Work is underway to convert part of the Hop Inn pub in Blackpool into a dental surgery at a cost of £3.5m – but the historic frontage of the former hostelry is being retained.
The scheme is part of a bigger £100m investment to build a seven storey office block on land between East Topping Street, Cookson Street, King Street and Deansgate.
It is hoped to begin construction of the offices in March or April next year as part of the third phase of the Talbot Gateway.
The King Street dental practice is among buildings earmarked for demolition to make way for the redevelopment, and will be relocated to the Hop Inn.
Town hall chiefs have appointed the Blackpool Local Education Partnership, set up to handle real estate, as its strategic partnership contractor to undertake the detailed design and construction required to convert the Hop Inn.
Arrangements are also being made to provide a temporary relocation site for the dental practice if necessary while work is underway.
A council report says: “In order to secure the Talbot Gateway phase three development it is imperative that the council has vacant possession of the land as detailed in the planning application.”
It added the dental surgery “must be relocated in the next eight months in order to deliver the new office building in sufficient time to meet the prospective tenant’s lease expiry deadlines.”
The report says it “is anticipated that the work on the new office block will start in March /April 2022”.
It adds: “The total estimated cost to undertake the enabling work, detailed design and construction work required to convert part of the old Hop Inn into a dental surgery is £3.5m.”
Planning permission was granted in March for the conversion of the locally listed Hop Inn.
The front facade of the building in its three storey form will be retained as a focal point for the public realm areas between it and the new offices.
A two to three storey extension will be built on the back of the building, with other parts of the back of the former pub demolished to make way for a surface-level car park.