A MULTI-MILLION pounds ‘extra care’ development – the first of its kind in the Vale – has been visited by Vale AM Jane Hutt.

The Welsh Goverrnment minister for finance looked at progress on Golau Caredig, in Barry, on the site of the former Theatre Royal cinema.

The supported accommodation, designed for people over 55, is nearing completion and due to open in the summer.

The Hafod Care Association scheme, in partnership with the Vale Council, will provide 42 new affordable homes for rent to people living in the Vale of Glamorgan.

It includes a restaurant, laundry, hairdresser and a multi-use activity/atrium space and will incorporate a feature glass façade to the front staircase designed by the architectural glass artist, Kate Maestri.

Vale Council cabinet member for housing, building services and community safety, Cllr Bronwen Brooks joined her on the visit to the partly completed scheme on Broad Street, Barry.

Councillor Brooks said the development would provide older people with their own homes and privacy, but still allow them to access the facilities along with any support and care on site when required.

Jane Hutt said she was pleased to see how much progress was being made on the development which has received funding via the Welsh Government's Social Housing grant.

Managing director of Hafod Care, Robert Wathan said: “This new facility will provide much-needed accommodation and support for elderly residents in the Vale of Glamorgan and we are very excited to be delivering the first extra care development ever to be built in the Vale of Glamorgan."

“We have been able, not only to develop a disused site in an area of Barry that is already undergoing a lot of regeneration work, but also help the Council meet the needs of the people throughout the Vale of Glamorgan, by providing accommodation which will allow older people to maintain their independence and also free-up family housing that will be used by others in need in an area of high demand.”

The building has been financed with more than £5 million Welsh Government grant funding and some private finance.

The scheme was designed following input from the Design Commission for Wales and building work is due to be completed by contractor Leadbitter in summer 2014, when it will be ready to welcome its new tenants.