Credit: Ding Cycle Tours

Ding Cycle Tours

Credit: Ding Cycle Tours

Husband and wife duo Mark and Beccy, both journalists and lecturers, have recently embarked on an exciting new venture in Cardiff, offering guided three-hour sightseeing bike tours of the city. Their enterprise, Ding, is a not-for-profit social initiative aimed at supporting the local community and promoting cycling as a healthy and sustainable mode of transportation.

Ding’s cycle tours have already garnered rave reviews from visitors from the US, the Netherlands, the north of England, and the local areas. The enterprise reinvests any profits back into the business to further benefit the community. The goal is to encourage cycling in Cardiff and support local independent businesses while celebrating the city’s diversity.

Ding’s tours, led on distinctive blue bikes equipped with traditional bells, offer a unique way to explore Cardiff. The tours cover the city’s history from Roman times to modern rock stars, traversing bike lanes and picturesque parks. With frequent stops and a leisurely pace, the tours are accessible to all competent cyclists, regardless of fitness level. Friendly guides, including experienced journalists and broadcasters, share their personal stories and insights about living and working in Cardiff, making the experience both educational and entertaining.

Navigating Cardiff by bike is a breeze with Ding. Avoiding busy roads, the tours take advantage of the city’s extensive cycle lanes and serene parks, offering a safe and scenic experience. Ding’s traditional blue bikes are not only visually charming but also comfortable and well-maintained. Designed for ease of use, they feature stands for convenient parking. The tours proceed at a relaxed pace, making the most of Cardiff’s flat terrain.

Mark and Beccy bring decades of experience living and working in Cardiff, ensuring that every tour is engaging and fun. Their passion for the city and cycling is infectious, promising an enjoyable ride whether you are a visitor or a local. Ding strives to accommodate all visitors, offering tours in multiple languages upon request. Whether you speak Welsh, French, Spanish, or another language, Ding will do its best to ensure everyone can enjoy the tour.For more information or to book a tour, visit

Joe’s Plant Place

Credit: @joesplantplace

Joe’s Plant Place has recently joined the vibrant group of independent traders at Ffos Caerphilly. This venture promises a captivating journey into the world of houseplants, offering a new sanctuary for plant lovers.

Joe, the founder, shares the heartfelt story behind the business: ‘We started this idea on market stalls July 2023 with the [aim] of turning my hobby into a business to support my young family and leave a legacy that my daughter may someday want to take on herself. From Joe’s Houseplants to Joe’s Plant Place, the idea has turned into something beautiful.’

In December 2023, Joe made the bold decision to leave his full-time job and fully dedicate himself to this dream. The shop, meticulously prepared with help from Joe’s family, loved ones, and financial support from @princestrust and @caerphillycouncil, has already received tons of love from plant aficionados, and the owner reveals that they have ‘major plans for the next 3 years to invigorate the plant hobby.’

Collaborating with Ffos Caerphilly, Joe’s Plant Place has also introduced vibrant plant installations that enhance the shopping experience throughout the venue, with stunning 3D-printed pots created by Eureka Print 3D.

Looking ahead, Joe has a series of workshops in the works, with themes including plant thirst aid rescue, terrariums, seascapes, desertscapes, and kids activities. Additionally, there will be workshops on ceramic pot painting, as well as potential hen do parties and team-building activities. 

Joe’s Plant Place is poised to become a cherished destination for houseplant lovers, promising a joyful experience filled with beauty, creativity, and community spirit.

For more information, visit

Ethereal Aesthetics Piercing Boutique

Credit: Ethereal Aesthetics Piercing Boutique

Celebrating ten years in the piercing industry and marking her second year as a proud member of the UK Association of Professional Piercers, Rae, the visionary behind Ethereal Aesthetics Piercing Boutique, is transforming the body piercing landscape in Cardiff. Her journey began with a prominent high street retail/piercing chain and evolved through years of self-employment in local tattoo studios. Recognising Cardiff’s need for a dedicated, distraction-free piercing space, Rae founded Ethereal Aesthetics Piercing Boutique in 2022.

Situated at Meanwhile Creative, a vibrant hub for local independent businesses just minutes from Cardiff Central Station, Ethereal Aesthetics Piercing Boutique offers a serene and inclusive environment – the perfect a sanctuary for those seeking personalised, high-end piercing and styling experiences. Rae sources jewelry exclusively from the industry’s finest suppliers, including BVLA, Junipurr, Anatometal, and Industrial Strength, ensuring the highest quality for her clients.

Ethereal Aesthetics Piercing Boutique operates on an appointment-only basis, providing private, hour-long sessions that prioritise client comfort and undivided attention. Rae meticulously discusses healing expectations, aftercare, and jewelry choices with her clients, with an emphasis on informed consent and honesty. For Rae, piercing is more than a procedure – it’s a lifestyle choice, and she is dedicated to offering lifetime aftercare, check-ups, custom jewelry design, styling, and curation services. Her commitment extends to troubleshooting and cleaning services for existing piercings, regardless of their origin.

Rae specialises in ear piercings and custom ear curations, but the studio’s offering also includes a range of facial and body piercings, featuring implant-grade titanium and solid 14/18k jewelry. With an array of options available for custom orders, there is something to suit every budget. The studio’s sterilisation protocols are impeccable, using sterile, single-use piercing blades and tools, and employing aseptic techniques with jewelry cleaned and sterilised in-studio before every piercing.

Piercing is Rae’s passion, and her ethos is clear: everyone deserves a safe, welcoming space where their piercing experience, comfort, and wellbeing are paramount. Ethereal Aesthetics Piercing Boutique is a testament to this philosophy, offering Cardiff a premier destination for exquisite and thoughtful body piercings.

See more of Rae’s work or book your appointment at


Credit: Will Barker

In an exciting stride for Cardiff’s dining scene, Chef Tom Waters recently unveiled his much-anticipated restaurant, Gorse. This permanent establishment follows the widespread acclaim of his pop-up ventures, which have tantalised taste buds across the Welsh capital.

Tom Waters, a Newport native, boasts an impressive resume with stints at London’s prestigious kitchens such as Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck, The Square, and Bonhams. Returning to his Welsh roots eighteen months ago, Tom’s pop-up concept, Gorse, quickly became a local sensation. His ‘Modern Welsh’ tasting menus, which highlight his deep connections with local farmers and producers, have captivated diners with a unique blend of tradition and innovation.

According to Tom, Gorse is all about delivering ‘a taste of Wales on a plate’ in a relaxed and unpretentious environment – a feat which he achieves through a mix of meticulous technique and heartfelt local sourcing.

Gorse’s new permanent home, a transformed coffee shop on Kings Road in Pontcanna, Cardiff, now features a modern, intimate dining room which can house up to 22 guests, complete with a sleek, open-plan kitchen. The space, designed by local agency Karna, embodies Tom’s passion for local sourcing. Walls adorned with plaster-immortalised Gorse flowers from Gower and locally sourced ceramic crockery add to the restaurant’s distinct charm, while vases of dried black oats pay homage to Wales’ agricultural heritage.

Diners at Gorse can look forward to an ever-evolving menu rooted in micro-seasonality. ‘Gorse is about capturing local ingredients at the peak of their deliciousness and serving them in creative and sometimes unexpected ways,’ Tom explains. With inspiration drawn from Wales’ rich coastline and bountiful produce, the dishes promise to be a fresh take on traditional Welsh cuisine.

Gorse offers a four-course lunchtime menu at £35 per person, while evenings feature a choice of seven or ten-course tasting menus, priced at £75 and £100 respectively. With bookings now open, the venue is poised to become a must-visit destination for culinary enthusiasts. 

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Author WCS

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