Northampton town centre Italian restaurant to close down after Easter

Artist impression of the proposed redevelopment of Fish Street and Dychurch Lane
Artist impression of the proposed redevelopment of Fish Street and Dychurch Lane

An Italian restaurant in Northampton that has been a staple in the town's Mediterranean dining for more than 20 years is to close after Easter, its owner has said.

Papa Cino's, in Dychurch Lane, will shut because it is part of the plans to convert the restaurant and the former council offices next door (opposite the Grade II listed City Buildings in Fish Street) into a new eatery and student accommodation.

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However Stewart Wright, who also owns Nuovo in Abington Street, said there was a possibility Papa Cino's could make a comeback as part of the development, perhaps in a different format.

"The lease came to an end towards the end of last year, and with the development happening above us it has come to its natural conclusion," said Stewart.

"We have had a great business there for 20-odd years."

He added: "It’s been fantastic - the town has supported us really well bearing in mind we're a basement restaurant and you can’t see us very well.

"If another opportunity presents itself, we will probably put our hat in the ring."

Last November, planning permission was granted to convert and extend the former council office building at 14 Fish Street and Papa Cino's into a new restaurant accessed via Dychurch Lane at ground floor level.

The new eatery would have a glazed shopfront and an outdoor, canopied seating area on Fish Street.

Twenty student en-suite bedrooms will be created within three apartments on the second floor, with entrances on Fish Street and Dychurch Lane.

"This is a prominent and attractive building at the corner of Fish Street and Dychurch Lane that makes a positive contribution to the character and appearance of this part of Derngate Conservation Area," wrote a borough council officer in the planning application.

"The formation of the main entrance into the restaurant from Dychurch Lane will result in loss of some original fabric but the impact is acceptable and justified as a means of bringing the ground floor into viable use."