A new drive is underway to identify a suitable occupier for a historic city centre church following the opening of a major new food and entertainment complex close by.

The Grade II Listed St. John the Evangelist Church in Hanley has stood empty since the late 1980s before being carefully restored a few years ago.

Now marketing agents Mounsey Surveyors believes the time is right for a renaissance of the church which dates back to around 1787.

“The development of the Hive at the Intu Potteries Centre has added significantly to the footfall in the area and will be a significant driver for more development on the northern side of the city centre,” said Tom Johnson, Chartered Surveyor at Mounsey Surveyors.

“Whilst we are receiving ongoing interest in the re-use of St. John’s Church, we are undertaking a thorough marketing campaign to identify a suitable occupier on either a freehold or leasehold basis. Based on our discussions with local planning officers, they are keen to support a full range of uses given the building’s prominent city centre location.”

Owners, Church Converts LLP, have carried-out extensive work to ensure St. John’s remains weatherproof and in sound internal condition. The building comprises 8,410 sq ft of internal space that is located on a secure site area benefitting from dedicated car parking.

St John’s was among the first building constructed using cast iron and is therefore of architectural significance.

Tom comments, “A Restaurant and café use has always been the most likely alternative use for the building but I believe it would prove equally suitable for a range of other planning uses including leisure, business, retail and residential.”

Since purchasing the building amongst a portfolio of assets from the Church of England, Church Converts LLP has invested substantially in the building to repair it, bring out the best of the historic features, and present it as a beautiful space for future tenants to exploit.