A BRAND new bar, where punters can enjoy "relentless good times", has thanked the public for a "glorious welcome" over the weekend.

Imperil Cleckheaton launched on Saturday, October 10, with more than 100 people turning up across the day to take in the town's latest offering, in a social distanced way.

The former Peppermint Pig shop building, in Albion Street, has been completely transformed in a matter of months, with just over £60,000 pumped into the project.

Managing Director, Nicola Warren, outlined how her and her husband first received keys to the premises in August and always intended to open when they did.

This is the second Imperil venue, following the lead of the business's Mirfield location.

That saw "rapid success" and meant Imperil wanted "somewhere bigger to accommodate more booking requests", according to Mrs Warren.

They now employ 18 people in total across both venues, with 10 staff members working at Imperil Cleckheaton.

Mrs Warren said: "The launch day was fully booked within a couple of hours of announcing it and it was fabulous.

"The last two weeks were a crazy rush with my husband, Damien, working 18 hour days to get things finished in time.

"So to be ready and open for those first guests was such a relief - definitely 90 per cent hard work and 10 per cent miracle.

"I love seeing a plan come to fruition, it’s easily the best part for me.

"Seeing other people enjoying it, knowing we’ve created that, makes all the stress worthwhile."

Imperil is about style and class, and is a "grown-up place" with a strict over-21 rule in place.

But, it backs aesthetics up with substance, offering a variety of mouth-watering grazing platters and freshly shaken cocktails.

Mrs Warren explains, to get a true feel for the bar's atmosphere, you have to come and experience it yourself.

She said: "All I know is I wanted to create a venue where I would love to go.

"From the music to the lighting, to the stylish surroundings and there you have it, Imperil.

"It’s strictly over-21s, a grown-up place, with really high standards in terms of attitude and behaviour.

"We employ some really great staff who we appreciate and treat well.

"We love to laugh and, most importantly for a cocktail bar, we make really good cocktails - all freshly shaken to order, using branded spirits, and we don’t let anything leave the bar that we wouldn’t drink ourselves.

"We don’t strive to be a restaurant, we’re most definitely a bar, but our tapas style grazing is the perfect accompaniment to some drinks.

"Hopefully, eventually, it’ll be a place with some great live music and a full dance floor."

The bar has opened at a time when much uncertainty surrounds the hospitality sector due to changing restrictions and a rise in cases of coronavirus.

But Imperil is remaining stoic and Mrs Warren admits the Cleckheaton location might never have been, if it weren't for the pandemic.

She said: "We have a motto in our house of, 'if not, why not', I don’t really see risk, I see opportunities and chances and take them wherever I can.

"It was great to have something to focus on during lockdown too.

"We own two wedding venues that have had business decimated this year, which actually meant we had a summer free for this project.

"If it hadn’t of been for the pandemic, we might not have ever had the time to do it."

There is a plan in place though, if the worst scenario became reality and Cleckheaton was placed in tier three of the new local lockdown system - meaning pubs and bars would have to close, unless they could operate as a restaurant (and only serve alcohol as part of "substantial" meals).

Mrs Warren said: "Of course it would be devastating but we're nothing if not resourceful and we’ll adapt.

"During the first lockdown we introduced our ‘Quarantini‘ from Imperil Mirfield - freshly shaken cocktails on your doorstep alongside our grazing platters.

"It was so popular in Mirfield and sold out most weekends for three months and we’d look to do the same again from both venues."

Despite the tumultuous times, Mrs Warren is not leaving ambition parked at the door when it comes to developing the business into the future.

As well as setting up her own business upstart consultancy firm, she also wants expand Imperil even further.

Mrs Warren said: "We’d really love to see Imperil pop up in another couple of towns at least, bringing that city centre vibe to a local area for people to enjoy.

"We receive weekly requests from people suggesting the next town we should come to."