SafeSite helping restaurateurs transform heritage seafront shelter

  • 26 Jul 2019

Bistrot Pierre has been granted a long-term lease by Worthing Borough Council to carry out a seafront shelter development – the shelter has been secured with construction hoarding by local firm SafeSite Security Solutions before work starts.

Greig McGarva, Sales Team Leader at SafeSite Security Solutions, commented: “We have been delighted to play a part in clearing and securing the seafront shelter in preparation for its transformation.

“It is a fantastic site and being in such close proximity to the coast it couldn’t be a better spot for residents and tourists enjoying walks along the Promenade or looking to enjoy a meal by the beach.”

About Worthing’s Seafront Investment Plan

Worthing’s prime location between the south coast and South Downs National Park, with direct connections to London, makes it an ideal place to visit and relocate to.

This is reflected in the number and scale of proposed developments across the area – particularly in and around the town’s picturesque seafront. 

In 2017 Adur & Worthing Councils commissioned its Seafront Investment Plan, setting out the strategy for revitalising Worthing’s seafront.

This includes the lido, pier and seafront shelters, which were identified as in need of regeneration to boost the growing tourist economy.

The Plan builds on previous feasibility studies carried out including the 2007 Seafront Strategy, with the aim of creating several new public spaces and amenities in a high-quality setting.

The Plan cites best practice from neighbouring seafronts. In Brighton, the transformation of its iconic Bandstand illustrates how traditional seafront features can be sensitively married with contemporary renovations.

Another example is The West Beach Café in Littlehampton, which has successfully built an attraction in an area set quite apart from the town centre.

Transforming the West Buildings’ Seafront Shelter

Repurposing the existing space and infrastructure along the promenade in Worthing is a key part of providing a more exciting and varied offer to those visiting the seafront.

The West Buildings’ Seafront Shelter has the potential to be brought back into use as a restaurant and café, which would enhance the area and support the town’s burgeoning night-time economy.

Bistrot Pierre, who have premises in South Wales, Birmingham, Nottingham and Bath, have been granted a long-term lease by Worthing Borough Council to convert and expand The West Buildings’ Seafront Shelter into a state-of-the-art restaurant overlooking the beach.

Bistrot Pierre wants to turn the shelter along the Worthing promenade into a café bar on the ground floor with 70 seats, and a 150-seat restaurant on the first floor, with a retractable roof that lowers electronically when the sun is out.

Initial plans were presented by the developer, NextColour Ltd, to the public in summer 2018 ahead of the planning application being submitted. The restaurant is due to open by late 2019 or early 2020, subject to planning permission.

Reactions to the plans

Local councillors have stated they are ‘determined to drive through significant improvements to the seafront’ and ‘want to modernise the seafront offer while not forgetting its traditional delights.’

The restaurant owners have had their ‘sights set on Worthing for some time’ and are ‘delighted to have been selected by Worthing Borough Council to open a bistro in such a great location directly on the seafront.’ 

Sue Potter from Gillespie Yunnie Architects said they hoped to include the shelter’s original columns in the design as a ‘living memory of its past’ and will be addressing how the structure can be built to withstand all the elements in the next stages of the project.

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