ONE of Helensburgh’s most prominent town centre buildings is set to be converted into an off-licence.

The former post office building, on the south-west corner of Colquhoun Square, is to become the new home of local business Ellie’s Cellar, currently located in East Princes Street.

A licence to sell alcohol for consumption off the premises was granted to the owners of Ellie’s Cellar by Argyll and Bute’s licensing board last week.

The post office building has lain empty in Colquhoun Square since it was vacated by the Royal Mail in 2014.

Addressing the licensing board’s meeting in Lochgilphead, company director Gordon Polley stated that this was the business’s first opportunity to move from its current location.

He said: “We have been in the Burgh for about five years. We want to stay in the town, but we need premises with smaller rent than where we are at the moment.”

Licensing standards officer Raymond Park said: “It is a move from one premises to another. The licence will go back to the owner of the building.

“Tasting events have been talked about at the premises with samples of alcohol being given out.”

When asked to clarify his plans for such events, Mr Polley said: “I have properties in a number of board areas and every board seems to be a bit different.

“My understanding is that in some areas, provided you are hosting a wine evening or something similar, with somebody talking about his wines before giving out small measures of 10 or 30 millilitres, that does not have to be licensed.

“But it varies from board to board.”

Mr Park responded that if such an event was subject to a charge, an on-sales licence would be required by the store.

An off-sales licence from noon until 10pm was granted.