to a reception at the Assembly to wish him well in the autumn. "As a former amateur cricketer and current cricket fan myself, I have a particular appreciation for his outstanding achievements," said Mr Gething. "He is a credit to Grangetown and Cardiff. I look forward to watching his cricketing career develop in the coming years”.

The winter tour involved a Tri-Series against South Africa and Namibia.

Flats plans rejected again

Artist impression of what the development would look like from Clive Street.

Plans to build flats on the site of a bed warehouse in Grangetown - which have been either refused or withdrawn four times in the last 12 years - have been rejected again.

Councillors had been recommended to turn down the latest proposals - just over a year after an appeal against the refusal of the previous plan was rejected.

The development put forward was for 18 mostly one-bedroom flats built on the junction with Ferry Road and South Clive Street. A auto body parts workshop next door was again one of the objectors to the plans for the Windor Buildings.

Officials say it would mean "poor quality of living environment" and "outlook" and lack of space at the front and privacy for new residents moving into the social housing complex. There are also concerns over three lime trees, which would overhang the three-storey flats.

Councillor Frank Jacobsen on the planning committee said the only thing going for it was it was close to Ikea for people carrying furniture back; but Councillor Iona Gordon called the architect's plan "commendable" for a "virtually impossible site". But others said it would cram too many flats into a small space with concern about dark corridors into the flats and privacy issues for the resident in the ground floor flat. Councillor Michael Jones-Pritchard said: "Affordable housing occupants need just as good accommodation, amenity space and suroundings as people who buy their own."

The plans came from a Cardiff property developer but Taff Housing was understood to be standing by if the development got the go ahead. The developer says it would contribute "to the provision of high-quality affordable housing" and a "high quality living environment".

Local residents also objected to the plans which went before the city's planning committee. One commented: "It appears that no material changes to this application have been made, and I am starting to find the repeated submission of the same plans vexatious to say the least."

Tariq joins Cricket Wales board to help encourage diversity

Grangetown resident, former councillor and cricket fan Tariq Awan has become the first Asian to be elected onto the board of Cricket Wales.

Mr Awan has been presented with an appreciation award by Cardiff Central Cricket Club - the club which he helped set up - in recognition of the achievement and his commitment to sharing his skills and expertise.

He will serve as an independent director for the next three years and help the organisation reach out to diverse sections of Welsh communities. The award was presented by Cricket Wales chief executive Peter Hybart.

Sohail Rauf, chairman of Cardiff Central CC added that as a club "we are very proud at the successful appointment" of Mr Awan to Cricket Wales's board and wished him all the best in his new role. Other VIP guests included Councillors Ashley Lister and Dilwar Ali.

It was part of an end of season presentation night for Cardiff Central Cricket Club (formerly called Welsh Asian CC). It was founded in 1984 by players from Grangetown, Riverside and Canton. Mr Awan, the club’s development officer, explained that from its humble beginning with two teams the Cardiff Central CC has now transformed into three senior teams and four junior teams.

Junior team members at the presentation night.

Two female volunteers have completed training as coaches and the club is now well on its way to introducing its first girls team to cater for the growing demand and promote recreational cricket among the younger female population.

Mr Awan said that two players, who started their cricket with Cardiff Central CC, are now part of the Glamorgan's cricket academy. He said the club was "well known and respected by Cricket Wales and Glamorgan County CC".

Temple celebrates 35 years

The temple was lit up, while a firework display concluded the celebrations on Wednesday evening. Photo: Grangetown Plaid.

Grangetown's Hindu community has been celebrating the 35th anniversary of its temple in Merches Gardens.

The Shree Swaminarayan temple was opened in 1982, the first of its kind in Wales, and has been the focal point for spiritual, cultural and social activities for different generations since.

The celebrations also marked 10 years of the Central Shrine. An assembly was held with guests including local MP Stephen Doughty, local councillors, members of other political parties and other organisations, including police and emergency services.

A traditional Indian street food festival and fantastic firework display followed on Wednesday evening.

On Saturday, a Hindu Mela took place at the Swalec Stadium.

On-fire Dragons storm to title

The Bay Dragons cricket team - which features a large number of Grangetown players - has won its division in its first season in the South East Wales Cricket League.

Playing home matches at Blackweir, the Dragons topped Division Nine with six wins and only two defeats. A six-wicket loss at Mountain Ash 2nds was not enough to deny them the title on the final day.

Chairman and captain Syed Abbas said there were plans to run a second XI next season - and a local fitness project.

Syed said: "Following the success this year, the club is starting a community project aimed at creating sports opportunities for Grangetown residents. We call it, “Get Fit – Play Cricket”.

"Due to our growth plans, we are looking to create a 2nd XI team as well as create a youth infrastructure, so there will be plenty of opportunities for anyone who fancies playing.  We are also looking for volunteers, who just want to come and watch cricket  or help out with scoring, umpiring, match day support.

We can arrange free of cost training for them as well."

The Dragons also thanked their supporters, Grangetown News and sponsors Hussain Jewellers of Clare Road.

Oldest Grangetown resident dies, aged 103

Mary at her 100th birthday party.

Probably Grangetown's oldest resident has died peacefully at home, just a week before her 104th birthday.

Mary Desmond was a mother of 11 and a number of her children lived near her in the Merches Gardens area.

Mary with husband Charles in the 1930s and aged 99 at a family wedding.

She was born Mary Barry at 38 Chester Street in August 1913, one of 15 children. George V was king, Asquith was prime minister, it was a year before World War One and the height of the Suffragete movement. Mary went to St Patrick's School, which she left to look after her grandmother.

Mary, who also lived in Clare Road for a time, married her husband Charles Desmond in 1936.

The couple ran the Public Works Department Club in Mardy Street - later the Irish club and now the Samaj Centre - for more than 30 years. It used to attract people from all over Cardiff for dances.

Mary - who was interviewed before her 100th birthday by Grangetown Local History Society - also did bar work which she recalled as enjoying very much even though she did not drink alcohol. Mary also worked at Curran's amunitions factory near the docks, testing shells during World War Two. 

She had 11 children in 11 years but sadly lost her son David aged 23 in a hit-and-run road tragedy at the Clare Road lights in 1973 while Charles died a few months later.

Mary was a staunch member of St Patrick's Church congregation, attending Mass regularly, and had also been a cleaner at Ninian Park School.

Her grand-daughter Lisa said: "Nan had a huge family - 11 children, 24 grand children 42 great grandchildren and a number of great-greats. With such a big family and her work at the PWD she was known by a great many people from all over Cardiff." 

"St Patrick's was her church from the day it was built, receiving sacrament until the end of her long life. She was a pillar of the community, the church and her family." 

Mary (left) with Rita Spinola, who recorded her memories for the Grangetown Local History Society's oral archive, just before her 100th birthday.

Mary pictured with her surviving children.

Tramshed plans four-storey flats and office block

Plans for offices and 19 apartments have been put forward by The Tramshed developers.

The block - four-storeys at its highest point - would be built on land immediately behind the existing venue off Clare Road.

The design is by Ellis Williams Architects, who were behind the original refurbishment. It would be developed so the ground floor would include an access tunnel for the venue and for the lane along the rear of the Tramshed.

The apartments on the upper floors would be "live-work" units; the same concept that already operates in the main building. The first floor would be office space for small businesses.

.No parking provision is provided and the transport plan assumes most people using the offices will use public transport or walk, while those visiting can use the pay-and-display in Pendyris Street.

It will come as a surprise to local residents, with no mention of this phase of the development coming up during consultation during the original development over 2014/15.

The idea however has been an open secret for months, certainly since the official opening of the building last year.

Because the facade of the Tramshed is Grade II listed, the architects say they have been at pains to come up with the design that is sensitive - and the building - which would back onto the exisiting building - would be a feature in its own right. "The final proposals will be developed with a separate and distinct architectural language, so as not to dilute or mimic the Tramshed, but so that the new building is read separately in it’s own right," they say in the design statement.

The building will be part part four storeys, with the height thought "appropriate" as it is along the railway line and close to buildings like the Unity student flats.

The biggest concern for neighbouring residents is likely to be parking pressures, given the lack of provision in the development and already the squeeze from commuter parking from the "creeping" city centre. One Court Road resident complained to us already this week about issues and dissatisfaction with the levels of residents' permit parking available.

The Tramshed development has been evolving. The venue has been a success over more than 18 months and residents have been won over how well run it is. The cafe-bar has just re-launched its menu again and the cinema has been open since Christmas. Tramshed Tech at the far end has been another success as a "plug-in" business space. This weekend, the dance/yoga/fitness studio in the middle is due to open its doors.

But this is for an additional building, not a refurbishment of an existing, empty one, so the local reaction is uncertain.

The plans for this latest phase have gone to Cardiff Council and will be open for comments.

'Selfless servant' gets community award

Halimah Islam, who has been running a homework club for local children for the last 19 years, has been given the annual Joan Gallagher memorial award for her contribution to the local community.

Mrs Islam has been running the Saturday elementary school called Al-islah (meaning "guidance") for three hours per week as a volunteer. It started in portable buildings before moving to Channel View and more recently has been operating from the Grange Pavilion.

The idea behind the club was to build up the confidence of local BME community children offering them cultural studies through the medium of arts, crafts, books and social interaction in informal class settings.

As it progressed, Al-Islah organisers realised that children also needed assistance to improve their basic literacy and numeracy skills to catch up with national standards, so additional volunteers were recruited to offer children the support they needed.

At its peak, up to 85 children have attended.

The nomination for the award called her a "true community champion," who had "selflessly served" Grangetown. It added: "Mrs Islam has been an incredible asset and a symbol of inspiration for the women of the BME community who are often very difficult to engage with. She has been offering her time, skills, dedication and often paying money from her own pocket to purchase the learning materials, when certain parents find it difficult to pay the minimal fee. She has taught and inspired all my three children to gain the cultural awareness and the confidence to do well at school."

The award was presented at Grangetown Festival by Cardiff South and Penarth AM Vaughan Gething to Mrs Islam, accompanied by her sister, who also helps with the club.

It is made annually in memory of Joan Gallagher MBE, who served the local community for many decades, including as secretary of Grangetown Community Concern, the local Scouts and as a councillor.

End of long saga for school campaigners and church

Campaigners for a Welsh-medium primary school and those looking to preserve St Paul's Church are celebrating major planning landmarks.

The long-awaited new Ysgol Hamadryad will provide a first Welsh-medium school for pupils from Grangetown and Butetown.

The first intake of pupils is currently being taught in a starter class on the site of Ninian Park school. The new build behind the old Hamadryad Hospital, just over the Taff in Butetown, will take a year to build and be ready in time for the start of the school year in 2018.

Central to the application is a travel plan to encourage as many pupils, parents and staff to get to school by public transport, walking or bike. There is also £300,000 set aside for improving local junctions, crossings and for residents' parking.

The proposals include: