The waves of change are rippling through Roker and Seaburn as new cafes, bars and restaurants boost its offering for Wearsiders, whilst also helping to stamp it on the map for visitors.
New additions such as Stack, Seaburn Inn, Tin of Sardines and North are already proving popular – and there’s more to come. Here’s some of the developments we can look forward to on the Roker Riviera.
1. Beachfront bar, Marine Walk
The team at Vaux Brewery, which includes investor George Clarke, the Washington architect who rose to fame on design shows, are set to transform the shelter in Marine Walk, Roker, this year. Rather than a sister bar to the taproom in Roker Retail Park, the beachfront bar will have its own identity selling brews from around the world, as well as food for sit-in and takeaway. Indoors, it will seat around 100 people, with seating also available at the front to make the most of the views.
2. Beach Huts, Seaburn
As part of the regeneration of the seafront, 12 beach huts are planned just north of House of Zen, which are sure to become a popular photo spot.
3. Tram shelter, Seaburn
Work is due to begin shortly on transforming the old Victorian tram shelter in Seaburn. The team at Blacks Corner, East Boldon, are hoping to open their new venture for sit in or take away brunches and small plates by autumn 2023. Much like their Boldon site, they will be honouring the heritage of the building whilst also giving it new life.
4. These Things Happen, Roker
City businessman Walter Veti has announced he will be turning the old Harbour View Motors, at the bottom of Horatio Street, into a bar and grill called These Things Happen. Designs are being finalised, with building works to be begin soon. It’s expected to open by summer 2023.
5. Stack Seaburn, phase 2
Stack Seaburn is set to double its size when work begins on phase 2 at the rear of the site in 2023. Phase 2 of the plans will get under way after statistics showed 100,000 people are visiting every month. Exciting expansion plans include mini golf, darts, shuffleboard, bowling and karaoke booths, along with a large function space on the first floor.
6. Plans for new cafe and amphitheatre, Roker Park
Plans to develop a new amphitheatre and café at Roker Park have been given the green light by city councillors. Back in 2022, Sunderland City Council submitted an application to its own planning department for new facilities at the Grade II-listed historic park and garden. This included earthworks to create a new amphitheatre and viewing platform near the existing bandstand, as well as a single-storey building for a café. The scheme forms part of the planned restoration of the popular Victorian park following feedback from a Let’s Talk Sunderland resident consultation.
7. Plans for Bella’s, Roker
Plans to bulldoze a former seafront amusements to make way for a family entertainment centre, café and apartments have been submitted to council development chiefs. Sunderland City Council’s planning department has validated an application for the Bella’s building at Marine Walk in Roker. The building has been vacant for a number of years but under new plans, it could be demolished to make way for a modern two-storey development. This would offer a family entertainment centre and ancillary café at ground floor level and accommodation above, with three apartments proposed, as well as an area for four car parking spaces at the southern end of the site.