A national charity which supports people with complex disabilities and acquired brain injuries has opened its first centre in Wales.

National Star, established almost 50 years ago, has created its new centre at Mamhilad Park Estate in Pontypool, to offer its highly individualised service.

Based in Gloucestershire, National Star has opened its first day education provision in Wales for post-19 year olds with profound and multiple learning difficulties and complex disabilities.

The new centre has been established by the charity which marks its 50th anniversary in 2017, in 3,300 sq ft of space at the Torfaen location. Initially six jobs with some additional part time support from other roles have been created at the new centre. This will increase as the provision becomes established and expands.

David Ellis, chief executive of National Star, said: “The rural location at Mamhilad Park Estate is ideal for our needs. National Star at Mamhilad has a modern sensory classroom and provides individualised learning programmes. Learners can also access physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy and psychological and behavioral support.

“We plan to expand the provision to meet unmet need and hope to be working with up to 16 young people with disabilities in the future.

“We were attracted to the Mamhilad Park Estate due to its wonderful rural location, the quality of the premises and building layout. Mamhilad Park Estate owners Johnsey Estates’ desire to work collaboratively with National Star was an important element and enabled the charity to launch in less than four months.”

James Crawford, chief executive of Johnsey Estates, which owns Mamhilad Park Estates, said: “We undertook a comprehensive refurbishment of the premises which was all carried out by our in house team within a very tight timescale. It really was a sensational turn round performance from our team at Mamhilad Park Estate led by our property manager Russell Nutman.

“National Star was initially attracted to the rural and peaceful location. The charity had specific and specialist requirements which we were happy to accommodate. We look forward to working closely with National Star as their service develops and grows in the future. We expect the charity to increase its presence on site and to form part of the Mamhilad Park Estate community.”

National Star supports people with complex disabilities and helps them to live life as independently and enjoyably as possible. The charity runs a similar education day provision in Hereford. It runs a residential provision in Gloucestershire as well as vocational courses and work programmes across England. Every year National Star supports 1,600 people with disabilities in England and Wales. It provides full and part-time and residential and day courses.

National Star also plans to launch its Steps into Work Traineeship, a six-month course for people aged 16 to 18 who are not in education or training. The traineeships are a stepping stone to paid work, an apprenticeship or further vocational education or training.

National Star invested heavily in the IT learning environment, a range of sensory equipment, life skills kitchen resources, personal care facilities. Johnsey Estates has similarly invested in the layout and fabric of the building prior to leasing it to National Star. The Welsh language and culture will form a key part of the programme and will include literacy, numeracy and IT.