ROOF work on Bobby’s in Bournemouth town centre will finally be completed this month. 

For the past two-and-a-half years, constant renovations and building work has been taking place on the historic building in the Square. 

But now, the building is waterproof for the first time in more than 50 years thanks to the £5.6million investment. 

Lewis Rogers, site manager at Bobby’s from Spetisbury Construction, said making the building watertight has been one of the firm’s “biggest challenges”. 

More than 50 buckets were placed on the fourth floor to catch any leaks – not helped by the storms of late, Lewis added. 

Bournemouth Echo: Bobby's is set to open in Bournemouth town centre on Thursday, September 9. (Bobbys, Commercial Road)

Bournemouth Echo:

Building work has been split into several phases to ensure the building remained open. 

Andy Birt, director at Bobby’s, said: “With its prominent position in town, we knew from day one that it was vital the lights remain on whilst the renovation works were carried out.  

“Bournemouth’s not had an easy few years but we’re not giving up on it. We are all incredibly passionate and determined about the future of the town and are all certain that we will see a bigger and better Bournemouth evolve and develop over the coming season and the following years.” 

Bobby’s will soon welcome a new restaurant called The Botanist on its fourth floor, previously home to the original tearoom with views of the Lower Gardens through metal-framed Crittall doors and windows. 

Lewis added: “Wherever possible, we’ve been restoring and reviving the building’s original features and this proved quite the challenge with the fourth floor.  

“They don’t manufacture these windows or doors any longer, these were the original Crittall windows from around 1915 and are so rare that there’s only three organisations in the whole of the UK that can restore them. 

“Every part of this project has been worked on by specialists and I for one am very appreciative of the dedication from the developers, Verve Properties, to restore the town’s history.” 

Bournemouth Echo: Andy BirtAndy Birt (Image: Bobby's)

Darren Frias-Robles, managing director at Whitefox Chartered Surveyors, added: “The design team have worked tirelessly to discover original installations and it’s been a real journey of exploration trying to uncover how it all would have looked over 100 years ago.” 

The restoration of the original brass work is set to continue around the entire building over the coming months revealing more of the building’s original façade.  

Transformative work will also be carried out on the right side of the frontage, where Bobby’s expanded into the neighbouring building in the 60s, to completely rejuvenate and create a new feature fascia. 

The restoration of the original brass work is set to continue around the entire building over the coming months revealing the building’s original façade. 

Bournemouth Echo: Bobby's Bournemouth

Meanwhile, the front of the building is also set for further renovations in the section home to Franca Manca which is being tiled and having its permanent signage installed. 

Andy added: “The Bobby’s listed heritage façade is the very backdrop to Bournemouth, we’re not just in Bournemouth, we’re a part of it, which is why we’re committing so much time to making sure it’s restored to its former glory. 

“Heading into phase three is very exciting for all of us, we’re now looking ahead to a fully-open and completed building by September this year. 

“The Bobby’s building will, once again, be at the heart of Bournemouth and we hope that our continued investment and commitment to the town will encourage others to do the same.”