Owner reveals plans for Strand ‘grot spot’

Joseph Bulmer

Former Barnstaple hotel and bar set for a new lease of life.

A BARNSTAPLE nightclub owner has revealed plans to transform one of the town’s “forgotten” buildings into a brand new business.

Venue owner Mike Deakin has submitted plans to refurbish the front of the former Inn on the Strand, which has been boarded up since 2000.

Speaking to the Gazette on Monday, Mr Deakin said he was hoping to give a “new look to an old favourite”.

“Subject to planning permission, we are hoping to carefully and sympathetically refurbish the front of the building in keeping with the 1930s street scene,” he said.

“I appreciate that over the years the building has come in for a lot of criticism and has been called a ‘grot spot’ but timing is everything and we hope to be able to open a contemporary new bar in the spring.

“We want to embrace the new caf� culture opportunities on the Strand and hope to be able to add to the vibrancy of the area, which I feel is a greatly underused asset.”

Mr Deakin said he had not decided on a name for the new business but estimated that it would employ between 15 and 20 people.

Work to the exterior of the dilapidated building started on September 3 and Mr Deakin is now seeking permission for the changes from North Devon Council.

Under the proposals, he is proposing to install full length double glazed folding windows and metal balustrades as part of alterations to the existing ground floor “shopfront”.

He also hopes to remove the existing first floor bay windows and re-rebuild the first and second floor elevation.

Alterations to front wall of the property, including full length double glazed sliding doors are also included in the plans.