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Agenda Item No. 7


The Vale of Glamorgan Council


Healthy Living and Social Care Scrutiny Committee: 12th February 2018


Report of the Director of Social Services


An Overview of Meals Provision for Adult Residents Within the Vale of Glamorgan


Purpose of the Report

  1. To provide Healthy Living and Social Care Scrutiny Committee with an update following the closure of the Council's Meals on Wheels service.
  2. To advise Healthy Living and Social Care Scrutiny Committee of the exploratory work underway with regards the means of meal provision within other internal services used by people accessing Adult Social Services within the Vale of Glamorgan.


  1. That Healthy Living and Social Care Scrutiny Committee note the content of this report.
  2. That Healthy Living and Social Care Scrutiny Committee endorse the exploratory work underway with regards meal provision for people accessing Adult Social Services within the Vale of Glamorgan and receives a further report in due course.

Reasons for the Recommendations

  1. To provide Healthy Living and Social Care Scrutiny Committee with an update following the recent changes made to the Meals on Wheels service.
  2. To ensure that the Healthy Living and Social Care Scrutiny Committee are aware of the work underway to ensure services remain responsive to the needs of those using them and are consistent with the Council's Reshaping Services agenda.


  1. A report to the former Social Care and Health Scrutiny Committee on 1st February, 2016, provided an update on how the Council's Meals on Wheels Services was being delivered.  The report considered the rationale for alternative ways of meeting the nutritional needs of those who are eligible for care and support from the Social Services Directorate, in response to changing levels of demand for the service.  The report also made a recommendation that a further report be provided regarding potential alternative service models which would be considered by the Scrutiny Committee and Cabinet.
  2. Cabinet considered a further report detailing potential options for the provision of this service on 28th November 2016 and subsequently referred the report to Healthy Living and Social Care Scrutiny Committee.  This was considered at the Committee's meeting on 8th December 2016 where it was resolved to support the implementation of Option 4 (cease the Internal Service and to signpost to alternatives, including a new Social Enterprise).  Cabinet subsequently ratified these changes on the 9th January 2017.
  3. The proposals were consistent with the Council's Corporate Plan, Well-being Outcome 4: An Active & Healthy Vale and sought to safeguard those who are vulnerable and promote independent living.  The report also contributed to the Council's implementation of new ways of working in light of the Social Services and Well-being Act (Wales) Act 2014, with a particular emphasis on provision of information, advice and assistance services and the promotion of preventative services, such as Social Enterprises.
  4. The proposal to close the service enabled the savings target of £30,000 to be achieved which is included in the Directorate's Budget Programme which contributes to the Council's overall Reshaping Services Programme.
  5. This report is a follow up report which provides an update on how the changes have been implemented, as well as setting out plans for further work with regards meal provision within Adult Services.

Relevant Issues and Options

Meals on Wheels Service

  1. The Council's Meals on Wheels service ceased in April 2017, following communication with recipients of the service formerly notifying them of the Council's decision.  Service users were contacted individually to ensure arrangements for alternative provision were put in place so as to ensure those with an assessed need for a hot meal daily continued to have this need met.
  2. When the service ceased there were 45 people in receipt of Meals on Wheels.
  3. Service users were provided with a range of alternatives, such as the Wiltshire Farm Foods company (who provide frozen meals which can be heated at the person's home).  The Council had also undertaken significant work with a Social Enterprise, the Food Shed who at the time did not provide services within the Vale of Glamorgan area but were keen to expand their operation.  Service users were asked whether they wished their personal details to be shared with the Food Shed who could then make contact with them to discuss future provision.
  4. The Food Shed ( is a social enterprise based in Bridgend.  They have developed a partnership with HMP Parc Prison to provide freshly cooked meals daily.  HMP Parc Prison produces the meals which are delivered by drivers who are employed by the Food Shed.  Meals offering meat, fish or vegetarian options and a dessert can be ordered on a short term or more regular basis and are provided on a four week rolling menu.
  5. In March 2017, approximately 41 service users consented that they were happy for their details to be shared with the Food Shed and decided to move to this arrangement.  36 of these service users currently remain active customers with them.
  6. Service Users have continued to be signposted to the Food Shed via Contact OneVale if they contact the Council for this type of service.  It has been reported that only three requests have been received since April 2017.  The Food Shed also accepts referrals directly from family/carers, individuals and health professionals.
  7. The Council has maintained an on-going dialogue with the Food Shed since the Meals on Wheels service ceased to be provided.  The organisation report that customer satisfaction exercises undertaken by the Food Shed have shown that the service they are providing is valued by its customers and many people are happy with the service.
  8. In terms of their future business plan, the Food Shed are looking into sustainability of the service to further reduce their use of grant funding in the longer term.  Their aim is to have lasting impact by continuing the service and developing it further across other boroughs.  The opening of the Fairfield Centre in Maesteg has provided additional opportunities to generate further income which operates a community café and acts as an additional base for the service to provide catering from in addition to HMP Parc Prison.  The Food Shed is intending to expand into the City and County of Swansea in February 2018 and further work is also planned for future coming years.
  9. Wiltshire Farm Foods also operate in the Vale of Glamorgan.  They are based in Cardiff and are one of a number of franchises which are based across the UK.
  10. Wiltshire Farm Foods are primarily a food company offering frozen meals.  They have an extensive range, making approximately 300 main meals in Trowbridge in Wiltshire (within their own kitchens), with the ability to cater for almost any diet including allergens and deliver free on a daily basis.  They have a market leading range of pureed food which has been recognised by the Queens award for innovation in 2016.
  11. In terms of the target population they advise that since 2011 they have covered a total of 47% of their Vale of Glamorgan population through the provision and delivery of frozen meals, the areas they deliver meals are indicated below:

CF61 (Llantwit Major / Marcross)

CF62 (Barry, Rhoose, St. Athan)

CF63 (Barry)

CF64 (Penarth, Dinas Powys and Sully)

CF71 (Cowbridge, Colwinston).


This indicates that individuals / families approach Wiltshire Farm Foods direct in order to provide meals for vulnerable people.


Provision through Third Sector organisations

  1. The Glamorgan Voluntary Service (GVS) have confirmed that a number of third sector organisations provide luncheon clubs and / or meal provision.  An exercise is continuing to identify these organisations and at the time of writing several had returned responses, and were also identified through use of the DEWIS Cymru portal, others were yet to respond.
  2. These include;

Dinas Powys - The Royal Voluntary Service (RVS) provide a Friday lunch club, with transport provided by Dinas Powys Voluntary Concern (DPVC) - 18 regularly attend. Also, a Meet and eat Wednesday lunch club, no transport provided - 20 attend on average, VOGC contribute to the cost of the rental space to facilitate these luncheon clubs to meet.

Penarth - Group 617 monthly lunch club for veterans.

Barry - Castleland Lunch Club meets in Golau Caredig every Friday - 23 attend on average including Golau Caredig residents and some people supported by Scope.

Western Vale - Bethal Church, Llantwit Lunch Club on Friday, transport provided by volunteers - 35 attend on average.

Cowbridge (Llanblethian) - The RVS runs another luncheon club, which VOGC support through rental costs for the town hall. Average 12 attendees per week.

  1. In addition to our own Day Service provision which is outlined later in the report, we have a Letter of Understanding (LOU) with Penarth Live at Home Scheme who operate from Trinity Church in Penarth.  The LOU advises that they run a Lunch Club Monday to Friday.  This is a well used service with Quarter one figures showing that lunch club attendees were 195 in July, 119 in August and 171 in September.
  2. Crossroads Day Centre, based on Barry Island whom we have a LOU will also offer a luncheon club with around 6 attendees in addition to those attending the day service.
  3. Additionally there are third sector cafés that operate within the Vale, these are:
      • Mind in the Vale on Barry Station.
      • Age Connects Senior Health Shop, Holton Road.
      • Rita's Café in Cadoxton.
      • Alzheimers - Ty Hapus Café
      • Plus, various Dementia Cafes.

Day Services Food Provision

  1. In addition to the previous Meals on Wheels service, the Directorate also has catering operations within the Day Services and Residential Care Home parts of the service.  An opportunity to consider the provision of meals within day services has been identified.
  2. The Vale of Glamorgan Council provides hot meals for older people, adults with learning disabilities and adults with physical disabilities across three day services centres; Rondel House, New Horizons, Woodlands (both based in Hen Goleg), Castle Avenue located in Penarth and Trysor O Le (operating from the Hub, Barry).
  3. Meals are cooked at two sites, Rondel House and Hen Goleg covering the outreach centres for which meals are delivered on a daily basis.
  4. In respect of learning disabilities, between 2014 and 2017 work to implement the joint Cardiff and Vale Day Opportunities has brought about significant positive change in the way day opportunities are delivered.  Individuals have been supported to move to alternative opportunities within their communities in order to meet their personal outcomes and further promote independence, with internal day services focussing on meeting the personal outcomes for people with complex needs; this has resulted in a reduction in the number of meals needed.
  5. In order to achieve the savings target associated with the Physical Disabilities Day Services (£60k) the Council has identified an opportunity to consider the potential to change the way that food is provided for older people, people with learning and physical disabilities across the Council with the aim to reduce the costs of meals whilst retaining and, if possible, enhancing quality and choice.
  6. Officers are currently working to analyse the way in which meals are provided within all day services settings, including the choice of meals, the way in which they are prepared and served and in light of the developing work on how these services as a whole are provided in the future.  It is intended that an options appraisal will be completed to appraise the various implications and benefits associated with different ways of working.  These different ways of working could include internal changes, working with a partner or considering a contractual arrangement with an external provider.  The Council will undertake this work in the coming months and provide an update to Healthy Living and Social Care Scrutiny Committee and Cabinet in due course.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

  1. In line with previous budget plans for the Directorate the savings target of £30,000 was achieved following the cessation of the Meals on Wheels Service.
  2. The Directorate's Budget Programme contains savings equating to £320,000 in 2018/19 and it is intended that the review of meal provision across the Adult Social Services service area will identify the potential for financial savings.
  3. The closure of the Meals on Wheels Service had Human Resources and employee relations implications, resulting in change management processes being applied in respect of the staff group.  At the time of closure there were five staff employed in the service.  Of these, one member of staff was successful in applying for a new position within the Food Shed due to their expansion and one other member of staff was successful in applying for a position external to the Authority.
  4. Any changes to the operation of meals provision within the Council's day services will be undertaken in line with the relevant Council policies and procedures (including financial and HR processes).

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

  1. The Council is committed to promoting sustainable development and our understanding of our duties under the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act. This proposal demonstrates the Council's approach to sustainable development and the five ways of working introduced by the Act.  Any proposals will take into consideration the long-term sustainability of meeting client's needs, taking an integrated approach to the way the Council operates and seeking to work with others in a collaborative way.  In doing so, will contribute to the national well-being goals established by the Act, notably a healthier Wales and a Wales of cohesive communities.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

  1. There are no legal implications as a direct result of this report and its recommendations.

Crime and Disorder Implications

  1. There are no crime or disorder implications that should arise as a result of this report.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

  1. There are no equal opportunities implications as a direct result of this report.

Corporate/Service Objectives

  1. This report is consistent with the Council's Corporate Plan (An Active and Healthy Vale) and the Directorate's on-going implementation of the Social Services and Well-being Act.

Policy Framework and Budget

  1. This is a matter for Executive decision by Cabinet.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

  1. Due to the county-wide nature of this report, no Ward Member consultation has been undertaken.  Healthy Living and Social Care Scrutiny Committee will note the consultation work undertaken as part of the changes made to the Meals on Wheels service previously.  Should any changes to other elements of service provision be proposed, appropriate engagement and consultation work will be undertaken and outlined in future reports.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

  1. Healthy Living and Social Care

Background Papers

The Meals on Wheels Service - Social Care and Health Scrutiny Committee 1/2/16,_agendas_and_reports/reports/scrutiny_sch/2016/16-02-01/Meals-on-Wheels-Service.aspx

Reshaping Services - Review of Meals on Wheels Service, Cabinet 28/11/16

Reshaping Services - Review of Meals on Wheels Service, Cabinet 9/1/17

Contact Officer

Suzanne Clifton, Head of Adult Services.

Officers Consulted

Operational Manager, Policy and Performance

Operational Manager, Accountancy

Responsible Officer

Lance Carver, Director of Social Services