Big Sweeps across Pontcanna

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


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

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

Layout 1
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:

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:

logos horzon

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: Then will then draw up some rotas and arrange a briefing meeting for everyone who has volunteered. 

Council recommend rejecting developer’s supermarket plans!


Great news yesterday that Cardiff Council have AGAIN recommended rejecting the developer’s proposed supermarket plans for the Pontcanna Pine / Dairy site on Kings Road. Huge thanks to everyone who wrote letters/emails, signed petitions, tweeted, came to the meetings and contributed to the campaign… Proof that community action does work. 

To read the council report in more detail please download this council document and read from page 65 (pdf page 72).

We would still like people to attend the planning meeting, as it’s not a guaranteed that the application won’t be approved, and its likely the developer will appeal. The application going to Planning Committee on Wednesday 5th December. they will meet at 2.30pm in the Ferrrier Hall at City Hall.

And here are some more Pontcanna updates:

Pontcanna Art Fair
Pontcanna Hub’s own Felicity Auden is taking part in the Pontcanna Arts Fair on Sunday 2 December from 2-5pm at St Catherine’s Church Hall, Kings Road. Free entry, some lovely art and ideal Christmas gifts, with art and music activities too – and of course mulled wine and minced pies to get you into the Christmas spirit.

SUBURBAN DISCOsuburbandiscoYes its that time again, Pontcanna Hub are keen supporters of the Suburban Disco, this time its a Christmas special with free glass of Christmas Punch and cake – plus the usual groovy 70’s and 80’s toons and disco dancing – a great place to get a gang of mates and bop til you drop!

Tickets are selling fast, for more info and to send him your disco dance requests please  contact Steve Biddlecombe: or visit the Christmas Suburban Disco facebook page.

They’re back… Co-op Supermarket Planned for Pontcanna Pine site


This gallery contains 11 photos.

As anticipated, despite having their proposals recommended for rejection last time and OVERWHELMING PUBLIC CRITICISM OF THE PLANS the developers have DISREGARDED LOCALS’ CONCERNS and resubmitted plans for a supermarket on the Pontcanna Pine/Dairy site. Please attend the meeting to … Continue reading

Something N-ice(-cream) happening at Pontcanna Pine/Dairy?

For a few months the Pontcanna Pine/Dairy has been used by a family run business. Very appropriate use of space, minimal traffic and disruption on the roads and very friendly people. Things were lookin’ good til the developer told us that it was “Just for the summer”… and that he had “lots of shops interested in the site.”

The last two planning applications have been made just before major holidays so we are expecting the next one to come at a similar time. Until then – happy summer days!

Maltings Dev back on – Canton Councillors all objecting…

“Hey Maltings is back in. Comments in by 21st June. Canton Councillors all objecting. Still way too dense, too many dwellings, not enough parking. Taff don’t even own the site! Any help you can give spreading the word. Thanks.”


Click here to view the Planning Application on the Council website
Make your views heard and send comments in – individual letters count.

Suburban Disco returns for more groovy toons…

Been sent the flyer for a Suburban disco night happening from 7.30pm, at Llandaff Rugby Club on Friday June 22nd… We went to the last one at Penhill Bowls Club and this one promises to be just as groove-tastic! Tickets from Steven Biddlecombe, email or you can visit the Suburban Disco Facebook Page.

Democracy in Action in Wales – Photography Competition

We’ve received an email from is Helia Phoenix, the web editor at Assembly Communications, National Assembly for Wales – writing on behalf of a Welsh photography competition called Democracy in Action in Wales. They are trying to raise awareness of the competition and encourage people to enter. It’s free, and there are photography courses and two digital cameras to be won. The website for the competition is here:, and we’re also on Twitter @diaiw2012

They’re really interested in getting people to submit images that draw attention to issues, and considering that the Pontcanna Hub site was inspired by those planning applications, They wondered if anyone had any images they wanted to submit? We’ve attached flyers for the competition. You can see the entries so far in their Flickr group

Surprise! Officials take proposal off agenda: Today’s Council Meeting Update

20.29pm Wednesday 8 February Update:

We went, we heard the council official read out the statement shown below in italics, and our proposal was taken off the agenda for today, then a large group of people got up from their seats and walked out in a dignified manner… visibly protesting quietly with our feet.

Thanks to everyone who came – what a great warm supportive community we have. At the moment we anticipate that the proposal will come before the
planning meeting on Wednesday March 7 at 2.30pm – please put it in your diaries and watch this space…
And as the sign on the photo above says: ‘SUPPORT LOCAL BUSINESSES NOT SUPERMARKETS!’


10.13am Wednesday 8 February Update:
We have now been told that the Pontcanna Pine/Dairy proposal IS on the planning committee agenda for today BUT Cardiff Council Transportation are going to request the committee for extra time to consider new evidence put in by the developer’s regarding the transport issues, on which the ground for refusing the planning application rest.

It is most likely the Planning Committee will agree to the officer’s request as if they do not the developer’s would argue that it was not a fair debate. So it is most unlikely that the planning application will be decided today. We are going and if you are willing and able to attend then we would like you to – if you want to show your opposition, you never know what may happen. Please make a date in your diary for the next Planning Committee which is Wednesday March 8th where it will probably be decided, unless the developer withdraws it, or submits more information.

Here is the late representations notice and the request from The Operational Manager, Transportation, page 7 Planin_F_12_02_08_A_Rep_B:

“Notwithstanding previous emails from Transportation in respect of the above, I am of the opinion that further discussion with the agent and traffic consultant are necessary in order to clarify issues and to establish a comprehensive and robust assessment of the traffic implications. I believe that this is critical to the Council’s position on any
impending appeal against possible refusal of planning permission based on Transport grounds. I trust that you will advise Planning Committee in the appropriate manner.”

Thanks for all your support to date – we will keep you posted. In the meantime please keep doing as the ‘edited’ photo above says…
Support local businesses not Supermarkets!

Best wishes

The Pontcanna Pine Team

GREAT NEWS – Council Officials recommend rejection of developer’s Pontcanna Pine/Dairy plans!

Today’s been a good day! Whilst the campaign is not over we have won a significant victory, with the council’s officials recommending rejection of the developer’s plans for the Pontcanna Pine/Diary site.

The proposal will come before the planning committee on Weds 8 February at 2.30pm, we still want as many people to come as possible to show their concern at the plans. At this meeting the local councillors will consider the plans and hear the council’s recommendations (which we naturally hope they will follow.)

We’d like to thank everyone for their support – it proves that people and communities can make a difference! We’ve had emails, letters, tweets, posts, photos, quotes, ‘helping hands’, people posting leaflets, people signing petitions, press articles, community meetings, expert reports and advice and of course help making the video…

‘Giant lorry v Small Corner in Pontcanna’