New Soho restaurant to open in former illegal strip club

29 August 2014 by
New Soho restaurant to open in former illegal strip club

First-time restaurateur Gordon Ker is set to open a new venture in what was an illegal strip club on Soho's Great Windmill Street.

The news comes after Ker won permission for a change of use of the site earlier this week in order to convert it into a restaurant.

The ground floor of the building at 24-25 Great Windmill Street will be used as a shop for a fashion label, while the basement will become a 50-cover eaterie.

Former City worker Ker, who has experience advising on restaurants and hotels on investments, is taking informal advice from Hawksmoor co-founders Will Beckett and Huw Gott, although neither Beckett nor Gott are officially involved as has previously been reported.

Ker said he hoped that the venture, which is as yet unnamed while the concept is refined, would open before Christmas following a refurbishment.

A statement for the landlord of the site said: "On behalf of Soho Housing Association, Soho Ltd has achieved planning consent to convert a vacant commercial space at 24-25 Gt Windmill St, W1 for use as a basement restaurant of 2,000 sq ft approx. and a ground floor retail unit of 770 sq ft. The space has remained vacant for many years and formerly used as a hostess bar.

"The restaurant space will house a new British meat concept setup by Gordon Ker with help from friends in the industry. The retail unit is to be taken by Folk the established mens and womenswear clothing brand.

"The development will assist with the regeneration of this part of Soho that for many years has suffered from vacant properties and poor quality uses."

24-25 Great Windmill Street, used to be home to the Soho Cabaret, where police officers were reported to have recorded "at least 20 incidents of alleged extortion and blackmail involving the club" in two months, according to the Guardian.

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