Zoey Allen with her stall at Cardiff Christmas Market 2023. Image: Zoey Allen
Zoey Allen with her stall at Cardiff Christmas Market 2023. Image: Zoey Allen

‘I think he’s a disgrace of a human being’: Trans jewellery shop owner on PM’s jibe

She has faced prejudice in Cardiff and was shocked by Sunak’s comments

THE trans owner of a jewellery shop has called Rishi Sunak “a disgrace of a human being” for a jibe he made against trans women while Brianna Ghey’s mother was in Parliament. 

“It’s one thing having opinions about different people that you don’t understand, it’s a second thing using a platform like his to amplify hate,” she said. “And then thirdly then to do it in front of Brianna’s mother and just off the cuff chuck those comments about like that – I think he’s a disgusting human being.”

Zoey Allen faced prejudice herself when she was selling jewellery at the Christmas Market in Cardiff in 2023. 

Two men in their forties approached the stall and one asked her what the LGBTQ+ community is. She explained, then she said he replied: “Oh, so you mean the paedophiles? You mean the ones that go into school and indoctrinate the kids?”

Ms Allen said the man called her a number of slurs before she asked him to leave, which he did along with the man who accompanied him.

“I think I’m generally quite a strong person when it comes to things like that and I dealt with it, but then afterwards I was shell shocked for a few days and just really on edge. So that was not a feeling I’m used to.”

The jewellery shop owner said that after she talked about this experience on social media, lots of people came up to her at the market to check if she was OK and to tell her she is supported and that things like this shouldn’t be happening. 

Zoey Allen making a piece of jewellery. Image: Zoey Allen

Ms Allen said that being a vendor at markets in Cardiff has been a good experience apart from that one incident. She said her shop KelZo is already booked in to sell at Cardiff Pride, and her Valentines collection released on Jan 31 has been popular. 

People approach her at markets and ask for advice on talking to family members about LGBTQ+ issues – Ms Allen said that it’s lovely she can offer support to these people. 

KelZo was started in 2020, a year after she came out in 2019. Her goal is to one day have her own store with a big rainbow on the front. 

She added that everything she does is about visibility and representation for trans people.

“Anything I can do to raise awareness and be more visible so that people can get used to seeing trans people in the world,” she said. “It can feel a bit of a burden sometimes, but at the same time I feel like because a lot of trans women especially don’t have the courage, I’m like well I kind of do sometimes so I may as well be a little bit of a voice.”

PM Rishi Sunak has been urged to apologise for his words in the House of Commons on February 7.

When commenting on Labour U-turns at PMQs, Mr Sunak said that one of these U-turns was on “defining a woman”, then added “although in fairness that was only 99% of a U-turn”.

The jibe about the definition of a woman was made when the mother of murdered trans teenager Brianna Ghey was in Parliament. He believed her to be in the public gallery at the time.