HEREFORD’S Green Dragon Hotel owners hope refurbishing the venue will spark a revival of Broad Street and help turn the city into a food and drink destination.

The hotel’s bosses have presented their plans which include a £2.5million investment in the 19th century building.

Speaking at Hereford City Council this week, managing director Julian Vaughan said he expects the revamp to be completed by August this year.

“It’s a beautiful building that has been the place of a hostelry and hospitality for hundreds of years,” he said.

“We want to make it look inviting from the outside.

“The lack of investment in the building over the years is very clear from the outside and it is a detriment to Broad Street.”

Mr Vaughan said they will redecorate the façade and give it an off-stone colour and have green windows and doors.

“What we present to the outside world will be very similar to what it looked like 1910 when the façade was fresh.”

He said about a third of the 60,000 sq ft hotel will be dedicated to hospitality space for their guests.

“The rest is made up of services for our staff to operate the building,” he said.

Mr Vaughan told the meeting the new owners had been working on getting the hotel ready for refurbishment since they took it over on August 20, last year.

He explained the revamp will include the brasserie restaurant, current bar, lobby, lounge and the Offa Bar.

“The Offa Bar was a very celebrated drinking hole one day and we are looking forward to bringing that back.

“We also have the ballroom at the back of the building which will be refurbished as well.”

He said the city was lacking in a centrally based events space, so they are looking to get the ballroom ready by around June.

“The Offa Bar will be a more premium, cocktail bar with a lower number of covers and the rest of the hotel will be sensibly priced.”

Mr Vaughan said they also hope to create a venue to celebrate Herefordshire’s produce and make the hotel a platform for local food and drink.

Councillor Jim Kenyon said it would be great to see the Green Dragon ‘roaring’ again

“I was at Burns Night there quite recently and it was very good. It went down a storm,” he said.

“I’m very much looking forward to this, it will be great to see it roar again.”

Councillor Phil Edwards said the whole county is looking forward to seeing the hotel back to its former glory.

“When I was a lad, the Green Dragon was something to look up to for everyone,” he said.