Sunderland bar Chase demolished in £1million revamp project

NEW LOOK: An artist's impression of how the new bar will look in Park Lane.
NEW LOOK: An artist's impression of how the new bar will look in Park Lane.
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PLANS to give a bar a makeover have undergone their own overhaul after work uncovered a catalogue of issues with the building.

John and Karen Dickman initially planned to invest £750,000 into their refurbishment of Chase in Park Lane, but have now upped that to £1million after being forced to redraft the designs.

When work began, they found more issues with the structure of the building than they had expected, which meant it had to be pulled down for safety reasons.

The shipyard and industrial theme of the finished business will remain, with three floors to be dedicated to entertainment.

The couple, who already run Gatsby opposite, bought Chase late last year, and hope the new venue will play a part in improving the choice of bars in the area as bar bosses create a ‘Golden Square’ of places for revellers to visit within close proximity.

Once it reopens in the beginning of November, it will employ around 60 staff.

Mr Dickman said: “Other companies have refurbished it that many times by doing bits and bobs, it was easier to demolish it, and we found the lintels were not supported.

“Now it’s going to be over three floors and it’s going to be awesome.” The Dickmans plan to serve food at the bar, along with a function room, VIP area and outdoor terraces.

The name of the new bar is still under wraps, but Mr Dickman hopes people with links and family ties to the Wear’s shipyards will help as he looks to fill the building with photos and items relating to the trade.

Anyone who would like to make contact with him can email him via