27 Sep

Credit: Kris Butler

Colonel James Phillips, the independent Veterans Commissioner for Wales joined veterans and their families at The Mill in Cardiff as part of his visit to the country.

The Mill, in Canton, is the fourth community housing project that the Welsh Veterans Partnership has used to provide to those leaving the armed forces with a high-quality home.

Mr Phillips, who was appointed to the role back in March last year, witnessed firsthand the collaborative success between the Welsh Veterans Partnership, and organisations Tirion Homes and Lovell to make the project possible.

The Mill provides a safe community that gives 15 veterans and their families the opportunity to live in new, affordable homes, as well as being provided with wellbeing, mental health and transition support from the Partnership.

Most recently, two Fijian veterans, who have served in the Welsh family of Regiments, moved into The Mill. 

During his visit, Colonel Phillips said:

"The Mill has provided veterans with quality homes, not just accommodation like those provided at crisis by a number of other organisations in Wales, but instead real quality homes where they can be stable and then can spring forward to live their best lives.

"This has been made possible because of the partnership we see here with Lovell, Welsh Veterans Partnership, Tirion and Cadwyn."

The work undertaken by the Welsh Veterans Partnership and its collaborative model looks to embed the military covenant into its work, with organisations like Tirion and Lovell, meaning that it can offer a new start to those leaving the armed forces.

Colonel Phillips (left) met with two veterans in their homes during his visit - Credit: Kris Butler

On the day, Colm Price, Coordinator for the Welsh Veterans Partnership, said:

"We're delighted to welcome Colonel Phillips to The Mill and for him to meet with the veterans living in this thriving community. Through our work with Tirion and Lovell, we have been able to ensure that those leaving our armed forces have somewhere to build a new life outside of the service and The Mill community is one of those places."

During his visit, the Commissioner met with two veterans in their homes to hear their stories on leaving the armed forces, and to understand how the Welsh Veterans Partnership is helping in areas such as healthcare and mental health provision, housing and employment.

Chief Executive for Tirion Homes, David Ward, commented:

"The veterans and their families are a great addition to the community at The Mill and they are helping to build an engaged, inclusive community that cares about the neighbourhood in which they live.

"We continue to support the Welsh Veterans Partnership in providing homes where those that have served can positively transition into the next chapters of their lives both at The Mill and our other developments across South Wales."

The Mill has transformed the former paper manufacturing site into a thriving community of 800 homes. Lovell has completed 358 homes for private sale and Tirion over 300 affordable homes, with the rest to be completed over the next year.

WATCH: See how the project has turned into a new thriving community

Geraint Thomas, Senior Site Manager at Lovell, said:

"We were honoured to have welcomed Colonel James Phillips to The Mill to find out more about the collaboration between Lovell, Tirion Homes and the Welsh Veterans Partnership. Our collective goal is to make the transition from active service to veteran as smooth and comfortable as possible for those that call The Mill home."

Following the success of the veteran community in Canton, Tirion and the Welsh Veterans Partnership recently welcomed two veterans and their families to Royal Victoria Court in Newport, another development project to begin expanding the veterans community further.

For more information about The Mill Living, visit www.themill-living.co.uk

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