A NEW wine bar is set to open in the heart of Wrexham city centre with a former footballer at its helm.

Vault33 is coming to the High Street in what will be a new chapter for the building – and its new general manager.

Former Wrexham AFC player Neil Roberts co-owns and manages the new venture, and he can’t wait to get the ball rolling.

He said: "This is a brand new business venture for me and I can't wait to get stuck in. My history lies within the sport industry so this is all still quite foreign.”

Neil started his footballing career with his hometown club Wrexham in 1994 and went on to play for Wigan Athletic, Hull City, Bradford City and Doncaster Rovers, before returning to Wrexham in 2006 where he became team captain. He is also a Welsh international with four caps.

The Leader: Neil Roberts playing for WrexhamNeil Roberts playing for Wrexham (Image: Staff)

But his new venture is a totally different ball game!

"I'm being trained behind the bars in wonderful pubs across Wrexham such as the Pant Yr Ochain, the Golden Lion and even the Turf,” he said. “The support we've received and the links we are already creating with other Wrexham businesses is incredible.

"We're also working with local traders, builders and architects - even our uniforms will be made by a local business. We're also talking to community police officers to guarantee the safety of our customers which is hugely important to me especially having two daughters myself.

"I want to start as I mean to go on. We're in the process of hiring a brilliant team of staff, both younger and more experienced workers so that we can all learn from each other.”

The Leader: 33 High Street, Wrexham33 High Street, Wrexham (Image: Google)

The building, most recently used as Jones Peckover estate agent office space, was bought by friends and new business partners Craig Thomas and Geraint Lewis last year. The pair approached Neil once they had decided to go down the hospitality route and as soon as the planning application was approved in October 2023.

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.

Neil added: "It's my goal that we see businesses in Wrexham continue to thrive and develop. That's also why it's important that we've kept the heritage and beauty of this building and former bank built in 1898. It's where the traditional meets the modern - and I can't wait for everyone to see the final results."

With renovations underway, the bar is expected to open towards the end of March, beginning of April, with a date yet to be confirmed.

The new bar will offer cocktails, upscale ambiance and friendly service to all customers and has already received a lot of well-wishes on social media.


Neil's announcement on Facebook has generated much enthusiasm. In it the bar is described as a place where 'authentic meets modern', and 'every drink is a work of art.'

One Wrexham resident said: "I'm sure it'll be a raging success" and another said "Exciting times ahead!!"

An exact opening date will be confirmed soon on social media.