Big Sweeps across Pontcanna

Thanks to everyone who took part in #TheBigSweep in November and December.

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It started with a notice pinned to a tree on Severn Grove ‘Shame on Cardiff Council for ignoring their road sweeping duties,’ and ended with 75 people cleaning the street one week later.

Cardiff residents in the leafy suburb of Pontcanna have been working with the council to make their streets safer. On November 21, 75 people, including residents, shops and Coop Pontcanna, took part in the first ‘The Big Sweep’. Co-organised by Fran O’Hara of @pontcannahub and labour councillor Caro Wild, Severn Grove, Conway, Llanfair and Turberville Road was swept, leaves bagged, and the bags then picked up by council trucks and cleaned the streets. The event was shared on twitter as #thebigsweep and now more streets have been inspired to sweep up too, a great example of the community working with the council…

  • 21 November – Severn Grove and Llanfair Road
  • 28 November – Plasturton Gardens, Place, Avenue & Pontcanna Street
  • 5 December – All of Conway Road, Pitman and Talbot Street

How it happened…
CTS-tE_W4AADs9xFran O’Hara saw a piece of paper pinned to a tree on Severn Grove saying ‘Shame on you Cardiff Council’ which she tweeted at @PontcannaHub, several people said they would be interested in cleaning the streets. She asked Caro, who met with the council the next day at 8.30am. They agreed to provide bags, trucks and street cleaners. Fran created a poster, tweeted it, put it in the Coop, @paul_seaman printed and put leaflets through 60 doors. After the first Big Sweep other streets contacted Caro Wild and Iona Gordon who co-ordinated more. The Coop Pontcanna team, New Conwy and Beverley supported the Big Sweep by supplying hot coffee and refreshments.

“These services have had cuts so we decided to do something about the streets, they had become dangerous for us to walk on, and even worse for the elderly’. It was great to see so many people come onto the street and clear up, making new friends and safer place to walk. So many people came up to us while we were sweeping, telling us stories of falling over, and not letting their kids use scooters because the pavements were so dangerous with the compacted leaves.”
Fran, Severn Grove resident, ‘The Big Sweep’ co-organiser

“It’s nice now that we don’t have to wear wellies to walk to our car! A great turnout and people are very happy to do it again”
Paul, Severn Grove resident

“How lovely it is to meet your neighbours, a nice morning to get together and clean the streets.”
James, Severn Grove resident

“A brilliant idea – I was out there with my broom.”
Flip Severn Grove resident

“We were very happy to help to clean up the streets and make it safer for everyone to walk”
Simon Allen-Ridge, Manager Coop Pontcanna

“Lots of local enthusiasm from Severn Grove for organising ’The Big Sweep’. Great to see so many residents working together to improve their community with the council supporting.”
Caro Wilde, Labour Councillor for Riverside

The Big Picnic was BIG!

bp8Thank you to everyone who made the Big Picnic a huge success! More than 1,000 people joined the Llandaff Fields People’s Hub team on September 1 for ‘The Big Picnic’ on Llandaf Fields – making the most of the sunshine on the last day of the summer holidays.

Children flocked to the climbing wall and British Military Fitness’ junior assault course, while grown-ups-ups took part in drumming sessions, Tai Chi, Ultimate Bounce dance classes, pilates, yoga and tennis and visited the many stands. The Tug of War trophy was claimed by the Mochyn Du team, with the New Conway taking second prize.

Llandaff Fields People’s Hub was formed to protect Llandaf Fields from development and commercialisation. A public meeting held on June 4, and attended by 150 people, established that park users want no further development of green space.The LF People’s Hub aims to raise money to replace the run-down changing rooms on the Fields with a low-impact, sedum-roofed, single storey structure appropriate to a listed parkland setting.

“Economic cuts are threatening councils’ ability to maintain green spaces so, as park users, we have come together to forestall any transfer of public assets into private hands. We wish to avoid commercialisation and development on our priceless green spaces, and to protect and enhance them for future generations to enjoy as we do now. The Big Picnic, despite the fun and games, has a serious message about the loss of public green space.  Maps show that more than a third of our central parkland has been lost since the 1940s and much of that erosion is recent. The destruction of parkland has to stop.” explains Mike Chubb.

One of the main reasons for having the Big Picnic was to update people on the plans and to ask people if they would like to join the Llandaff Fields Peoples Hub mailing list, we can then keep you informed about future events and also updates on any plans. If you would like to join please emaipeoplespark@outlook.com

The Big Picnic was supported by many business close to the Fields including Chris John, Hern & Crabtree, Jeff Hopkins, Café Castan, Allen & Harris, Bute Parks Alliance, Belle Toujours and the Cooperative. Thanks to everyone who volunteered and helped run the event, including picking up the litter, hardly any!

For further information please email peoplespark@outlook.com Press information: Nerys Lloyd-Pierce – 07701 007 128.

Pictures show: 1. Mabli Phillips 5 from Cathays with Mum and Dad – Katherine and Tomos, and brother Osian 1 2. Nanw Jones 6, from Victoria Park on the climbing wall. 3. Tug of War trophy winners – the Mochyn Du pub in Sophia Gardens

Come to ‘The Big Picnic’ Llandaff Fields, on Sunday 1 September

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THE BIG PICNIC / Y PICNIC MAWR
On Sunday 1 September, from 12pm to 5pm, the Llandaff Fields People’s Hub committee are organising a BIG PICNIC in Llandaff Fields. This is going to be a FABULOUS community event and the organisers would like to get over 1000 people – they need you to come along to make it happen!
There will be lots of children’s activities and many for adults too, plus great music. Tell your family and friends and come along to celebrate our wonderful people’s park. If you wish to print out or share information about the event please click on: Big Picnic Poster and Why BIg Picnic? Info Leaflet red words to download pdf files.
For more information or to get involved please email: peoplespark@outlook.com
THE BIG PICNIC STORY

FROM MIKE CHUBB/people’s park via LINKEDIN

“Cardiff Council, given their ongoing financial crisis, are now to hive off as many of their non statutory services as they can. This includes Llandaff Fields in Pontcanna. A voluntary committee representing over 150+ local people (see read our Llandaff Fields Protest meeting post) have been tasked to develop existing facilities in Llandaff Fields, as the Council are to hive off this responsibility due to budget cuts. We, the Committee, are determined to keep the fields in public hands… there is an an offer from a private sector group that include amongst others: a road, a large car park and a private members’ bar and removing the tennis courts… Which we feel is both inappropriate to the setting but also against the intent of the gift to Cardiff of the fields.”

To raise the profile of our aim, we are undertaking an event on Sunday 1 September in Llandaff Fields, 12.00 to 5.00pm The idea behind The Big Picnic is to create a day of activity free for the community. We invite you to the biggest picnic in Cardiff (bring your own by the way!) and to ask if there might be any sponsors out there who would like to support our cause.

Layout 1People’s Park would like to thank their sponsors for their valuable support, and Andy Dark for his generous voluntary time in producing the poster:

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WOULD YOU BE ABLE TO HELP ON THE DAY?
They are looking for help with:
                          –  setting up 10 am  – 12 noon
                          –  packing up 5 – 6 pm
                          –  stewarding 12 noon – 2.30 pm
                          –  stewarding  2.30 – 5.00 pm   
                          –  assistance with the tug of war 2 – 3 pm 
                          –  staffing the Peoples’ Hub information tent
Please can you email Iona Gordon if you can at: iona.gordon@cardiff.gov.uk Then will then draw up some rotas and arrange a briefing meeting for everyone who has volunteered.