Bar named after Jill Dando

PUBLISHED: 14:00 03 December 2010

Blakehay, Wadham Street, Weston,  New Cafe/Bar,  in picture are Malcolm Nicholson( weston town council clerk), Glen Richardson and Garry Warren

Blakehay, Wadham Street, Weston, New Cafe/Bar, in picture are Malcolm Nicholson( weston town council clerk), Glen Richardson and Garry Warren


THE final touches are being made to a room in the Blakehay theatre which town councillors hope to rename after Weston’s ‘favourite daughter’.

Weston Town Council has sought permission from Jill Dando’s family to name the newly-refurbished café bar in the Wadham Street building after the popular TV presenter.

Malcolm Nicholson, town clerk, said: “Councillors want to name the café bar in memory of Jill Dando.

“We have sought and obtained the family’s consent, and would like to show our respect to the town’s much loved TV presenter.”

This will be the second project in Weston to honour Jill Dando following her untimely death in 1999.

Jill’s Garden, situated in Grove Park, was created in 2001 by the BBC Ground Force team as a lasting tribute to the journalist, who began her career at the Mercury.

Mr Nicholson added: “Jill’s memory is very precious.

“She is someone of whom the people of Weston are rightly proud and the town council wanted to recognise her in this way.”

The café bar has been revamped as part of the facility’s phase one refurbishment, which has cost £180,000.

It has been redecorated and now features a new suspended ceiling, bar, glass screen between it and the foyer, new furniture including 10 tables and more than 40 chairs plus carpeting and improved lighting.

The phase one scheme, which began in July, also included improvements to the foyer, box office and toilets.

The town council has also agreed to spend another £28,000 for the second and final phase of the refurbishment.

It is aiming to make a raft of improvements, including better signage on the theatre’s façade and creating an entrance so people can directly access the cafe from Wadham Street.

Mr Nicholson added: “It is hoped to hold an official opening event for the refurbished Blakehay including the new café bar in late January.”

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