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Plans to revamp town hall bar look set to go ahead

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A leading Dudley borough entertainment venue is set to be revamped if plans are the given the green light later this month.

A cash injection of £650,000 could transform the bar and dining facilities at Dudley Town Hall if Dudley Council’s cabinet approve plans at its meeting on June 27.

The Dudley Council-run venue is one of the borough’s top live entertainment venues and regularly attracts big names from the comedy circuit and shows from the entertainment world.

While the venue is drawing in big crowds to match, there is no dining area and its bar facilities fail to meet the needs of visitors, with many choosing to go elsewhere before, during and after shows.

To bring facilities up to scratch and to encourage people to use the venue’s facilities, the council’s cabinet is expected to approve plans to invest funds to completely overhaul an area of the town hall, which will see improved disabled access, a modern commercial kitchen and a new bar and dining area.

Councillor Ian Kettle, cabinet member for regeneration and enterprise, said:

Dudley Town Hall has positioned itself as the borough’s premier live entertainment venue, attracting some of the biggest names in comedy and entertainment.
We’re really proud that the venue is thriving but we know we need to do more to give the visitors the best experience and futureproof the venue for many years to come and boost the town’s night time economy.
This is a significant investment but we are confident it will be worth every penny and we’ll be able to recoup it through visitors spending more at the bar and on food provided at the new facility.

These proposals were first put to cabinet earlier this year and have since been reviewed by the place scrutiny committee. The committee supported the plans but with the condition that further research was carried out to ensure best value for money. A revised business plan has been put to cabinet.

The revamp of the town hall is part of a wider project, which will also see the former Dudley Museum brought back into use as a training facility. The cost of the combined project is £1.5million of which £150,000 will come from transformation reserves and £1.35million from the disposal of assets no longer required.

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