House! South Shields' former Mecca bingo hall could be turned into apartments

Owners of a landmark building in South Tyneside could soon be shouting '˜house' after putting in plans to transform it into apartments.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 29th February 2016, 5:00 am
The Mecca closed its doors in September 2014.
The Mecca closed its doors in September 2014.

An application has been made to South Tyneside Council for The Mecca bingo hall, in Dean Road, South Shields, to be turned into 56 apartments.

The plan is also to turn the ground floor into a gym, beauty salon, coffee shop and two other retail units.

The plans have been submitted by agents WardmanBrown on behalf of the applicant Dennis Harley Developments Ltd.

The Mecca closed its doors in September 2014.

A spokesman for the firm said: “The mix of accommodation would be 29 one-bed, 25 two-bed, and two three-bed self contained apartments.

“The ground floor uses applied for will accommodate a gym, a hairdressers, a coffee shop and two further retail units.”

The planning application states that the development could “uplift” the area.

It reads: “The proposed amendments will have no significant adverse impact on the amenities of neighbouring properties or local residents.

“The renovation of this dilapidated property could, in fact, uplift the area.”

The building was first opened on October 21 1935 as the Regent Cinema – at the time, The Scarlet Pimpernel starring Leslie Howard was showing.

In May 24, 1943, a German 500kg bomb fell on Dean Road, causing damage to the cinema and houses nearby.

After being repaired, the cinema ran until 1966 when it was then transformed into the Mecca Bingo.

The application added: “The building has been a prominent focal point in the local community since it was built in 1935, and with it being vacant since September 2014, the proposal will put the building back in to good use for the local community.

“This building in its current state is in urgent need of regeneration which would benefit the area as a whole and this proposal should be encourage.”

Comments can be made on the proposals until March 14.

To add your comments you should visit the website www.southtyneside.gov.uk/ and search for application ‘ST/0047/16/FUL’