PERMISSION has been granted for a new wine bar in the heart of Wrexham city centre.

Wrexham Council’s planning department has approved plans to transform the vacant ground floor of 33 High Street into a bar.

The building is currently empty, and most recently used as Jones Peckover estate agent office space.

A separate planning application is currently in the pipeline seeking to convert the upper floors of the building into Airbnb apartments.

A design, access and heritage impact statement that was submitted by HDS Architectural Services with the application says: “The building to be redeveloped is currently empty, its last use was as an estate agent with additional office space above.

“The change of use involves developing the ground floor into a wine bar. Numerous shops, restaurants and public spaces are within close walking distance with amenities to suit the proposals already existing or being developed nearby.

“The proposed development positively utilises a vacant space within an already established area, making use of a derelict building within the newly granted city.”

The Leader: Inside the former bank at 33 High Street, WrexhamInside the former bank at 33 High Street, Wrexham (Image: Wrexham Council planning documents)

Built in 1912 by Grayson and Ould, Architects, for the Bank of Liverpool, the building is part of a number of surrounding protected buildings that fall within the Wrexham Town Centre conservation area.

According to the plans, inside on the ground floor the old office space is to be opened up to create a spacious bar area with lots of seating and a main central service area.

The layout will provide a space where patrons can enjoy a drink and conversation and will make the most of the high ceilings and period features that are unique to the property.

Designated as a Grade II listed building in 1980, the reason given for listing by Cadw is that the building is “a good example of early 20th century commercial architecture, forming part of an important group of commercial buildings.”

The architectural style of the building is based on the ‘Palazzo style’, which refers to a style from the 19th and 20th centuries based upon the palaces of wealthy Italian families of the Italian Renaissance.

The planning statements add: “The proposal provides a new use for listed buildings which will help to ensure that they are maintained and preserved for future generations.

“It is considered that the proposals are sympathetic to the setting, will have a minimal impact on the surroundings and are appropriate in planning terms.”

Wrexham Council’s planning department has given the green light for the change of use, in a delegated decision signed off by the authority’s chief planning officer David Fitzsimon.

A decision has yet to be made on the Airbnb plans for the upper floors of the building.