Exclusive: Food hall, restaurant and venue plans as local hospitality group takeover BAaD at Barrowland market

New hospitality and event plans revealed for Barras Art and Design.
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Merchant Pubs & Bars Group which owns city centre hospitality venues including Blackfriars pub on Bell Street, Nonna Said pizza restaurant and Blue Dog cocktail bar has concluded a deal to takeover BAaD, the event venue and container yard at the Calton Entry section of The Barras.  

The new operators will start to roll out their plan for the venue, opening five days a week by the end of April. The courtyard will be a food hall with menus from new food brand Shawarma Boy, a seafood concept called Snapper Brother Fish Company - "oysters, fish finger sandwiches, weekend specials from the fish market" - alongside Italian influenced dishes and pizza from Nonna Said. Director of Food, chef John Molloy will lead the kitchen at BAaD.

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The venue will continue to have an active roster of music events while adding comedy club nights. BAaD will be a fan hub for Euros 2024 from June 14 to July 14. The new operator will appoint a dedicated wedding venue team to further develop that side of the business, working alongside the new management team. The yard area will continue to host food and drink market events.

Norrie Innes of ROCK DCM, who created BAaD with it's distinctive arched glass roof 25 years ago, building up the courtyard with a collection of spaces to enjoy food, drink and entertainment, said: "Regeneration has, in its various forms, sat at the core of ROCK DCM's objectives over three decades now and we always, in every project or venue,  look to create the best possible conditions for talent to positively express itself and, having gone through a uniquely challenging covid experience and recovery, BAaD is now ready for what is a more than exciting next stage in its creative evolution.  

"We are absolutely delighted to acknowledge the very special qualities and talent in Merchant Pubs & Bars Group that will take BAaD to the next level. It has been an absolute pleasure getting to know Andy and his wonderful Team!  The “fit” for us is as close to perfect as we could ever expect, and we look forward to working with the Merchant Pubs & Bars team on future projects – we are sure of this. We share the same values when it comes to honest, hard graft and most importantly a passion and desire for serving up the good stuff."

Owner and Managing Director of Merchant Pubs & Bars Group, Andy McCartney told GlasgowWorld: “We are absolutely delighted to conclude a deal, for what I deem to be the best multi-purpose events space in Glasgow.  Norrie and his team have truly built something that is iconic and we are going to take it to the next level. 

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"We are very humbled and privileged to be custodians of such a venue, that means so much to the people of Glasgow.  Amongst other things, we have exciting plans to scale up the comedy shows, which are already a massive hit at Blackfriars, as well as creating a food market. Keep your eyes peeled for something called ‘Shawarma Boy’ coming soon! We cannot wait to get started.”

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