Derelict bar’s grim future

The Shades bar in Church Street, Hartlepool, which has been closed for some time.
The Shades bar in Church Street, Hartlepool, which has been closed for some time.

THE owners of a derelict town nightspot fear a grim future for the bar due to the fact the building doesn’t have a late alcohol license.

Shades, in Church Street, in the town, closed two years ago and has remained empty and boarded up ever since.

The bar previously had a license to serve alcohol until 4am but that was changed to 2am in April 2011.

But the bar’s owners, Barry and Terrence Wilkinson, of Capanac Leisure, say the nightspot relied on a late license and fear the building may now stand empty for a prolonged period, similar to the former Odeon cinema building, in Raby Road, also owned by the brothers which has been derelict for 13 years.

Barry, who lives in the Park Road area of Hartlepool, said: “The problem is people don’t come down to this area of the town on a night out until 1am or 1.30am so obviously that was no good for us when our license was changed so we could only serve alcohol until 2am.

“I don’t think there’s any real use for the building other than as a nightclub or a late bar but it’s no use to anyone when you can only serve alcohol until 2am.

“If we had a license until 4am it could be opened again as a nightclub but at the minute it’s no good for anybody.

“It’s a waste because it’s in a great position in the town.”

A Hartlepool Borough Council spokesman said the 2am license remains on the building even though it’s closed and anybody who wished to reopen the bar would have to pay the owed annual license fees from when the bar closed.

Alternatively they could apply for a fresh license for the building.