Award-winning Belfast bar set for expansion

The Morning Star on Pottingers Entry, which dates back to 1810, has submitted plans for a major extension
Gareth McKeown

ONE of Belfast's oldest pubs has submitted plans for a major extension, which includes a new tapas bar.

The Morning Star on Pottingers Entry, which dates back to 1810, is set to undergo a facelift with proposals put forward for works on both the ground and first floor.

The planning application, submitted earlier this year is for an extension to both floors, internal alterations and a new tapas bar on the ground floor of the listed building in place of an existing store. The expansion plans would add an additional 154 sq m to the current 554sq m premises, bringing it up to 708 sq m and if approved, the bar has estimated that an additional six jobs would be created.

The award-winning pub was first built as a coaching stop for the Belfast to Dublin post. The Morning Star name is said to come from the nickname the boys who worked at the old mail coach depot called the building as it was their first point of call of the day and all that guided them were gas lamps, the moon and stars.

The proposed development at The Morning Star comes as another landmark Belfast pub is also undergoing a refurbishment. Work is currently underway at McCracken's Bar on Joys Entry with the £1m refurbishment spearheaded by Belfast entrepreneurs and publicans Mark Beirne and Jim Conlon, set to create 40 jobs once complete. Mr Beirne is also behind the transformation of the former site of Morrison's Bar on Bedford Street. Due to open in August new bar brand Pug Uglys is set to create 40 jobs and is one of five possible outlets set to open on the island of Ireland, with other sites being sought in Derry, Dublin, Galway and Cork.

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