Former Norwich cinema transformed into ‘boutique’ bowling alley
- Credit: Copyright: Archant 2018
A former Norwich cinema is undergoing a transformation to reopen as a 'boutique' bowling alley.
Bowling House will offer food, beer, wine and cocktails on its five lanes when it opens in the old Regal Cinema premises in Dereham Road on Saturday, March 24.
Managing director Jack Thompson said: 'We're so excited to be bringing something new and unique to Norwich. The building has been totally transformed and will be unrecognisable when it's finished.
'We've assembled a great team and we can't wait to open the doors. It's been a really quick turnaround, work started in January so they've done a really good job. It's a really nice building, it just needed some TLC.
'We can't wait to get started and show everyone what we've been working on.'
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Originally the Regal Cinema, the building housed a bingo hall and casino before becoming derelict. It was then taken over by the Wetherspoons pub chain, which opened it as the City Gates pub in 1999. The building has remained empty since an all-you-can eat Asian buffet, Merge, closed its doors in November 2016.
The Merge restaurant hit headlines in 2015 as one of only a handful of venues in the city to receive a zero hygiene rating. While it had soon turned around its rating, it eventually closed its doors at the end of 2016.
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Norwich City Council approved the application for Bowling House Ltd on August 18 last year.
The set up will be more adult orientated and it will be open from 12pm to 11pm, Monday to Friday, and 10am to midnight on Saturday and Sunday.
In a planning statement to Norwich City Council last year, agent McArthur Tring said: 'The applicants intend to invest in the property and re-open it as a boutique restaurant/bowling alley.
'Pre-application discussions took place between the applicants and the local planning authority where it was established that there is no objection to the principle of such a use.'
Booking lines are now open for the bowling alley, for more information visit www.bowlinghouse.co.uk, call 01603 397412 or email email@example.com