AN ENTERPRISING group of Penarth residents have come up with a unique way to build community spirit.

Tenants living on the St Paul's, St Luke's, St James' and St Peter's estates in Penarth have joined forces with the Vale of Glamorgan Council to provide a ‘POD’ where residents can meet.

The portable office, which arrived last year at the St Luke’s estate, works in the same way as a community hall and has already hosted a range of meetings.

To celebrate its success, the STAR (Saints Tenants and Residents Group) are throwing a party on Bank Holiday Monday (August 30).

Angela Evans, Chair of STAR, said: “I’ve lived on the estate for 16 years and there’s never been a sense of community until recently.

“People didn’t know each other and there was lots of trouble.

“What we’re doing with the POD is getting people together.

“They can talk about their problems and issues and work through them.

“We’ve seen such a big improvement locally, and it’s made the area a safer and happier place to live.”

The office, which is regularly used by health visitors, local councillors and the police, was set up with help and funding from the Vale of Glamorgan Council.

Heather Powney, the council's tenant development support officer, said: “The STAR Group asked whether it was possible to have a meeting place in their area.

"It was agreed that the POD (mobile working unit) would be an excellent resource. It is fire proof, equipped with heating and electricity and can be used by the community to hold meetings, activities and local councillor/police surgeries in the future. “The STAR Group membership has grown and people are now starting to take pride in the area they live, demonstrated by several upgrades including cleanliness and estate issues.” A Fun Day - with face painting, a raffle, food and live music - will be held at the St Luke’s estate on Monday from 1pm.