A new microbrewery and cafe is to open at vacant office space in Leeds after the plans were approved.
AQL Ltd is to create The Bowman bar, named after Bowman Lane, at 11 to 15 Hunslet Road in what is being regenerated as the South Bank area of the city.
Meeting rooms will also be made at the site – due to open some time next year – as the telecommunications company’s chief executive Professor Adam Beaumont hopes to create a place where people can work while having a coffee.
He said: “I think it’s important as the area develops that we do things to support the community and have social hubs.
“People will be able to have a drink of coffee while accessing the fastest wifi in the city.”
The cafe/bar is to be created on the ground and first floor with an office on the second floor, and flat on the third floor.
And the application itself says that four full-time employees would be taken on.
Leeds Civic Trust has backed the plans, supporting the “minimal and sympathetic” changes to the building’s front, according to a council report.
The document also says that the plan has “potential to safeguard the long term use of the building, provide a service for local residents, workers and visitors, and contribute positively to the variety and vitality of the area, and the local economy generally”.
The site lies within the City Centre Conservation Area, near to pubs such as The Adelphi and Red Lion. It is also close to the former Tetley brewery site, an area for which there are separate plans for a “vibrant neighbourhood” of up to 850 homes, office and commercial space as well as hotels.
Dr Beaumont, 45, said that he set up Leeds’s first no-smoking cafe – which later became Further North in Chapel Allerton – so has experience in the bar trade. He began his career with a PhD in Physical Chemistry and a three year stint as Leeds University’s youngest lecturer.