THE only bowling alley in Hartlepool has suddenly closed – on the same day land owners revealed plans to breathe new life into a retail park.
Staff at the UK Superbowl, in Tees Bay Retail Park, were shocked to go into work yesterday morning to find contractors dismantling lanes and other facilities in the unit.
The Mail understands that staff were given the news that the bowling alley would be closing six weeks ago and were given 12 weeks notice until early January - when they believed the facility would be open until.
However the alley closed with immediate effect yesterday.
Mason & Partners, which owns the Tees Bay Retail Park land, confirmed the closure to the Mail and revealed that Home Bargains will be taking over the unit next year and the number of people employed will be “substantial”.
However a spokeswoman for Home Bargains said she was unable to confirm or deny the opening of a store in Hartlepool.
Mason & Partners also revealed to the Mail that a planning application was lodged on Friday that will “completely transform” Tees Bay Retail Park.
The chartered surveyors and commercial property consultants firm plan to install new signage on to all of the stores and landscape the area as part of the refurbishment.
Paul Pearce, director of Mason & Partners, said: “One would like to think the planning application will be granted.
“That will allow us to start work in the new year to transform the site including new signage and a lot more landscaping.”
Mr Pearce said, if accepted, the planning application would also allow for extensions to the current units but said there are no immediate plans of that sort.
The owners of UK Superbowl declined to comment when approached by the Mail.