Well-known Middlesbrough night spot Club Bongo International is set to reopen under new management following a £400,000 refurbishment.
One of Teesside’s oldest nightclubs, Club Bongo had its drinks licence revoked indefinitely after a man was attacked there in June this year.
But the club, on Bridge Street West, close to Middlesbrough Railway Station, is set to reopen after being granted an alcohol licence – with a new management team planning a major refit.
A statement issued by Mincoffs Solicitors said: “With the licence now saved, the new owner has brought in an experienced manager and premises licence holder, Joy Clayton.
“The club will enjoy a new lease of life with a £400,000 investment, refurbishment and change of layout.”
Club Bongo International was opened by Abdillahi Warsama in 1963, quickly establishing itself as one of the most famous bars in the area, popular with many visitors to the area.
Mincoffs revealed that plans to sell the club to new owner Terry Barker – a long-time friend of Warsama – were in place as far back as 2015.
A condition of the sale was that the club kept the name and its style of music.
When Warsama died, plans were put on hold whilst his estate was administered. Further delays occurred when the licence was revoked in 2017.
The alcohol licence was reissued after an appeal was successfully led by Mincoffs Solicitors. Cleveland Police, Public Health and licensing authorities all consented to the appeal, provided robust conditions were put into place.
Following the decision, new licensee Joy Clayton said: “Club Bongo International is known in this area for reggae music with a great vibe.
“This is something I’m keen to keep at the heart of the club, so the name and heritage will remain the same.
“The aim is to open around Spring 2018 and I’m excited for what is ahead for Club Bongo International.
“I’d like to thank the police, public health and licensing authorities for working in partnership with us to resurrect the licence for this historic venue.”
The appeal was supported by a number of parties, including Cllr Terry Lawton, Steve Howe and Tim Robson from Phoenix Security as well as a number of local residents, including one who submitted a 60-page petition.