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Here is an opportunity for pupils to join the Cardiff County and Vale of Glamorgan Foundation Orchestra. The orchestra is open to all pupils currently in Y2-Y5. They welcome players of all abilities and they will be guaranteed a place if they attend the auditon, as we will write the music to cater for all abilities. Anyone learning an orchestral instrument (including violin, viola, cello, double bass, flute, clarinet, saxophone, oboe, bassoon, trumpet/cornet, horns, trombone, bass) since September should have reached a stage where they can join in (even if they have not yet taken grade 1), but we also particularly welcome those who have been playing for much longer and can play the more challenging parts. Our aim is the support the least experienced, but also stretch the most able - we currently have children from grade 1 to grade 8 standard. We have a full percussion section so, besides drummers, any keyboard/piano players can also join as they can play the tuned instruments (as well as the big drums!).

The orchestra, pictured above in St David’s Hall, has around 130 players from over 50 primary schools in Cardiff and the Vale and we are keen to have members from even more. At the auditon they need to play us a short piece they have been learning to help us decide which group to put them in with players of similar ability. It is ideal if they come with at least one other person from their school, even if they do not play the same instrument. The orchestra rehearses on Thursday in term time from 5.45-7.15pm and play two concerts each year, first in St David’s Hall in March and then City Hall in July. We welcome members of staff to each of these concerts to see and hear them, if you contact us nearer the time.


I would be very grateful if you could pass on the details below (please share the picture or adapt this email if it helps) to any pupils who might be interested:


THURSDAY 21ST JUNE – Friary centre, Cardiff

All instruments (school name A-R) 5.45-6.30pm

  1. instruments (school name S-Z) 6.30-7.15pm


THURSDAY 5th JULY - Friary centre, Cardiff


  1. instruments, all primary schools. 5.45-7.00pm


We will also welcome new members in September (dates to be advised) if anyone lacks confidence now, or cannot make these dates.


If you have any queries, including about instruments, please email us:




Professor Gary Beauchamp


Conductor – Cardiff County and Vale of Glamorgan Foundation Orchestra



We are looking to improve our admission policy guidance. As part of this, I am very pleased to announce that Cardiff Council Admissions Team will be hosting focus group workshops with the goal of improving our Admission to Schools guidance document for parents. We have arranged five focus groups around Cardiff over the coming weeks and I kindly request that the letter attached to this email be sent to all parents to invite them. We would also appreciate if you can distribute the message via your own distribution channels (text, email, in person) – We are unable to do so due to GDPR constraints. If these workshops are successful, we will produce more accessible information for parents and schools and reduce stress/anxiety of parents and school admission teams – The best way to achieve this is to work together.



The goal is to understand the views of parents around admission policy guidance. This is not a workshop on admission arrangements, catchment areas or school appeals. We hope to capture the views of those who are under-represented and can be challenging to engage, but all parents and staff are welcome to attend. Please refer to the attached letter for a better understanding of the workshop content.


The workshops will be held on:

· Wednesday July 4th, 9:00AM, Ninian Park Primary School

· Wednesday July 4th, 4:30PM, Ysgol Gymraeg Nant Caerau

· Monday July 9th, 4:30PM, Mount Stuart Primary School

· Tuesday July 10th, 4:30PM, Rhydypenau Primary School

· Wednesday July 11th, 4:30PM, Rumney Primary School


Parents must register their interest by email to ( and could you please inform me if they require Welsh support at the event.

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Reclaiming Our Streets with Car Free Day


Cardiff will celebrate its biggest ever car-free day when the city centre will be closed to all traffic on Sunday, May 13th.

The HSBC City Ride will also take place on the same day to encourage families to come into Cardiff and enjoy a bike ride around a 5Km circuit on closed roads. In total 14 city centre roads will be closed off to traffic.

Councillor Caro Wild, Cabinet Member for Strategic Planning and Transport, said: "We are still putting the finishing touches to what I believe will be a fantastic family day out, but right now we just want people to get the date in their diaries. So I'd ask everyone in the city to make a note for Sunday, May 13, when we hope to showcase how going car free for the day can benefit the city.

"There will be lots of activities and performances to enjoy and we are working with public transport providers so that people can get into and out of the city without using cars. Some activities have already been agreed, but we will be releasing further information on the exact line-up closer to the event.

"We do not want to exclude anyone from coming to the city centre, and are encouraging public transport providers to provide additional Sunday services and discounted tickets so we can make sure people have alternative ways to get into the centre"

A variety of family-friendly, on-street entertainment and activities are planned for Castle Street and North Road.


These include:

  • BMX stunt riders using a jump box
  • Live music and performances
  • Activities and games
  • A skateboard ramp
  • nextbikes and Peddle Power bikes
  • A climbing wall
  • A mountain biking track
  • Information on sustainable travel


Anyone interested in getting involved on the day - either supplying entertainment or helping out - can send enquiries

Riders who want to join the HSBC City Ride can register and find more information about it here -


Cllr Wild, added: "Around 108,000 cars come into or out of the city centre over a typical 24-hour period, and at the moment only around 5,300 people choose to cycle over the same period. This Council is keen to change these statistics, we want to do everything we can to encourage sustainable forms of travel and we'd love to see 20% of Cardiff's workforce cycle into work by 2026. It would transform the way the city looks and feels. I would hope we can build on this event and bring several Car Free Days to the city every year. We want people to see for themselves just how much better the environment could be for everyone with less cars on our roads."

The Council will work with partners, including Public Health Wales, to monitor air quality in the city centre on the day, to better understand the contribution congestion and traffic flow makes to the air we breathe in the city centre.

The Council has launched a Green Paper on Clean Air in the city and is urging residents to take part in the conversationabout the big ideas that could shape the future of Cardiff's transport system and the way the city could look and feel in the future.

The Transport & Clean Air Green Paper is available to view on a series of questions have been asked in each section to get feedback from residents on the proposals and ideas before the consultation closes on 1st July.

How you can get involved - join the conversation by:

The bike ride circuit will start at King Edward V11 Avenue, onto Boulevard de Nantes, down North Road towards the City Centre, onto Duke Street, High Street, down St Mary Street to Walkabout, back up St Mary Street, onto Wood Street, up Castle Street, along Duke Street, up North Road to the junction with Colum Road, back down North Road, onto Corbett Road and then re-joining Kind Edward V11 Avenue.

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