Care & Repair
Conference 2023

The State of Older People’s Housing in Wales

28 September 2023, Hilton Hotel Cardiff

Thank you to everyone who joined us for the biggest event in Wales dedicated to older people’s housing.

We are grateful to our conference sponsored by Wales & West Utilities.

We would love to have your feedback on the conference, please use the button below to access the feedback form.

Photos - Conference 2023

Inaccessible, damp, cold, and disrepair are just some of the problems faced by older homeowners every day. The Care & Repair Conference 2023 will explore the issues, support available, and what more we need to do to help our older generation live in decent homes.

Who should attend?

The conference is for anyone interested in how housing, health and social care connect, or who wants to join the conversation about the wellbeing of older people in Wales. This includes:

  • Housing professionals
  • Health and social care workers
  • Third sector workers
  • Local Government colleagues
  • Care & Repair colleagues


The Care & Repair Conference 2023 will feature guest speakers, workshops, discussion panels and more. The full programme will be announced shortly, but we are pleased to have the following guest speakers confirmed:

  • Julie James MS, Minister for Climate Change
  • Heléna Herklots CBE, the Older People’s Commissioner for Wales
  • Alicja Zalesinska, Tai Pawb, Chief Executive
  • Ben Saltmarsh, National Energy Action, Head of Wales 
  • Nicola Brimblecombe, London School of Economics 
  • Chris Jones, Care & Repair Cymru, Chief Executive,
  • Matt Dicks, Chartered Institute of Housing Cymru, Director
  • Gwynne Jones, former Managing Director at Cartrefi Conwy, Chair of Conwy and Denbighshire Care & Repair 
  • Ian Baxter and Libby Pearson, The Purple List Theatre Company


The conference will take place at the Hilton Hotel in Cardiff. The full address is: Hilton Cardiff, Kingsway, Greyfriars Rd, Cardiff CF10 3HH

More information about the venue can be found on the Hilton website.

Main Speakers

Heléna Herklots CBE

Heléna is the Older People’s Commissioner for Wales – an independent statutory role established in law to protect and promote older people’s rights. She took up post in 2018 after over 30 years working on ageing and older people’s issues. Starting her career working directly with older people and their families in day centres and care homes, she has influenced public policy, campaigned for change and developed and provided support services for older people.

Julie James MS

Julie James was born in Swansea but spent significant portions of her youth living around the world with her family. Until she was elected as Member of the Senedd for Swansea West, Julie was a leading environmental and constitutional lawyer. Prior to this, she was assistant chief executive at Swansea Council. Julie was appointed Minister for Climate Change on 13 May 2021.

Matt Dicks

Matt is the national director of CIH Cymru and leads the team in Wales, Matt took his current role armed with a breadth of knowledge of the Welsh policy landscape following 17 years of working as a senior communicator at the heart of Welsh civic and political life. After seven years as a Political Correspondent for ITV Wales, he joined the National Assembly for Wales (now Welsh parliament) as its head of news.

Alicja Zalesinska

Alicja is the CEO of Tai Pawb, an organisation promoting equality and social justice in housing in Wales. Her previous roles include that of an assistant director of Race Equality First and a researcher for the financial sector. Alicja has worked in the third sector for 16 years. Born and educated in Poland she made Wales her home 19 years ago.

Ruth Power

Ruth is the CEO of Shelter Cymru. She has enacted a commitment to social justice in various service delivery, policy and leadership roles in the third and statutory sectors. She started out in local authority and housing association housing and homelessness services in Cardiff and London, and then set up and ran a women’s refuge, and a teenage mother and baby unit for a black-led housing association. She chairs Homes for All Cymru and sits on the Ending Homelessness National Advisory Board.

Nigel Winnan

Nigel is the Customer and Social Obligations Manager at Wales & West Utilities, responsible for all customer services. Wales & West Utilities own and operate the gas network across Wales and the south west of England, supplying 2.4m domestic homes and business. In addition to identifying and looking after customers during emergency, planned and connection work, a number of partnerships such as with Care & Repair Cymru allow additional support to be provided to priority customers.

Conference Exhibitors

Solon Security

Solon is recognised as the UK’s leading supplier of quality crime prevention and community safety products. We offer an unrivalled selection of innovative products and have extensive experience of assisting with target-driven campaigns and initiatives. We supply a wide range of quality assistive living products, which include handrail brackets, key safes and various other minor adaptation items.


We believe that everyone has the right to live their best life, regardless of the challenges they face in their intimate toileting needs. We recognise the important role our products and services play in the lives of our customers and this drives us on in continuing to provide the highest quality products and the best possible customer care.


The Educ8 Group has an unrivalled track record of delivering high quality vocational training programs, including Kick-start, ReAct for those who’ve been made redundant, traineeships and Apprenticeships, to employers of all sizes, from micro organisations, through to SME’s and global multi-nationals corporations.

Key Safe

We’re The Key Safe Company - home to the original police preferred key safes, and UK’s most secure mechanical key safe, ark Tamo™. As providers of high-quality access solutions that complement and allow the delivery of today’s enhanced care technology, we deliver security and peace of mind - enabling better lives by empowering people to remain as independent as possible.


Easiaccess are the UK’s leading modular access company, manufacturing, supplying and installing nationwide. We pride ourselves on understanding the needs of our customers, having worked in this specialist field for over 20 years. Our metal modular systems have a fully adjustable design, providing flexibility to suit any building and space.


Tunstall has been at the forefront of technology innovation for health, housing and social care for over 65 years, growing to become a UK manufacturer with a global presence. Its pioneering software, hardware and services enable providers to deliver integrated, efficient and person-centred care in the community, and empower people to live more independently and with an improved quality of life.


The Nest scheme offers a range of free, impartial advice and, if you are eligible, a package of free home energy efficiency improvements such as a new boiler, central heating, insulation, or solar panels. This can lower your energy bills and benefit your health and wellbeing.

Wales & West Utilities

At Wales & West Utilities, our dedicated colleagues do their best to keep our 7.5 million customers safe and warm. We respond to gas emergencies, invest £2m every week across our network, connecting new homes and businesses, and upgrading metal gas pipes to new plastic ones so the communities we serve receive a safe and reliable gas supply for generations to come.

Stroke Association

Post stroke information and advice. We also have groups and clubs as well as activities running across Wales. We, as an organisation campaign for improved stroke services, fund research projects and have a number of volunteer opportunities.


AKW, UK’s leading provider of accessible bathrooms and kitchens for people with reduced mobility, enable people to live more independently in their own homes. Now offering even more choice to create beautiful, contemporary, and functional bathrooms with our recently extended product portfolio thanks to the company’s acquisition of Contour Showers Limited.

South Wales Fire Service

SWFRS want residents to feel safe at home, this is not just about the building you live in. We take a person centred approach to make sure you are as safe as you can be in your own home. During the visit we can look at the home, the person, and their behaviours.

P4B Law Limited

P4B Law are a specialist Employment Law and HR Practice. Providing fixed monthly fee support, one off project work and employment tribunal defence. We are recognised leading specialists in our field. Formed in 2006, we are South Wales based and count a number of Care & Repair agencies amongst our clients.

Tai Pawb

Tai Pawb works to advance equality in housing in Wales. We imagine a Wales where everyone has the right to a good home. We shape the change by influencing decision makers at the highest level We make the change by supporting our members to advance equality on the ground. We be the change by walking the talk in our organisation.


Visibly Better provides social housing providers and care home staff with the skills and knowledge to meet the individual needs of the increasing number of residents living with sight loss.


Sarabec has over 40 years’ experience working with people who have hearing loss, providing a wide selection of products to help them keep safe and independent in their own home. These include TV listeners, amplified telephones, extra loud doorbells, alerting systems for smoke alarms, door entry and telephones, alarm clocks and baby monitors.

Conference Sponsor

We are proud to have Wales & West Utilities as our conference sponsor. They are a valued partner of Care & Repair Cymru and of our fuel poverty work.

Visit the Wales & West website

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