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Communities benefit from new kitchens

Published: 15/07/2016

Flintshire County Council has partnered with a number of building contractors to help complete the upgrade work needed on our housing stock. The contractors are working on the Welsh Housing Quality Standard (WHQS) which is a national standard of quality for homes set by the Welsh Government and this work gives employment and apprenticeship opportunities to local people. Not only that, but our contractors have been active in helping local communities in various ways. An example of providing community benefit recently is that two of our contractors have replaced the kitchens in a number of community centres in the county. The Leader of Flintshire County Council, Councillor Aaron Shotton, said: “The standard of the work carried out at these venues is impressive and really does show quality workmanship at its best. I’d like to thank our two contractors, Novus Solutions and Keepmoat - their hard work really is appreciated and I’m sure the regular users of the centres will be very pleased with the improved facilities.” Novus Solutions has recently donated and fitted kitchens to two Community Centres in Holywell - Llwyn Aled and Llwyn Beuno. The schemes were decorated using subtle contrasting colours in line with the Visibly Better Cymru - RNIB’s accreditation scheme for supported housing across Wales. Gary Owen, Operations Manager at Novus, said: “Novus Property Solutions is a property maintenance specialist and we were contracted by Flintshire County Council to undertake painting and flooring works in the Holywell area. We place a strong emphasis on being a responsible business and serving the wider community. We have set ourselves a target of changing 20,000 lives as part of our Changing Lives campaign and we are delighted to have donated and fitted these kitchens to help benefit the community and improve the facilities at the centres.” Keepmoat, housing and regeneration specialist, refurbish and regenerate properties to improve economic and social outcomes for people. They have recently installed a new kitchen at the Aston Community Centre. Flintshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing and local member for Aston, Councillor Helen Brown, said: “The Community Centre in Aston is used by many different groups and is a real hub of the community. The upgrade to the kitchen has been a major improvement to the facility and the community is really grateful to Keepmoat for the great work they have done.” Frank Mondino, Area Director for Keepmoat North West, said: “We’re delighted to be able to install this new kitchen facility which the whole community can benefit from for years to come.” The WHQS programme means that all tenants in Wales should have the opportunity to live in good quality homes which meet the requirements of that household. The Capital Works Team at Flintshire County Council is responsible for delivering internal and external upgrades to all council owned properties, complying with the WHQS by the year 2020. Tony Jones, Capital Works Manager, said: “This is another example of contractors working with our team providing facilities to the wider community. These new kitchens are in addition to other kitchens we have previously provided in other communities such as Coppa View in Buckley; Chapel Court in Connahs Quay, and Hawksebury in Buckley. The WHQS contracts request contractors to provide Community Benefit as part of their contractual obligations.” Aston Community Centre Kitchen, left to right: Cllr Aaron Shotton, Stuart Davison and Julie Ferns from Keepmoat, Tony Jones - FCC Capital Works Manager, Rae Williams - FCC Tenant Liaison Officer, Pat Yale - Aston Community Centre and Cllr Helen Brown.