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Archive for the ‘CISHeW News’ Category

SCHeP Medical Student Placements

Posted on: January 13th, 2016 by CISHeW Posted in CISHeW News

During November 2015 SCHeP hosted 10 Medical Student Placement within the North Merthyr Tydfil Community. Dr Martin O’Neil has written a blog about the experiences of this pilot training which can be read here.


Representing North Merthyr

Posted on: January 13th, 2016 by CISHeW Posted in CISHeW News

As Representing Communities enters its final year, Representing North Merthyr have established a collaboration with National Theatre Wales and POSSIB, an arts and health project in Merthyr. We will be working with participants and community members to co-produce a theatrical event taking place in June 2016 which will be based on the data collected as part of the research since it began in 2013. The data includes interviews, focus groups, digital stories, film footage, poetry, drawings, photographs and songs, all exploring community life, health and wellbeing in North Merthyr. We are working with Rhiannon White, co-director of Common Wealth Theatre, and Kelly Jones, a script writer, through National Theatre Wales. These two artists will be looking at the data with us and shaping it into an evening of drama and knowledge exchange, performed by professional actors and community members. The ‘Assembly’ will be held in Merthyr and attended by local residents, policy makers, Assembly Members and other decision makers in the area. This type of public engagement and knowledge exchange is highly experimental and innovative and we will be documenting how it unfolds and the impact it has on audience members. For more information please contact Ellie Byrne at byrnee@cardiff.ac.uk

Police commissioner responds to ‘gurnos zebras’ call for action on youth safety in north merthyr

Posted on: April 23rd, 2015 by CISHeW Posted in CISHeW News



On the 21st April 2015 young people from the Gurnos in Merthyr dressed up as zebras to highlight stories of how they felt unsafe and to propose practical changes that would improve their lives, including a new zebra crossing.  The Gurnos Zebras Action was organised by young people from Bishop Hedley school and Forsythia Youth Project, and was attended by powerful decision-makers, including the Police Commissioner, Chief Inspector, Parliamentary Candidate and a representative of the local Assembly Member.


The young people are participating in a research project and youth leadership programme run by Citizens Cymru Wales and Cardiff University, aimed at helping them listen to their communities, find important issues, and then to turn them into local campaigns.  After months of listening and planning, the young people called on the visiting dignitaries to support their request for:


1. Adequate lighting on the path beside Prince Charles hospital; 2. A zebra crossing on the Heads of the Valleys road, opposite the hospital; 3. The closure of a dangerous subway under the same road.


These issues emerged from dozens of face-to-face conversations with other young people, interviews by Cardiff University staff, digital mapping of safety concerns, and a neighbourhood walk to pinpoint local problems.  All of the participants had personal stories to tell about how they had felt unsafe in the area, and how their three-point plan would make them feel safer.  They took Rt Hon Alun Michael (the Police & Crime Commissioner), Chief Inspector David Peart (South Wales Police), Gerald Jones (Labour candidate for Merthyr Tydfil), Chris Binding (Office of Huw Lewis AM) and local police on a tour of the area, and showed them the problems that caused feelings of being unsafe. These included a dangerous subway which was littered with broken glass, needles and other drug paraphernalia, a poorly-lit path used by young people, and the need for a pedestrian crossing across a busy road.


Patrycja Stulczewska, 12, of Forsythia Youth Project and a leader on the campaign, said:

“I am really happy about tonight’s Gurnos Zebras Action.  I am proud of myself and of the local community for speaking out to these important people.  And it seemed like they really listened and want to help.”


Caitlin Matthews, 12, of Forsythia Youth Project and a leader on the campaign, said:

“This is the first time I have spoken up in public.  I took this step because we are trying to improve safety on a path that my friends and I use every day.  Young people should always feel safe in their local community, particularly on the route to school or our local youth club.  I hope that we see the lighting on these paths improved soon.”


Rt Hon Alun Michael, South Wales Police Commissioner, said:

“At a time when we hear so many negative things about young people, it is good to see young people from Forsythia Youth Project and Bishop Hedley School taking responsibility for identifying problems and coming up with solutions. They are an inspiration.  We listened carefully to what they had to say, and will support the next steps of their campaign.”


Having secured the support of their visitors for the campaign, the Gurnos Zebras have now secured a meeting with the Leader of Merthyr Tydfil Borough Council, Cllr Brendan Toomey, who has the power to bring about the changes the young people are looking for.


Patrycja Stulczewska said:

“I can’t wait until we meet the Leader of the Council, Brendan Toomey, who has agreed to meet us soon, because he has the power to help us.  We won’t give up until we have made a change.”

Save Our Coal Exchange

Posted on: February 12th, 2015 by CISHeW No Comments Posted in CISHeW News

Cardiff Coal Exchange

This is a 3D scan image of the Coal Exchange created by students from the Welsh School of Architecture.



The Coal Exchange is a historic building located in the heart of   Cardiff’s former dockland which provided the commercial centre for the largest coal trading port in the world.

The structure is of enormous historical and cultural significance and closed as a publicly accessible building in August 2014, after falling into decline and disrepair. In response to this, groups have come together in a campaign to save the building for the people of Wales.  Representatives from the University have become closely involved in this group to support members of the local community.

Strong Communities, Healthier People (SCHeP) one of Cardiff Universities flagship engagement projects, is leading a community engagement strategy to enable the local community and wider coalfield area to have a voice in the future developments of the building. This also includes working with the National Museum of Wales to explore the potential for establishing “pop up museums” throughout the South Wales coalfield area to raise the profile of the links between the communities of South Wales and the international trade in coal.

The campaign is keen to explore closer collaboration with the different departments and schools at Cardiff University  and its surrounding community. If you think you might be able to help contact Martin O’Neill.

Follow the coal exchange on facebook   

Watch a short film about the Coal Exchange

What are your memories of The Coal Exchange – Can you share any stories? #‎SaveTheCoalExchange

Social and Economic Change and Well-being

Posted on: February 12th, 2015 by CISHeW Posted in CISHeW News


Held on Wednesday 4 February, 6-7.30pm, National Museum Wales, Cardiff

Professor Gareth Williams recently took part in the British Academy debate, if you were unable to attend you can watch it here !

Many thank to the Bristish Academy for allowing us to post the video, you can see more information about this debate and other events organised by the Bristish Academy on the link below.


Julian Tudor Hart Lecture 2014

Posted on: February 12th, 2015 by CISHeW Posted in CISHeW News

In collaboration with Public Health Wales, the Cardiff School of Social Science, WISERD and CISHeW

View the film of the 2014 lecture ‘Include Me Out. Exclude You In: imagining the future of primary care’ presented by Professor Graham Watt, Norrie Miller Professor of General Practice University of Glasgow.

Professor Watt’s slides cover some of the time in the 1980s when he worked as a MRC Research Registrar with Mary and Julian Tudor Hart at the Glyncorrwg Health Centre in South Wales.
Many thanks to Public Health Wales for allowing us to share this videowww.publichealthwales.org/health-promotion-library 

ISA World Congress 2014

We have had two abstracts accepted for the International Sociological Association’s World Congress in Yokohama, Japan. The conference takes place in July 2014 and will bring together sociologists from all over the world. The Representing Communities team will give a paper in the session

– What is the Worth of Art?: Approaches to the Sociology of Art Valuations and Evaluations. (more…)

Towards a Microsociality of Austerity

On 14th April Gareth Williams, Eva Elliott and Ellie Byrne spoke at a conference held at Cardiff University. Hosted by Valerie Walkerdine and David Studdert, Towards a Microsociality of Austerity explored ways of thinking about and using micro-social approaches to community-based studies.

New Appointments

CISHeW has recently made two appointments. Maddy Phillips has a background in drama and theatre and has started a PhD linked to the Representing Communities project. Maddy will be looking at the role of arts practitioners in the policy making process, focusing on North Merthyr and Dennistoun. Gareth Thomas has been appointed as Research Associate for a GIS project in North Merthyr. (more…)

Straeon: Storytelling Workshops in Schools

Posted on: April 30th, 2014 by CISHeW Tags: , , , ,
Posted in CISHeW News

As part of our Representing Communities project we are working with primary school children in an exciting storytelling project. Entitled ‘Straeon’ (Welsh for ‘stories’), storyteller Michael Harvey has worked with three classes to create their own story which they have learned together as a class. Older pupils have also written down and edited their story in small groups, learning about the techniques that writers use when composing a story.

The next stage involves each class working with an illustrator to create pictures for the stories, and then a book will be produced and launched at the Hay Festival in 2015. Our work has involved observation and filming of the sessions, looking at what pupils contribute in terms of content for the stories, but also looking at the ways in which they engage with the creative process.

This often takes place through the body; acting out parts of the story, pulling faces of disgust, and expressions of concern for characters when things go wrong. We hope that the book will demonstrate the creative talents and potential of a group of young people who are from an area which is often represented as having no hope, aspiration or future. Through the arts and humanities, ‘Straeon’ provides an alternative way of looking.