A NEW basement restaurant could replace an old city centre tailors, if plans are approved.

Two Crafty Brewers, which also owns the Lamb and Flag in The Tything, want to open a new restaurant in a grade II-listed building which has lain empty for more than 18 months.

The building, on the corner of The Foregate and Sansome Street, was previously occupied by Individual Tailoring.

The ground floor will have a bar and space for around 50 covers to serve food and snacks – including room for 20 people outside in the Hopmarket courtyard.

A further 56 covers would be fitted in a sit-down basement restaurant.

Following objections from neighbours over noise, tables and chairs from the outdoor seating area would have to be removed by 6pm and not put out on Sundays and Bank Holidays.

Visitors to the restaurant would also not be able to smoke in the courtyard.

Mike Stephenson, West Mercia Police’s design crime out officer, said the restaurant would be in a high crime and anti-social behaviour area of the city centre but his concerns were eased by an 11pm closing time.

Mr Stephenson agreed the tables in the courtyard should be removed in the evening to lessen the disruption to neighbours.

Bill Simpson, chairman of the Hopmarket Charity, said: “The restaurant, as envisaged, is not for a fast food outlet, therefore there should not be any ‘incidents of anti-social behaviour or indiscriminate disposal of rubbish’ often associated with such takeaways.

“Also, the residents’ concern about late night noise should be placated by the fact that the restaurant is in the basement.”

Three objections were received to the plan from neighbours, all citing noise as the reason for their disapproval.

Neighbour John McDonald said: “ I strongly object to the prospect of having my evenings disturbed by noisy, drunken bar clientele in the Courtyard.

“The Hopmarket is a residential zone which currently enjoys peace and quiet in the evenings once the gates are locked.

“This new venture will drive a coach and horses through this.”

A decision will be made at a meeting of the city council’s planning committee on October 18.