Plan to transform Burnley bar into apartments and shops

Guys as Dolls in Burnley
Guys as Dolls in Burnley

A landmark Burnley town centre bar is set to undergo a radical transformation .

Property developer Ian Walker is turning Guys As Dolls, formerly the Garden Bar, into five affordable shops and three luxury apartments – almost 30 years since he DJ’ed at the opening night of the bar.

Part of the building will remain a licensed premises which the Burnley-born businessman, who owns Ian Walker Property Group, is hoping will become a restaurant.

“I have a lot of properties throughout the North-West, in Manchester and Warrington for instance,” said Mr Walker, who lives in Cliviger and went to Barden High School. “But I’m really excited about this project though as it’s in my home town. It’s strange having DJ’ed at the opening night of the bar probably around 26 years ago but it’s nice to be back here.

“There has been a shift towards this side of town in recent times, towards lower St James’s Street, and it’s definitely on the up.”

Mr Walker said there had already been a lot of interest in the development, which he expects to be completed before the summer.

“We have started working on it. It’s going to be a big job , there’s a lot of work to do. Hopefully it should be done within 16 weeks. With them being affordable retail units we’ve already had a quite a lot of interest.”