A REAL ale bar could be set to open in Nelson Square after planning permission was submitted to Bolton Council.

Bolton-based Northern Monkey Brew Co. are hoping to move into the former premises of Italian restaurant La Piazza.

The microbrewery, which produces nearly 300 pints a week, was set up by business partners Ryan Bailey and Liam Convey in 2016, building it as an extension to the side of the former’s home in Astley Bridge.

Last year, they moved into The Link, the retail and leisure venue due to open at the disused Bow Street car park, but they are now in the midst of negotiations to lease the building in Nelson Square.

The proposed opening hours for the bar would be 12pm-12am from Sunday to Thursday and 12pm-1am on Fridays and Saturdays.

Mr Bailey, who works full-time as a firefighter, said that if the plans are given the go-ahead, he hoped it would move the business to the next level, as well as bringing something new to Bolton town centre.

“There is still a long way to go and a lot of things that need doing," he said.

"We have only submitted an application at the moment, but we are hopeful.

“We are Bolton lads so we have grown up here. The town centre seems to be getting a bit of money invested in it and the council seem keen to get people in there.

“I think there is a big push in towns like Bolton to get more of a continental al fresco feel rather than that buy one, get one free sort of culture.

“We want to bring something different to the town centre that will compliment the way the council wants to move Bolton forward."