AMBITIOUS plans to bring much needed affordable housing into the heart of St Davids have taken a step forward.

A public meeting was held in the city in October, during which presentations were given LA Architects of Brighton and Dave Palmer of the Wales Co-operative Centre.

The aim was to establish whether there was public support for the community-led scheme, which as well as 100 affordable homes, included a new public swimming pool following the closure of the old facility in 2009.

County Councillor David Lloyd said: “A large turnout of local people and organisations revealed that there was widespread support for the project on which basis it was decided to progress to the next stage which would be the preparation of a business plan to evaluate the financial viability.”

The first draft of the business plan has now been prepared, thanks to funding from the Welsh Government.

Cllr Lloyd said: “Although in their early stages, the figures indicate that the project is viable. Work in the New Year will refine the business plan prior to seeking funding for the scheme. Should this stage be successfully completed the next all important stage would be to proceed to making the planning application.”

The current model for the project is for the development land at Glasfryn Road to be held by a Community Land Trust, which is a non-profit organisation made up of volunteers. Such Trusts are designed to enable local people to take control of their future in the face of losses to local services and the unavailability of affordable housing.

It is intended to call a public meeting at 7pm onTuesday, January 20 for people who want to find out more and who are interested in becoming trustees.

Cllr Lloyd said: “If you have an interest in becoming involved in this important work, either because you have the relevant skills and experience, or simply because you have a passion to make a difference in the community then get in touch with me without delay."

He added: "The whole thrust of the project is to underpin a sustainable community in the St Davids peninsula, protecting its schools, its identity and culture, driven and owned by local people and ground-breaking in Wales.