Vale of Glamorgan AM Jane Hutt met families whose lives have been transformed when she visited Wales & West Housing’s £2.3m affordable homes development at Boverton.
Built near Boverton Brook, the Redwood Close development comprises of two three bedroom wheelchair-adapted houses, and 10 two and one bedroom houses and flats. It has benefited from a £1.3 million Welsh Government Social Housing Grant in partnership with the Vale of Glamorgan Council.
Jane Hutt met two families with wheelchair users, whose lives and wellbeing has greatly improved since moving to their specially-adapted new homes.
Retired salesman Mike Parsons relies on a wheelchair since he was diagnosed with the co-ordination disorder ataxia and suffered several strokes. He and his wife Moira, both 73, had been renting an unsuitable private house in the village so they could be close to their three children.
Anne Hinchey, Chief Executive of Wales & West Housing, with Mike Parsons in his specially adapted new home
Wales & West Housing worked closely with Mr Parson’s occupational therapist to adapt the house for his needs. He has a downstairs bedroom with electric hoist, a wet room with level access shower and grab rails, a ground floor storage room big enough for his new electric wheelchair and extra wide doors and corridors throughout the ground floor. The lounge is also fitted with hoist rails.
Mr Parsons says: “This house is marvellous. It has given me back my independence. Before we moved here I felt like a prisoner in my bedroom.
“We now have everything we need to make our lives easier. The extra wide corridors and doors means I am able to move about without help. I can go into the kitchen and make myself a cup of tea or go out into the garden. I have even been able to drive myself down to the village in my electric wheelchair. We are so much happier."
She also visited Lana Roberts next door who had been waiting 15 year to move from her three bedroom council house in the village to a more suitable home with her disabled 21-year-old son. Connor was born with a brain condition which has left him with severe medical problems. Lana, who lives with her partner, Steven, and their daughters Cadie, 14, and Casey-Mae, eight, says: “This house has changed our lives completely. In our old house, everything was a struggle and I was always stressed.
“Here Connor has his own room downstairs. He can shower himself in the wet room and I don’t need to help him. And when his hip goes he can no longer walk, I have the hoists in place to lift him and won’t have to struggle.”
Jane Hutt visits Connor Roberts and his family in their specially adapted home
Ms Hutt also called in to see local mum Sian Davies, 23, and her 11-month-old daughter Isabelle at their two bedroom home at Redwood Close.
Miss Davies said: “Ever since Isabelle was born, I’ve wanted a place of my own. I couldn’t afford to live in the area but I didn’t want to move away. We were sharing a room at my mum’s house but here Isabelle has her own room and is so happy. The house is amazing. The neighbours are friendly and there’s a lovely community here. Plus my mum lives close by and visits most days.”
Following the visit, Jane Hutt said: “It has been a pleasure to visit Redwood Close and thank Wales & West Housing for working with the Welsh Government to help us achieve our ambition to provide 20,000 affordable homes during this term of government.
“The homes I saw are excellent examples of the sort of home we are aiming to build in Wales, designed to be warm, secure, safe and energy efficient. The have been built to meet people’s needs and support is in place for those who need it, they will help residents maintain their independence and quality of life for longer."
Anne Hinchey, Chief Executive of Wales & West Housing, said: “We were delighted to welcome Jane Hutt AM to the scheme and show her how our quality affordable homes are making a difference to the lives of residents living and working in the Llantwit Major area. We are committed to providing much-needed affordable homes in the Vale of Glamorgan.
“We have developed a local lettings policy in partnership with the Vale of Glamorgan Council and Llantwit Major Town Council to make sure that Redwood Close is sustainable and will become part of the local community and show a commitment to the local area.”