AN historic Glasgow building is being ­transformed into an ­upmarket eaterie.

The distinctive Hutchesons' Hall is being given a £1.3million makeover ahead of its ­relaunch as a new city centre cafe bar and restaurant.

The landmark building in the heart of the Merchant City quarter of Glasgow has been empty for the last six years after sustaining severe water damage during storms.

The National Trust for Scotland owns the hall which has an eye catching white facade, clock tower and large stained glass windows and had been trying to find a new tenant for several years.

Restaurateur James Rusk has got the go-ahead to use the A-listed hall in Ingram Street for his latest business venture. He already owns city steakhouse The Butchershop Bar & Grill, in Sauchiehall Street.

The businessman, who is vice chairman of the Glasgow Restaurant Association, plans to create at least 50 jobs.

Mr Rusk said: "The building is steeped in nostalgia, a feeling of time standing still and I had an overwhelming urge to clean down the cobwebs, pull off the dust sheets and invite Glasgow round for dinner to feel the energy of this incredible space.

"We've been working with the National Trust for Scotland in the background for the last two years trying to bring a new purpose to this unique, standalone building that is soaked in layers of history and culture."

The hall was designed and built by Glasgow architect David Hamilton in the early 19th Century and named after the Hutcheson brothers George and Thomas whose statues stand at the front of the building.