Popular former pub set to be brought back to life
Ted Peskett, local democracy reporter
A Grade II listed pub, which was a favourite haunt of rugby fans, is set to reopen years after it closed down.
The iconic Westgate pub on Cowbridge Road East closed in 2016, with former owners, Brains, citing declining customer numbers in its decision to sell up.
However, it now looks set to reopen as a bar again after Cardiff Council’s licensing sub committee approved an application for a premises licence at a meeting on Wednesday January 24.
The Grade II listed property that most long-term Cardiff residents know, even if only via the distinctive façade, was built in 1932 by Sir Percy Thomas who is credited with some of south Wales’ most recognisable buildings and structures, including The Temple of Peace in Cathays Park and Swansea’s Guildhall.
Popular with rugby fans before and after games at the Principality Stadium, Arms Park, the SSE Swalec and Cardiff City stadiums, the pub sits near Bute Park and Cardiff Castle.
After its closure it was bought and transformed into a home but in 2023 the property was taken over by Adrian Hibbert.
A Facebook post by the new owners on November 11 stated that they hope to open the premises in early 2024 and host a range of entertainment, including live music, bingo, quiz nights, karaoke and live sports.
The Shared Regulatory Service (SRS) raised concerns about the application in relation to potential disruption caused by noise due to the building’s proximity to a place of worship and residential streets.
An SRS officer at Wednesday’s meeting, Samantha Page, said: “There is just a lot of lack of detail of how he is going to manage the noise from customers and from [entertainment] on site.”
Ms Page also raised concerns about Mr Hibbert’s plans to open the rooftop terrace.
In his application, Mr Hibbert said it was his intention to open the terrace so that customers could “consume alcohol and relax in the good weather”.
However, Ms Page said SRS “didn’t think that it was structurally safe to have anyone on the roof”.
The application for a premises licence was granted subject to a number of conditions laid out by the pollution control team at SRS, including stopping the sale of alcohol at midnight from Thursday to Sunday and at 1am from Friday to Saturday.
A condition has also been added that will prevent the use of the terrace by customers for any activity other than smoking.
In letter attached to the application report, Mr Hibbert wrote in response to SRS’s concerns that any noise levels will be managed outside the building by door staff before they become unacceptable to neighbours.
He said the premises will also have signs on exits to remind customers to leave the premises quietly.
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