Business at a revitalised Blackpool landmark is booming with major plans to expand announced.
Richard Taylor, who rescued the former Regent Cinema on Church Street from dereliction, said the success of the emporium he set up on the ground floor means more stalls are now to be opened on the floor above.
The first stalls only opened in April and Mr Taylor says demand has been sky high, with a waiting list of people wanting to sell their wares.
And with the number of customers visiting the new attraction soaring, he is confident of opening up part of the second floor to stalls, too, next year.
The second floor will also house a multi-purpose arts space he is planning for next year to make use of the building’s arts heritage.
He said: “Having traded for just over six months, on November 7, we will be opening the first floor of the building with more stalls which are already all rented out. And we are offering a £50 voucher for the 100th customer through the door on the day .
“The Regent already boasts over 4,300 square feet of stalls selling a great range of antiques, crafts and jewellery and will be adding a further 1,200 square feet when the first floor is opened.
“We have enjoyed a busy and successful summer being frequented by locals and tourists alike. I am really pleased with how the first six months have gone. Selling such a wide range of items from antiques to furniture there really is something for everyone and we hope to build on this when we open the first floor.
“It is also a great opportunity for historians to have a closer look at the craftsmanship of the building and the ornate plasterwork upstairs”.
Mr Taylor brought the old buildingback into use after it was left derelict when Rileys snooker hall closed in 2010.
He said his long term plan was to make the Regent an attraction in its own right with people paying a special visit and spending a few hours there rather than just popping in while shopping.
“When we get the second floor up and running then there should be enough for people to spend three hours, but even now the stall holders and customers love it.”