Glanogwr House receives first platinum RNIB Cymru award

Tenants living at Glanogwr House in Bridgend can now live independently for longer after renovation works have improved the building for those living with sight loss.

Glanogwr House is the first of its kind, a managed retirement scheme for over 55s, in Bridgend County Borough to achieve a platinum award which is the highest level of RNIB’s Visibly Better accreditation.

Scheme manager, Gail Stokes and John Higgins, Maintenance Surveyor at Hafod, have worked towards a set of six standards to achieve the award. These focus on different aspects of accessibility for people with sight loss and aim to develop and maintain accessible environments so people can feel more confident getting around the places they visit, work or live.

Improvements to the inside of the building have included new automated lighting and updated signage throughout ensuring it is bilingual and in braille. Walls have also been painted with contrasting colours so objects and features stand out easily to those who are partially sighted.

Outside, a sensory garden has been carefully designed with plants and herbs providing a rich therapeutic experience, warm-to-touch handrails have been fitted and edging has been painted to allow tenants to enjoy the garden area and water feature safely.

At a special awards presentation, tenants were joined by representatives from Hafod, RNIB Cymru, local councillors and politicians to celebrate their achievement and have a tour of the building.

John Higgins told us: “We’re so proud to receive the Visibly Better award as it confirms our commitment of putting our customers at the heart of everything we do. In this case, providing safe and secure homes which meet our tenants’ needs.

“It’s also rewarding to see tenants at Glanogwr House already benefitting from the refurbishment works and enjoying their updated environment.”

Glanogwr House is also the first Hafod scheme to receive the platinum award. Hafod is currently working towards the Visibly Better standards across their other over 55s accommodation and care homes.

RNIB Cymru’s Director, Ansley Workman, said: “Hafod are deserving recipients of our highest accolade, the platinum Visibly Better award, which recognises those who are providing accessible environments to blind and partially sighted people.

“The changes they’ve made to Glanogwr House will hugely benefit residents with sight loss, making the building a safer and easier place for them to live.

“This is their first award and we really look forward to working with them to bring the Visibly Better standards to more of their schemes in the future and many more award presentations.”

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