A BLOCK of Victorian toilets in Newport is set to become a performing arts venue after planning permission was granted.

Permission has been granted to change the use of the listed building in Courtybella Terrace, Pill, by the city council.

The plans include removing the urinals and installing a mezzanine.

Under the plans, the venue would be “small and intimate,” enabling audiences of up to 25 to watch various performances including poetry recitals, monologues and small theatre productions.

It is expected the opening hours would be no earlier than 9am and no laater than 11pm.

Well-known resident Janet Martin, who has a long-established background in the arts and creative sector in the city, is behind the plans.

Mrs Martin has previously developed arts premises Robbins Lane Studios and Barnabas Arts House in Newport.

The former public toilets were put up for auction at Paul Fosh Auctions last year with a guide price of £4,000.

The Grade-II Listed gents’ toilet block, which was put up for auction by Newport City Council, was sold for an undisclosed fee in a private sale.

Mrs Martin said the person who “won” the toilets withdrew and she eventually bought them through the city council.

The building has stood proudly in the Alexandra Road area, near the city’s famous docks, for generations.

The disused WC came with a small parcel of land and borders an area of car parking.

Newport City Council granted permission for the project with a requirement for the development to begin within the next five years.