Work on new Wetherspoons pub to begin within weeks
PUBLISHED: 10:36 14 September 2019
Work on the new JD Wetherspoons pub next to Diss Mere is set to finally start before the end of the year, the site owner has confirmed.
The national pub chain is to begin the ground work on its latest Norfolk pub in Kings Head Yard within the next few weeks.
The £2.7m two-storey pub and restaurant in a striking curved building will feature a mezzanine level and balcony with views across the Mere, a central staircase and an interior design reflecting the town's history of linen making.
The origins of the long-awaited development date back to 2012 when landowner Joe Darrell secured planning permission for a restaurant-bar on the site that is temporarily being used as an RCP car park.
Mr Darrell, whose family company subsequently agreed a long-term lease for the land with Wetherspoons, said final details were now close to completion with the first signs of construction expected soon.
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He said: "We are virtually there now. There are just a couple of legals that need ironing out but they are raring to go and want to start as soon as possible.
"Work will definitely begin well before the end of the year. They want the ground works in before Christmas that is why there is some urgency to sort out the final details and get me to sign on the dotted line."
Wetherspoons were given the green light to build on the site five years ago but changes to the design meant construction was delayed and their permission expired.
The chain's subsequent 2017 plans were approved with conditions including limiting opening hours to between 8am and midnight. The pub is expected to employ 15 full-time staff and 20 part-time.
An artist's impression shows it called The King's Head, the name of the previous watering hole near the site, though this has yet to be confirmed.
Ahead of construction of the pub work has already started on a small retail unit at the entrance to Kings Head Yard, which had originally been envisaged as a fishmongers shop. Two more shops will also be built on the site next to the new pub.
Mr Darrell said: "This will be a little general retail unit for whoever comes along. Something like a florist would be nice, but who knows. The days when landlords could pick and choose tenants are long gone."
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