TYCOON SIR John Hall has appointed architects to put together a restoration plan for his derelict Tyneside mansion.
The former Newcastle United owner has confirmed a finalised proposal will be submitted to Newcastle City Council this year, with the hope of securing planning permission in the winter.
Sir John, 78, says that if the project sticks to its current timetable construction, restoration work could begin soon after Christmas.
The Metrocentre founder has revealed he intends to create a unique seafood restaurant on the Woolsington Estate, with the help of his newly-appointed chief executive Paul Mackings, former chief executive of Newcastle Falcons’ rugby team.
Paul is the chief executive of Vimac Leisure, the company behind the award-winning Crab and Lobster restaurant, near Thirsk, North Yorkshire, whose success Sir John is keen to emulate.
Along with family members, Sir John, who has already overseen the restoration and transformation of Wynyard Hall on Teesside, into a flourishing hotel and wedding venue, and plans to restore all of the gardens at Woolsington.
He said: “We are aware this is an enormous project, but one we are very excited about. We have already spent a lot of money securing the property and it will be wonderful to breathe new life into it.
“Part of our overall plan is to restore the extensive gardens and grounds, so guests can enjoy walks through the woodlands. We want families to be able to come and stay, or enjoy, a meal or afternoon tea and have access to the fantastic views and setting.
“Woolsington is so close to the city it can offer families across the whole of Tyneside so much, if we get the development right. That’s why we are busy preparing a document to take to the council.”