77 new jobs: Historic Derry buildings to be transformed into boutique hotels

Helen Quigley, Mark H Durkan, John Meehan, Mervyn Storey and Karl Pederson. Image copyright Lorcan Doherty
Image caption The Northern Counties on Bishop Street was built in 1899 and is a landmark in the city

A total of 77 news jobs will be created in Londonderry as two landmark buildings are turned into hotels.

The former Northern Counties Club on Bishop Street is being converted into a 31-bed hotel.

A former bank building on Shipquay Street will be turned into a 20-bed hotel.

Both projects have received funding from the Department for Social Development and Department of Environment.

Work on the building in Shipquay Street is due to be completed in March while its counterpart on Bishop Street is due to open for business later this summer.

It is expected that 65 jobs will be created at the Bishop Street site, which will also have a restaurant, a cookery school and two retail units, and the remaining 12 will be at the Shipquay Street site.

Social Development Minister Mervyn Storey said: "The projects are a major boost to the local economy, providing jobs for the local hospitality sector, as well as the construction jobs needed to undertake the work."

Environment Minister Mark H Durkan said the projects were important for investment and tourism.

"Derry's built heritage is a unique attraction for tourists and investors and a source of pride for locals. It is important that we strive together to realise its full potential."