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Ernest & Co Wine Bar, Shrewsbury

Formerly a climbing shop that served local mountaineering enthusiasts, Ernest & Co is PKA's latest addition to the Lion & Pheasant Hotel in the Shropshire town's historic centre.

The pair of Grade 2 listed premises, which occupy the street frontage of the hotel, became vacant on the shop proprietor's retirement, whereupon they reverted to E Chidlow & Co, the owners of the Lion & Pheasant and the family company of PKA director Rachael Chidlow.

Seizing the opportunity to expand the hotel's offering, Rachael undertook the design and construction of a new wine bar, as well as extending the hotel reception area to provide a second residents' lounge.

PKA's preliminary surveys found that underneath the fit-out there were remnants of the original shop's interior that included two fireplaces and cellars dating from at least the eighteenth century.

Keeping the Edwardian shopfronts and making an opening to the hotel garden behind, Rachael's interior conserves all that is best of the historic fabric, combining the old with the new in ways that create an interior which is richer than either on its own.

The architecture of the room is formed by a combination of original brickwork, plaster, steel and timber that are conserved and combined with new panelling, flooring, lighting, tables and chairs, as well as the signature zinc counter that was custom-made for the project.

The wine bar - named Ernest & Co. in memory of Rachael's father who undertook the first conversion of the Wyle Cop properties into a hotel - has quickly become one of Shrewsbury's most popular wining and dining destinations.

Client: E. Chidlow and Co.

Value: £300,000
Size: 80 sq.m.
Reference: N/A
Design: 2018
Completion: 2019