Restaurant operators eye Grade I-listed bank building

Developer reveals interest from restaurant operators in Grade I-listed former Bank of England building in Liverpool with a possible planning application this summer. Tony McDonough reports

Bank of England
Grade I-listed former Bank of England building in Castle Street, Liverpool. Picture by Tony McDonough


Developer JSM Group says it is “likely” to push forward with plans for a restaurant and private dining facility at the former Bank of England headquarters in Liverpool.

JSM’s property and assets manager, Matt Crebbin, told LBN there is interest from a number of restaurant operators in the Grade I-listed building, which has sat on the corner of Castle Street and Cook Street for 175 years.

In September 2022 the developer secured planning consent to create a new hotel in the Grade II-listed former NatWest Bank building across the road in Castle Street. This multi-million pound project will see a hotel with 92 rooms and a rooftop extension.

JSM, which owns a number of properties in the city, first announced its plans for the Bank of England site last year. Matt said: “The Bank Of England is likely to become a restaurant with private dining options. We have interested parties.

“However, we’re at a slight impasse at the moment with local planning. With the local elections there will be no new planning committee dates until around June or July.

“We are still looking to go ahead with the hotel scheme over the road at the former Natwest and we are currently in discussion with operators.”

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Once described as a “masterpiece of Victorian architecture” the Bank of England building in Castle Street was completed in 1848. It was designed by Charles Robert Cockerell and built in a neoclassical style.

Its features are influenced by a number of styles including Greek, Roman and Renaissance. It was Grade I-listed in 1952. The Bank of England left in 1987 and it was occupied by the TSB Bank for a few years in the 1990s.

In April 2015 it was occupied for almost two weeks by political activists, known as Love Activists, who turned it into an illegal homeless shelter. They were eventually evicted by the police. The building has remained empty ever since.

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