A north-east businessman wants to transform an abandoned nightclub into a family restaurant to capitalise on the expected popularity of a new cinema.
Alan Gardiner, who runs A&J Investments, is seeking permission to renovate the former Nemesis Nightclub in the heart of Peterhead.
The premises is above the BrewDog bar which opened in 2018 and beside a former bingo hall which is in the midst of being converted into a cinema.
Mr Gardiner believes the stretch of Marischal Street could soon become a hive of activity and thinks the time is right to turn the “eyesore” former nightspot into an eatery.
The developer hopes to ultimately act as landlord for a family restaurant there.
He said: “There’s a demand for more food and drink places in the town centre and, with its location, I think it could really compliment the new cinema that’s coming to Peterhead as well.
“My hopes would be to attract a restaurant of some kind that would be suitable for families to go to.”
Manager for Rediscover Peterhead Limited, Leslie Forsyth, expressed hope that the venture could contribute to a resurgence of the town centre.
He said: “It’s been identified from a range of studies – and just through talking to people – that there’s a demand for more places for family dining in the town centre.
“High streets were struggling before, and they’re struggling now.
“After lockdown, we will really need something that will keep people in the town centre.
“It’s great that we’ll have the cinema to attract people – but we need something that will keep them there.
“Something like a restaurant will encourage those people to stay a bit longer and browse round some of the shops – rather than just getting in the car and going home.”
The once popular nightclub has been silent since 2012, and has been put up for auction several times.
The venue made headlines in 2009 as a stage for UK songstress Alexandra Burke, who performed there because of her sponsorship with mobile phone company Nokia.
The Arc Cinema chain had hoped to open its branch in the town last month, after carrying out a £2 million refurbishment of the hall next door into a five-screen facility.
Mr Forsyth added: “It feels like a lot is on hold right now, but these ideas could give people something to look forward to.”