Ambitious plans for State Club

The Sands Venue for Weekend.  Pictured is Peter Swann, owner of the Sands.
The Sands Venue for Weekend. Pictured is Peter Swann, owner of the Sands.

EVENINGS out in Gainsborough look set to get a whole lot more exciting after local entrepreneur Peter Swann announced plans to re-open a much-loved night spot.

The State Club on Church Street was once a landmark of town centre nightlife before closing its doors in 2010.

The State Club, Gainsborough G120228-6

The State Club, Gainsborough G120228-6

It once housed a cinema and then a nightclub before hard times hit the industry during the recession.

But hope is on the horizon as the club owner revealed his ambition to bring the venue back to life.

“We want to bring the Sands experience back to Gainsborough - fine dining, variety performances, a really classy evening venue,” said Mr Swann.

The Sands Venue, on Lord Street, was Mr Swann’s other town centre entertainment venture which closed almost a year ago.

The plush dining and music experience moved to the larger State Club premises for a time, but Mr Swann eventually decided to concentrate his efforts on his other Sands Venue in Blackpool.

“It has really taken off the ground in Blackpool and we have learned a lot,” he said.

“We want to bring that back to Gainsborough so people can enjoy the same Sands high quality food and music.”

“It’s about re-igniting Gainsborough. There’s a lot going on here and we’re looking forward to the future.”

Mr Swann, who is also chairman of Gainsborough Trinity Football Club, said the State venue would have a ‘complete overhaul’ before hopefully re-opening next May.

“You won’t recognise it,” he said.

“We want to do this properly. Downstairs we want to put the Sands experience back in. But also utilise the other rooms to hold music and events.”

This is not the first time Mr Swann has announced his intention to transform the State building into an entertainment venue and restaurant.

When the Sands moved in last year, the ambition was to have the venue open again by this month.

“I think with plans due to be submitted for the new Trinity ground this is a good time to think about getting the State going again,” he said.

“We’re looking forward to both projects and they could complement each other.”

And the Blues chairman said he still had hopes that someone would take on the lease for the empty Sands Venue.

“Ideally I would like to see someone come in and do something with it,” he said.

“It’s a fantastic venue, but it wasn’t big enough for us to make it pay.”

The Sands Venue in Blackpool seats 250 people and serves three course meals and a packed entertainment programme.

Top jazz, soul and rock and roll acts feature regularly on the bill. And it is hoped they will roll back into Gainsborough.

Meanwhile, Friday is the deadline for plans to go in for Mr Swann’s other venture, a 4,500 capacity stadium on the former Castle Hills site.

As well as being a new home for Trinity, who have been based at the Northolme since 1873, the stadium would feature a floodlit 3G training facility and several function areas to bring in revenue.

“If we get approval, it will spell an exciting period of change for the team and the town,” said Mr Swann.