Town centre 'eyesore' to be redeveloped

DEVELOPERS today said they are hoping to start work “as soon as possible” on converting a former Ipswich nightclub into flats.Bar Fontaine, as it was formerly known, has been empty for more than five years.

DEVELOPERS today said they are hoping to start work “as soon as possible” on converting a former Ipswich nightclub into flats.

Bar Fontaine, as it was formerly known, has been empty for more than five years.

Now plans to change the building into 11 one and two-bedroom flats have been given the go-ahead by Ipswich Borough Council.

Andrew Harding, managing director of developers Deben Holdings Ltd, said: “We're just waiting for our building regulations to come through and as soon as that is done we intend to go out to tender to find a builder.

“I hope it wouldn't take more than six months to finish and we're hoping to start as soon as possible.”

The 1930s mock-Tudor building, in Old Foundry Road, has had various uses over the years, including a restaurant and an antique shop.

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But more recently it has been boarded up and has become unsightly in the eyes of many.

Mr Harding, whose company is based on Ipswich's Cornhill, said the work will be done sympathetically.

He said: “We'll obviously restore its original features while bringing the building up to modern standards.”

Mr Harding said the majority of the work will surround rebuilding internal walls removed when the building became a nightclub.

Michael Cook, of the Ipswich Society, has backed the proposal.

He added: “It is on the society's list of eyesore buildings which we are pressing for action to improve.”

For more information about the development call Deben Holdings Ltd on 01473 217317.