Public to have their say on future of former pub and Indian restaurant

The former Viking Pub on Tills Road. Photo: Liz Reynolds

The former Viking Pub in Tills Road, Sprowston - Credit: Eastern Counties Newspapers

Architects have drawn up their first plans of how a former boozer could be transformed into a thriving community space. 

Sprowston Town Council has purchased the former Viking Pub and Royal Bengal Indian restaurant in Tills Road and is in the process of working out how it can be best used. 

A group of councillors recently discussed the initial plans for the redevelopment of what will be the Viking Centre with Jason Menezes, head of building consultancy at Bidwells. 

Town council minutes state this initial meeting "generated many questions and a further meeting was to take place with Mr Menezes". 

Members of Sprowston Town Council outside the newly purchased former Viking pub on Tills Road in Sprowston 

Members of Sprowston Town Council outside the newly purchased former Viking Pub in Tills Road in Sprowston - Credit: Submitted

Sprowston town clerk Guy Ranaweera said: "The generation of questions is quite normal for the early stages of this kind of project. 

"It is far better to ask questions before any money is spent than after!" 

Draft plans for the Viking Centre will be presented for consideration at a public full council meeting on October 6. 

Mr Ranaweera said that providing no major revisions are required, the plans will then be consulted on publicly shortly thereafter.

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Town councillor Bill Couzens, who is not part of the Viking Centre working group, said "one or two people" believe the discussions should have been public rather than in private for the working group alone. 

Mr Couzens added: "As far as I can tell the purchase has gone ahead and the council is looking at ways to utilise it and get it into public use as soon as possible." 

A recent town council recreational facilities survey showed the main priority for people living in Sprowston is a nature wildlife area, followed by a swimming pool. 

This feedback will form part of the council's discussions for the Viking Centre which has been taken on to better serve the west side of the community. 

Mr Couzens said: "Our other venue the Diamond Centre is getting very full and there is more demand for it than we can fulfil. We need an additional space for people to meet." 

The Viking Pub closed in 2007, before being turned into the Royal Bengal Indian restaurant from 2010 until mid-2019.

Bidwells has been contacted for comment. 

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