WORK to transform Barry's former Magistrates' Court into 52 affordable homes is on target for its 2015 completion date.

The development will not only provide new affordable housing for the area but also apprenticeship and work opportunities for local people.

Welsh Government minister for finance Jane Hutt and Vale Council cabinet member Bronwen Brooks visited the site to see the progress being made on the site.

This new scheme which is due for completion in early 2015 is being developed by Newydd Housing Association in partnership with the Vale Council and will provide 52 new affordable homes for rent as well as some retail units.

Councillor Brooks said: “This site is in a key town centre location on Thompson Street and will greatly contribute to the on-going regeneration of Barry.

"The 52 homes will not only be affordable but will also be built to Sustainable Homes Code, which will mean that they will be energy efficient leading to lower fuel bills for the new tenants.”

The homes will be built by contractors the Jehu Group, who are providing four apprenticeships and one supervisory post on the building site.

The scheme is being financed by over £3m of grant funding from the Welsh Government in addition to private finance.

Jane Hutt said: "This impressive housing development will provide much needed affordable housing here in Barry."

Paul Roberts, chief executive of Newydd Housing added: "We were pleased to invite the finance minister and Cllr Brooks to our exciting new housing development in Barry.

"At our development of the former Barry Magistrates' Court, and all our developments across South Wales, we show our commitment to tackling deprivation and economic inactivity by ensuring our contractors offer recruitment and provide training to local people on our site.

"Working in partnership with the Vale of Glamorgan Council and contractors on this project means that we are able to support the community of Barry to ensure residents are able to live in a sustainable community."

Marc Jehu, Managing Director of Jehu, said: "Jehu are very excited to be working on such an important project with Newydd Housing Association, and providing much needed quality affordable housing in Barry.

"As a company we embrace every opportunity to create new training and employment opportunities for local people, this project will enable us to showcase our experience by creating four apprentice opportunities that will run for the duration of build."