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Tributes pour in for West Wales DJ legend Kai Liu

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FRIENDS of a popular nightclub owner and ‘legend’ of Swansea’s DJ scene have described him as a “one in a million” person who would go out of his way to help others. Father-of-four Kai Liu passed away on Wednesday, May 8, at the age of 45.

Mr Liu first immersed himself in the city’s music scene after purchasing a set of DJ decks, which were kept at his friend Greg Pickin’s flat in Morriston. Their passion for music quickly grew from playing vinyl at parties to DJing at iconic Swansea city centre venues such as Quids Inn, The Palace, Escape, and Bar Seven.

He eventually took over the running of PlanB nightclub in Northampton Lane, Swansea, which had previously been known as Crobar and Club Oxygen. Over the years, Mr Liu, who was from Skewen but brought up in Bonymaen, gave opportunities to generations of young and upcoming DJs and was instrumental in bringing some of the biggest names in dance music to the city.

Mr Pickin, 42, who now runs Heaven in Wind Street, Swansea, shared heartfelt memories of his late friend. “We were the best of mates; he was my daughter’s godfather, and we’d speak every other day. We were so close all the way through. We would talk about everything – business, family, holidays, Ibiza. Kai loved Ibiza. We had so much in common. There has been quite a lot of change in the music scene over the last 25 years, and we’d often discuss where we think it’s going. It ran a lot deeper than just being turntable brothers; we were close, but Kai was best friends to everybody.

“The amount of people who would class Kai as one of their best friends – he was just that kind of person, always happy, always smiling, always had time for people. He was very driven, very motivated, very passionate. He was a great dad, a great husband – just a great man. Kai was always there if I needed him. For the last 25 years, we’ve been through everything together, high times, amazing times, low times, just basically what a friendship is. Friends like that mean everything to you. He was a legend within the scene, and I don’t think anyone could deny him that status. If anyone deserved it, it would have been Kai.

“Kai brought through so many people over the years. A lot of DJs around owe their careers to Kai. He was an all-round good guy who was one in a million. He has probably brought through about two or three generations of DJs through the years. He was constantly evolving his team, and the team that he has left now in PlanB are a good bunch of lads, all in their twenties. His role within the Swansea scene has been pivotal. He has consistently been delivering the biggest acts to Swansea for ten to 12 years. He has pretty much held it together over time. There’s a lot Swansea needs to thank Kai for.”

Another of Mr Liu’s friends, CN Williams, described his talent as a DJ as “unparalleled”. He said, “I’ve been struggling to find the words. Kai was more than a friend; he was a true gentleman, an exemplary husband and father, and a pillar of strength for his family. His passion for music was infectious, and his talent as a DJ was unparalleled. Yet, amidst his professional success, he remained grounded, always ready to embrace life’s joys and celebrate with those around him.

“Together, we shared countless memories of late nights at Escape Nightclub, Bar 7, Eden, Moloko, and his own ventures like Warehouse, Oxygen, PlanB, and many more. I’ll forever cherish the memories we created, especially our last meeting at my stag do in Swansea, where Kai insisted on keeping the drinks flowing, as he always did.”

James ‘Slim’ Davies, former resident DJ at the old Rasputins, Wales’ first vodka bar and Swansea’s ‘smallest nightclub’, added, “I have many fond memories of Kai, starting from the days when he used to DJ in Quids Inn. His love of music, his infectious smile. Kai always had a lot of time for everyone. He will be greatly missed in the clubbing scene and beyond.”

Kai Liu’s legacy in the Swansea music scene will be remembered by the many lives he touched and the vibrant musical community he helped build.

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Castle Square Bike Night raises funds for Blood Bikes Wales

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HAVERFORDWEST was abuzz with excitement recently as Castle Square hosted its much-anticipated Bike Night. The event, held on Wednesday, 22nd May, saw an impressive turnout of motorcycle enthusiasts from across the region, all gathering for a worthy cause.

Castle Square Bike Night, which began at 6:30 PM, transformed the heart of Haverfordwest. The event aimed to bring together bikers of all ages and backgrounds to celebrate their shared passion for motorcycles while supporting Blood Bikes Wales, a charity dedicated to providing free, out-of-hours transport of essential medical items to NHS facilities across Wales.

The square was a sea of colour and chrome, with bikes of all makes and models on the town square. From sleek sports bikes to vintage classics, the variety on display was a testament to the diverse biking community in Pembrokeshire. Riders and spectators alike admired the impressive machines, swapped stories, and enjoyed the atmosphere.

Donations were collected throughout the evening, with all proceeds going directly to Blood Bikes Wales.

The charity relies entirely on volunteers and donations to operate, and events like these are crucial in ensuring they can continue their vital service. “We are incredibly grateful to everyone who has supported us tonight,” said a representative from Blood Bikes Wales. “The generosity of the biking community is truly heartwarming, and it makes a significant difference in our ability to provide life-saving services.”

As the evening drew to a close, the success of Castle Square Bike Night was evident in the smiling faces and the positive feedback from attendees. The event not only celebrated the love of motorcycles but also highlighted the power of community action in supporting charitable causes.

Castle Square Bike Night has firmly established itself as a key event in the Haverfordwest calendar, and the organisers are already looking forward to the next gathering. With its combination of passion, community spirit, and charitable giving, it is sure to remain a highlight for years to come.

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Pembrokeshire farm tent camping site plans backed

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Plans to expand a tent site at a Pembrokeshire farm which has diversified into tourism since the 1980s have been backed by councillors.

In an application before Pembrokeshire County Council’s May meeting of its planning committee, Mr and Mrs James sought permission to expand a tent site at South Cockett Caravan and Tent Site, Broadway, Broadhaven.

The application included a number of enhancements which would improve its visual appearance.

The Council Landscape Officer has raised no objection, advising that the additional hedgebank is to be encouraged.

Speaking at the meeting, agent Andrew Vaughan-Harris said three generations of the James family had been farming some 140 acres, in a mix of sheep, beef and cattle, and now had 70 touring caravan pitches on-site after diversifying in the 1980s.

“It’s a good news story over the last 30 years, it’s now up to 50 per cent of their income,” he told planners, adding the applicants had invested £180,000 on-site in the last couple of years.

“They still want to have a site for tents, now we have the application in front of us for a further field,” he added.

He finished: “This is helping sustainable farming; it is creating jobs.”

Members of the committee unanimously backed a recommendation to approve the scheme.

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General Election: Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion hopefuls for new seats

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WITH a July 4 date announced for the General Election, confirmed candidates for the two new seats in Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion will be gearing up their campaigns.

As part of constituency changes, Pembrokeshire’s current seats of Preseli Pembrokeshire and Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire have changed.

As part of the changes, parts of north Pembrokeshire – including St Davids – are joining the new Mid and South Pembrokeshire constituency, which will replace the Pembrokeshire parts of the current Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire.

The north of the county will be part of a new Ceredigion Preseli constituency joining parts of north Pembrokeshire – including Crymych and Maenclochog – with Ceredigion.

Current hopefuls for the Mid and South Pembrokeshire seat are Welsh Liberal Democrat Alistair Cameron, with Stephen Crabb for the Conservatives and Henry Tufnell for Labour.

Candidates confirmed to date in the neighbouring constituency of Ceredigion Preseli are Ben Lake for Plaid Cymru, Liberal Democrat Mark Williams, a former MP for Ceredigion, and Welsh Labour’s Jackie Jones, and  Conservative candidate Aled Thomas.

The constituancy changes follow a Westminster vote to cut the number of Welsh MPs from 40 to 32; each constituency  must contain between 69,724 and 77,062 voters, with the exception of Ynys Mon.

The new Ceredigion Preseli constituency has a road distance of nearly 75 miles from the extreme north to southwest of the new constituency.

The Boundary Commission for Wales made minor changes to previous proposals, removing St Davids, Solva and Letterston from the proposed Ceredigion Preseli constituency and including the Maenclochog ward instead.

Mid and south Pembrokeshire, under the changes, will have the largest number of electors of any of the constituencies in Wales, at 76,820.

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