Work is now underway to transform a historic seafront landmark into a thriving seafood restaurant.
Safety fencing has gone up around the bandstand and public convenience on Sea Road in South Shields - known locally as Ghandi’s Temple.
It is after planning permission was granted to Richard Ord to turn the structure into a new restaurant.
The venue will also include a cocktail bar and takeaway.
It is anticipated Mr Ord’s new business venture will open its doors to customers in Spring next year.
Mr Ord, who owns Colmans in Ocean Road said: “It’s wonderful to see work starting on the project and we are all really looking forward to seeing the temple fully restored with the addition of the restaurant.
“I’ll be visiting the site on a regular basis to see how things are going as you can never tell once building work starts.
“But we think it will be a fantastic addition to the seafront that we hope will make everybody proud.
“We have had some really positive feedback from the public and from our customers in general.
“We are just delighted after all this time and preparation work is finally getting underway.”
The new restaurant, expected to cost in the region of £1m to create, will be called Colmans Seafood Temple and Mr Ord – whose existing business in Ocean Road, South Shields, has won countless awards including Best Restaurant in the National Fish and Chip Awards – believes this may be the first time a bandstand has been used in such a way.
Mr Ord added: “The new restaurant will enhance the existing restaurant in Ocean Road and is quite a unique project not just in the North East but possible in the UK due to its position.”
It is thought the new business will help create around 35 jobs and apprentices. Local produce will also be used.
Mr Ord and his wife Frances expanded their current base in 2011 after listening to customer feedback.