Vil­lage plans could pro­vide a ‘global blue­print’

Llanelli Star - - NEWS -

PLANS for a £200 mil­lion Well­ness Vil­lage in Llanelli could pro­vide a global blue­print on how health­care and leisure ser­vices should best be de­liv­ered in fu­ture, ac­cord­ing to Scar­lets rugby boss Nigel Short.

Mr Short, who sits on the Swansea Bay City Deal’s Eco­nomic Strat­egy Board, says the project ear­marked for a site at Delta Lakes has the po­ten­tial to boost not just Llanelli, but Car­marthen­shire and South Wales as a whole.

Pro­vid­ing spe­cial­ist pri­vate sec­tor guid­ance to the City Deal’s de­ci­sion-mak­ing Joint Com­mit­tee, the Eco­nomic Strat­egy Board is made up of experts in sec­tors in­clud­ing busi­ness, hous­ing, life sciences, en­ergy, fi­nance and man­u­fac­tur­ing.

Car­marthen­shire Coun­cil is now work­ing on an al­ter­na­tive de­liv­ery plan for the Well­ness Vil­lage, which will be con­sid­ered for ap­proval by Joint Com­mit­tee.

Plans in­clude a state-ofthe-art leisure cen­tre, cut­ting-edge fa­cil­i­ties for life science re­search, as­sisted liv­ing ac­com­mo­da­tion, and land­scaped spa­ces for out­door recre­ation.

Es­ti­mated to be worth £467 mil­lion and close to 2,000 jobs to the lo­cal econ­omy, the Well­ness Vil­lage could also in­clude a well­ness ho­tel to meet the grow­ing de­mand for well­ness tourism.

Mr Short, who has been chair­man of the Scar­lets for nine years, said: “My in­volve­ment with the

Scar­lets means I’m very pas­sion­ate about Llanelli and the sur­round­ing area.

“With the Well­ness Vil­lage project, you can’t just look at the pounds, shillings and pence. You’ve got to look at the as­pi­ra­tional na­ture of the project, and what it does for the com­mu­nity and the en­vi­ron­ment.

“The Well­ness Vil­lage is in­te­grated, so it’s not just a hous­ing de­vel­op­ment or a sports vil­lage. As well as en­vi­ron­men­tal im­prove­ments, there will be re­search and ed­u­ca­tional el­e­ments in­cluded in the project. It’s a holis­tic de­vel­op­ment that can make a big dif­fer­ence over time.

“Like many parts of South Wales, Llanelli has an in­dus­trial past that we’re very proud of. But life has to move on, and the type of de­vel­op­ment ear­marked for Delta Lakes has the po­ten­tial to help us move for­ward as a so­ci­ety.”

The Well­ness Vil­lage is one of a num­ber of projects across South West Wales due to be part­funded by the £1.3 bil­lion Swansea Bay City Deal.

Funded by the UK Gov­ern­ment, the Welsh Gov­ern­ment, the pub­lic sec­tor and the pri­vate sec­tor, the City Deal is be­ing led by the four Swansea Bay City Re­gion lo­cal au­thor­i­ties, the two re­gional health boards, Swansea University and the University of Wales Trin­ity Saint David.

Nigel Short.

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