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Neuadd Maldwyn conversion to cost £11.59m

Created on 09/10/2020 @ 11:58
By Elgan Hearn, Local Democracy Reporter

Redeveloping Welshpool’s Neuadd Maldwyn into flats for older people is set to cost £11.59 million.

At next week’s Health and Care Scrutiny Committee meeting, councillors will look at a report that proposes transferring the building - estimated to be worth £660,000 - to Clwyd Alyn Housing Association, for nothing.

According to the report , this is seen as Powys County Council’s (PCC) contribution to the scheme.

Plans to turn the Grade II listed Neuadd Maldwyn, which has been a regional headquarter for PCC staff, into 66 one and two-bedroom apartments was submitted by Clwyd Alyn housing association earlier this year.

Two other planning applications for listed building consent and conservation area consent have also been submitted. The report says these plans will be decided by early November.

The report also says that the PCC Cabinet and Executive Management Team have met with the Chief Executive of Clwyd Alyn, Clare Budden, who has confirmed the housing association’s commitment to the scheme.

According to the report, the costs of the scheme will be split three ways with over £6.7 million expected to come from the Welsh Government.

This would be:

£4,158, 040 from a Social Housing Grant

£2,562,750 from the Integrated Care Fund

The remaining £4,866,779 will come from Clwyd Alyn themselves who say in the report that they £34 million “immediately available for construction projects” with a further £90 million in “retained bonds for future development growth”.

The report goes on to state the case for extra care in the Welshpool area.

“The demand for extra care in Welshpool and the surrounding area is one of the highest in Powys,” it states. “Population projections indicate a 157% increase in the number of people aged over 85 by 2036 from 950 to 2,445.”

A corresponding 83% increase is expected in individuals who have dementia from 497 to 910.

The report continues: “With no extra care, only 115 sheltered accommodation units are available and only eight residential care beds for dementia per 1,000 population, there is a clear demand.”

The report adds that, extra care housing is the “ideal provision” to address “current gaps” in service and to meet the current and projected demand.

The original decision to go ahead with the scheme with Clwyd Alyn was taken by cabinet in May 2019.

The former headquarters for Montgomeryshire County Council,  Neuadd Maldwyn, was declared as surplus to PCC’s requirements, following a review of office accommodation in North Powys.

In Welshpool, closing Neuadd Maldwyn is part of an issue that has seen protest marches and petitions against the decision.

Staff from Neuadd Maldwyn would be scattered around other offices including the former library on Brook Street which is being converted into offices.

The library in turn has been moved to the Powysland Museum.

The building, now a home to both museum and library has been re-branded as, Y Lanfa/The Wharf.

Neuadd Maldwyn dates back to 1927 when it was built for the former Montgomeryshire County Council, extensions were added in the 1930s and 1950s.

The report will go in front of Cabinet for a decision soon, and will also include comments from the scrutiny meeting.
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