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Commercial plans for Clayhouse Inn site approved

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New life: an artist’s rendering of the proposed new commercial building at the former site of the Clayhouse Inn, North Shore Road, Devonshire (Image from clayhouse.bm)

Plans to breathe new life into the former site of the iconic Clayhouse Inn with a commercial and retail building have been approved by the Development Applications Board.

The planning application proposed the creation of an establishment at the North Shore, Devonshire, site.

The development would come with a basement, retail space on the ground floor and doctors’ offices on the first floor.

The proposal was recommended for approval by technical officers, who wrote in a report: “This new development will provide convenience to the residents and visitors and help to promote the local economy.”

The Clayhouse Inn, located at 77 North Shore Road, Devonshire, became a top venue after the late Choy Aming Sr, a Trinidadian, leased it in 1967.

International artists from Ziggy Marley to Roberta Flack performed at the club, as well as carnival dancers, the Not the Um Um Show and a range of novelty acts.

The venue shut its doors after a January 2002 fire, and the building fell into disrepair as it sat vacant until 2020, when the dilapidated structure was torn down.

Landmark venue: The Clayhouse Inn prior to its 2020 demolition (File photograph)

Previous plans for a larger development on the site were approved in 2008.

However work never began on the project after neighbours spoke out against the proposal.

The new plans, submitted last year, said the building would occupy the same location as the former Clayhouse Inn but have a smaller overall footprint.

A website for the developer, Clayhouse Renaissance, said it had been a dream of the property’s owner to further the project since its heyday as a nightclub and residences.

“The proposed development will continue its commercial use with the establishment of a pharmacy and doctors’ offices,” the website states.

“The family see the development as a win for the surrounding and distant neighbourhoods due to the intended use and location along a well-travelled road. The nearest facility that is similar is approximately two to three miles away.”

A report prepared for the Development Applications Board said the project would revitalise a brownfield site with a mixed-use development combining a pharmacy, retail store, and takeout restaurant on the ground floor.

The second floor would feature doctors' offices, while the project would include a sidewalk and parking spaces for up to 31 cars and 26 cycles.

The report noted that the proposed building encroaches into the 25ft setback, with the structure starting 8ft 5in from North Shore Road.

However, the DAB has discretion for projects that rehabilitate, upgrade or improve brownfield sites.

According to the minutes of the DAB’s May 8 meeting, a technical officer said that with the sidewalk improvement, forcing the 25ft setback would not result in any benefits to the area where many buildings are located within the setback.

New life: an artist’s rendering of the proposed new commercial building at the former site of the Clayhouse Inn, North Shore Road, Devonshire (Image from planning documents)

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Published May 14, 2024 at 7:40 am (Updated May 14, 2024 at 7:22 am)

Commercial plans for Clayhouse Inn site approved

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