By Ewan Foskett
Thursday, June 28, 2012
PUB chain JD Wetherspoon is set to move into a vacant Grade II* listed building in the heart of Royston.
The firm has exchanged contracts on the purchase of the Manor House Club, Melbourn Street, which has sat empty for around a year after declining membership and a cash crisis forced its closure.
Wetherspoon spokesman Eddie Gershon said: “Wetherspoon can confirm that it has exchanged on the purchase of the Manor House Club in Royston.
“The company still needs to complete the deal, however, the fact that it has exchanged, is a very positive move.
“Wetherspoon needs to obtain both planning and licensing permission and will be seeking these in due course.
“The company is as keen as ever to open one of its pubs in Royston, with an investment of more than £1 million and the creation of 40 jobs.”
English Heritage had placed the 18th Century building on its At Risk Register and it is now hoped the building can be saved by the renovation.
The move was welcomed by Rupert Matthews the chairman of the Royston and District Chamber of Commerce who believes a recognisable brand will bring more people into the town.
Rupert Matthews said: “This is really positive, I think big brands come into the town is a good thing.
“I think the move of Costa Coffee has had no negative impact and I have not had any negative feedback from cafes and coffee shops.
“It is positive that a landmark building to be renovated and it is another big brand coming into the town, it means people are more likely to go out in Royston and not just in the Wetherspoon.
“They may go to the new cinema or to have a bite to eat.”