Old Bank of England, JSM Group, p planning docs

JSM Company Group wants to turn the former bank into a restaurant. Credit: via planning docs

Liverpool’s old Bank of England could become restaurant

JSM Company Group’s proposals to transform the grade one-listed building are set to be approved by the city council at a planning committee meeting next Tuesday.

Wroot Design is the architect behind the scheme, which would see new life breathed into the former Bank of England building at 31 Castle Street. The former bank has been vacant since TSB Bank left in the 1990s.

Proposals for the three-storey building include the conversion of the ground- and first-floor levels to deliver a restaurant area and central bar, complete with private dining spaces.

Downstairs, the basement would house the kitchens and other back-of-house facilities, while storage and office space would be provided upstairs.

The existing disused car park space would also be altered to build a retractable glass section to be used as a bar in the summer.

As the Bank of England building is a grade one-listed property, only certain alterations will be permitted. The property was built in 1845 and remains “architecturally in good order”, according to a heritage impact assessment submitted by Townscape.

The main building’s elevations are to remain unaltered, while the additional extension attached to the rear is to have a new roof and new window openings created in two elevations.

Officers have recommended that councillors approve the scheme. This recommendation comes despite a number of concerns raised, most notably by councillors Nick Small and Christine Banks, who have highlighted the potential negative impact of the project on neighbouring residents.

To find out more about the plans, search for application numbers 22F/0422 and 22L/0469 on Liverpool City Council’s planning portal.

JSM has a wide portfolio across the city. Last September, the company was granted planning permission to transform the former NatWest building across the road at 20-34 Castle Street into a 92-bedroom hotel.

In October, JSM, along with Greenwood Developments, bought the Cavern Walks shopping centre for £7m for its conversion into a hotel.

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What a surprise, Nick ‘NIMBY’ Small objected to this. Can councillors not grow a backbone and explain to residents that the wider public benefits of returning a Grade I listed building, which has laid vacant in the city centre for nearly 3 decades, outweigh their concerns about noise and disturbance?

By Anonymous

Wroot design is a good architect and will do this justice, but once again it’s the same councillors objecting to development in the city centre, where a certain about of noise should be expected. Councillor Small was against Hooters even though it’s just a bar not a strip joint, he needs to get about more and look at places like Hamburg a thriving city with nightlife and a flexible attitude.

By Anonymous

If this fails to get approved because of Nick Small’s objections then he should be relieved of his duties as a cabinet member.
Good luck to the developers.

By Liverpool4Progress

So if I’ve got this right, the councillor whose portfolio includes regeneration and investment is objecting to the redevelopment of a long-empty Grade I listed building in the heart of the city’s entertainment and business zone because a handful of residents ‘may’ be disturbed by noise? Poor Liam Robinson: he has a mountain to climb with colleagues like that.

By Anonymous

Please reach out to Cllr Nick Small the Cabinet member for growth and economy for an interview, he seems to object to most developments would be interesting to know why.

By Simon Clark

Although Mr Small and Ms Banks won their seats fairly in the City Centre North ward at the recent council elections just how representative are they of the electorate. Figures shows there were 4,690 registered to vote, and of those only just over 1,500 did, and of these 466 voted for Ms Banks and 373 for Mr Small.
Therefore she represents about one-tenth of the electorate and he a bit less, and they have the ability to wage campaigns, like this one regarding this restaurant proposal, on behalf of a small number of people in the local area giving off the impression they are at one with a majority of people in the ward when nothing could be more further from the truth.

By Anonymous

@anonymous, re voting turn out. Very true and one of the reasons why LCC has such a poor representation of councillors. If only more people got off their armchairs and voted we may have a different council make up instead of the current party and all the issues they bring. So it is the lazy electorate who cause this much to the dismay of people who care.

By Liverpolitis

Anon 10:55 also needs to get out more if they think they need to go as far as Hamburg to see what vibrant and flexible cities look like. Even Preston seems to have a more progressive attitude.

By Anonymous

Surely getting out more is going to Hamburg, while getting out, but less so, is going to Preston.
Depending on where you start of course.

By Anonymous

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