WORK to revamp Newport’s historic indoor market will start soon after the plans were agreed by the Welsh Government.

Consent was granted for alterations to be made to the grade two listed building, which is set to get a new lease of life thanks to a £750,000 refurbishment plan.

The scheme, funded by regeneration firm Newport Unlimited, will restore the High Street entrance to the centre of the building and create new units for use as shops or restaurants with terracing and seating.

New windows and doors will be fitted, stall fronts will be upgraded and eventually it is hoped a food academy will be created in existing offices in the Royal Chambers building.

It is hoped the work, in addition to reintroducing buses onto High Street, will attract more shoppers to a part of the city which has been neglected in recent years.

There has been a provisions market in the heart of Newport for hundreds of years.

The earliest part of the building that can be seen today dates back to 1864 and was built to replace the existing market, which was not big enough to cope with the growth of trade at that time.

It was owned by the Duke of Beaufort who sold it to the Newport Corporation in 1885.

It was later extended at a cost of £42,000 to include the Upper Dock Street entrance with its tower and a barrel-vaulted roof and this was opened in 1899.

The central section of the upper floor was added in the early 1930s and a stained glass window designed by artist Catrin Jones was later added.

Planning permission for the market’s refurbishment was granted by the city council earlier this year but the application for listed building consent had to be considered by the Welsh Government.