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Dated flats set for modernisation

04 May 2024 3 minute read
Council flats in Croft Street, Swansea, which are due for a major makeover. Images: Richard Youle

Richard Youle Local Democracy Reporter

A city’s dated high-rise flats are to be modernised inside and out as part of a multi-million pound council investment.

Two 14-storey blocks on Croft Street, Dyfatty, along with two smaller blocks, are to be re-clad and have new kitchens, bathrooms and fire safety systems installed.

The council said work was expected to start later this year and that when it’s finished some 18 months later, residents of the 100-plus flats would see their properties looking similar to upgrades completed in nearby Matthew Street.

Entry doors are to be controlled by tenants and staff using fob key systems, and there will also be video call access control as a further security measure.

All but one tree around the flats are to be retained and 18 new ones planted along with patches of wildflower meadow. Funding for the work will come from tenants’ rents and Welsh Government grants.


Cllr Andrea Lewis, cabinet member for service transformation, said: “While it is inevitable there will be some disruption for tenants for a project of this size and complexity, our contractors will be doing all they can to keep it to the minimum possible and residents will be kept informed of progress at every stage.”

Steven Olsen has lived in a fifth-floor flat on Croft Street since 2018 and claimed that he’d experienced water ingress problems from the outset. He said he regularly reported these, and that although workmen had visited on occasions the problems had only recently been resolved.

He also claimed his two-bedroom flat had mould, and that the main stairwell had flooded “like a waterfall” two years ago. “When the repairmen come, they’re great, but it feels like the buck gets passed,” he said.


Lee Davies lives below Mr Olsen and said a hole in his ceiling had just been repaired some six months after it appeared due to water damage.

Mr Davies also claimed his flat had damp. He said he looked forward to the planned investment in the building.

Mr Davies said he didn’t know anyone in the high-rise when he moved there, but that he chatted to neighbours. “It’s all right here – everybody says hello to everyone,” he said.

Welcoming the planned investment, ward councillor David Phillips said some tenants had been extremely patient.

“I’m delighted that the council is going forward with this project,” he said. “This work is long overdue. The building desperately needs bringing up-to-date. It will be a quality addition to our housing stock.”

Energy efficient

Cllr Phillips said the authority, which has spent more than £500 million upgrading council homes over the past decade or so, faced a difficult financial climate.

Cllr Lewis said a further £250 million would be spent in the coming five years making council properties more energy efficient.

Once the Croft Street project is finished, the planning and construction teams will start work at Griffith John Street to complete the refurbishment of all the flats in the Dyfatty area.

Cllr Lewis said: “We’re confident that when completed, residents will be proud of what’s been achieved.”

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