Proposed gin & tonic bar in Northampton town centre granted planning permission

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A vacant gothic building will be converted into a gin & tonic bar on St Giles Street after the venture was given planning permission.

The former 19th-century Weights and Measures building, located between The Wig and Pen and The Optimist pubs, will become the home of another drinking establishment.

Councillors on Northampton Borough Council’s planning committee unanimously voted through the planning application from Mr Cillian Hickey, which will finally put the building to use after 18 months of it being vacant. In recent years it had operated as a volunteer bureau and a hairdressers.

The proposal is for the change of use of the ground and first floors of the premises for the use of the building as a gin and tonic bar, which agenda papers said would ‘lend itself to a more niche market, rather than a chain public house.’

Submitted details state that the bar will be open every day from 6pm until 11pm, and the applicant is not proposing to offer any prepared food at the premises.

Both the ground and first floor would have a music area, assuming the scheme is granted a premises licence to serve alcohol and play music.

The report in front of the committee added: “It is considered that the proposed use would not have any detrimental impact on the character and historic interest of the building or the conservation area, whilst also ensuring a viable use for the building.”

The committee unanimously voted through the proposals on Tuesday evening (October 23).