For more than 150 years, St Mair’s in Aberdare was a fixture of daily life in the town, first as a church and then a popular day centre for older people. This key role at the heart of the community will now continue as the Seymour Street site reopens as an inclusive hub.

St Mair’s Church opened its doors in November 1864, it was built for the Welsh speaking Anglican congregation of Aberdare and served the town for almost 100 years. When the church was demolished in 1963, the site was developed and opened as the St Mair’s Centre, a day centre for older people in the area. Now, following a major refurbishment project, the building will be officially opened on Thursday November 25th as Cynon Linc, a modern hub for the whole community to enjoy.

The grand opening will be conducted by Julie James MS, Minister for Climate Change, who will unveil a commemorative plaque in the foyer. The event will be attended by many of the key stakeholders who helped make Cynon Linc a reality, the guests will enjoy a tour of the building and refreshments from the inhouse kitchen team.

Plans to redevelop St Mair’s date back to August 2018, when older person’s charity Age Connects Morgannwg took over the running of the building. Construction work started in August 2020 and was completed exactly one year later. The Cynon Linc project was developed by a partnership that also included, Rhondda Cynon Taff County Borough Council, Cwm Taff University Health Board, and partners from the third sector and local community.

The vision was to transform the former St. Mair’s Day Centre into a modern and inclusive hub to serve the whole community, and with work now completed Cynon Linc certainly delivers on this vision. The hub includes a large kitchen and coffee shop, doctor’s surgery, over 50s advice and information point, mental health support services and a nail clinic.

Cynon Linc is also the perfect venue for a host of events, classes, and meetings, it has six rooms to hire including a fully accessible main hall, seating up to 248 attendees. The events programme includes everything from fitness classes for the over 50’s and tech classes for beginners, to weekly youth groups and a work club.

Rachel Rowlands is the CEO of Age Connects Morgannwg. “I am so impressed with the redevelopment of Cynon Linc and the work the whole team has done. Despite the extensive challenges created by the pandemic, the project was delivered on time and on budget. The result is a bright, spacious, and welcoming hub that will be a major asset to the whole of the Cynon Valley for many years to come.”

Councillor Nicole Burnett, Chair of the Cwm Taf Morgannwg Regional Partnership Board said:

“As a Regional Partnership Board, which manages £5m of Integrated Care Fund (ICF) Capital monies across the region, it’s always wonderful to see fantastic ICF funded projects come to life. The hub, which received £1.3M of ICF funding, is a truly impressive, and clearly developed with the heart and soul of the community in mind. We know Cynon Linc will hugely benefit the local community and beyond, and we look forward to seeing people enjoying all the facilities it has to offer.”

The renovation of Cynon Linc was funded by The Welsh Government Integrated Care Fund and several other funding bodies, these included The National Lottery Community Fund, Dunhill Medical Trust and Pen Y Cymoedd.

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