THE owners of a popular restaurant which has been closed since it was damaged in an arson attack in 2016 have put the site on the rental market.

The Ital restaurant in Bolton Road has been shut since arsonists set a fire in the conservatory in September 2016, causing some fire damage and smoke damage throughout the building.

Now, after opening a new restaurant elsewhere in the district last year, the family-owned building is being offered to let for around £32,000 a year.

The listing, advertised through letting agency Sharma Williamson, says it is envisaged their clients will refurbish the property and hand it over in a shell condition for the new tenant to fit out.

In July last year, co-owner Aldo Devittoris opened a new restaurant, Aldo’s Italian, in Harrogate Road, Greengates, and said at the time he and his brother Christian wanted a “fresh start”, and had plans to develop the Ital site.

He said: “I have downsized and that is going really well, and my brother has moved into catering so we decided to put the site up for rent.

“We have had a lot of interest in it already, it’s a great site, and as a family we decided this was the best move.”

Mr Devittoris has also recently submitted plans for a new gin bar two doors down from his restaurant in Greengates.

The proposed bar, which would be in a currently empty unit, would open in the afternoon and evening seven days a week, and employ one person full-time and two people part-time

He added: “I’m next door and Greengates is a nice area, we sell a lot of gin anyway so I thought a small bar would be perfect for the area.”

The property listing describes the Bolton Road premises as a single-storey, purpose-built restaurant property of stone and cement-rendered elevations under a pitched and hipped tiled roof.

“Various recent adaptations have included a conservatory, additional stores etc.

“The current accommodation is laid out to provide a dining conservatory, main dining area, beer store, catering kitchen, office, staff changing room and male/female toilets.”