Historic Blackpool club to be eatery

An artist's impression of how the new restaurant will look when it's finished
An artist's impression of how the new restaurant will look when it's finished
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The former Liberal club in Blackpool town centre will open up as an Italian restaurant following a £700,000 renovation.

Workmen have been installing a new glass front on the locally listed three-storey building in Victoria Street in recent weeks.

We are looking forward to opening Prezzo in Blackpool.

They are transforming the old club - which last housed fashion retailer Republic - into a Prezzo restaurant.

The Italian chain already has around 200 branches nationwide, including one in St Annes, and has now chosen Blackpool as part of its expansion programme.

Spokesman Eddie Gershon said: “We are looking forward to opening our first Prezzo restaurant in Blackpool.

“Blackpool is a vibrant town and we are confident the new restaurant will appeal to locals as well as holidaymakers.”

The restaurant is set to open on Tuesday, November 10 and will employ 15 workers. It will cater for up to 82 guests.

Prezzo’s menu currently offers a range of popular Mediterranean dishes, including pizzas, calzone, pasta, risotto, and salads.

It also serves up vegetarian, gluten free, and lactose free options.

Prezzo had to submit a special heritage statement before getting permission to install a new shop front on the 116-year-old building.

The stucco-fronted structure, built using stone from Nelson and Accrington and part of the Houndshill Shopping Centre, was given heritage status two years ago.

It had been empty since Republic left in February last year and had previously been developed in 2008 to ‘provide a modern town centre retail and leisure facility’.

Prezzo considered comments made by planning officials and the Blackpool Civic Trust and amended its original plans so the entrance would be in the middle of the building to ‘reflect the symmetry of the upper floors.’

“It is clearly evident the building has some historical and architectural significance on the upper floors, but it is also clear the building has experienced significant alternations during its history, particularly at ground floor level,” planners Pegasus Group, acting on behalf of Prezzo said.

“The upper floors, with their stucco-clad, triple bay frontage hold most significance.”