AFTER two years of planning and renovation, the Harnham bunker has opened as a dedicated youth music studio.

The Sound Emporium will provide six hours of free youth service a week, and it is hoped that youngsters across Salisbury will benefit from the new recording studio.

Co-founder Ross Sanderson said that he was excited about the future, and told the crowd at the opening ceremony today: "We have made it. It has taken a couple of years, but we have made it."

Planning permission for the bunker's conversion was granted in January 2016, with building work starting shortly afterwards thanks to grant of £100,000 from Wiltshire Council.

There was a mixed reception about the prospect of a recording studio moving into a residential area, with neighbours and various city councillors opposing the scheme.

But some residents, including Mayor Derek Brown have been converted after seeing the transformation of the Cold-War structure.

The Mayor said: "I am delighted about this, it will provide entertainment and amenities for all in Salisbury.

"I was originally against the idea, as it was a large amount of money; But once it fitted within the budget I became a supporter.

"Anything which gives young people the chance to develop is something I support."

Wiltshire Council Chairman Richard Britton said that there had been concerns about the lack of car parking and noise, but felt that "you couldn't find a better place for a studio".

"I think it will be a big success and it is brilliant to see the project come into fruition.

Although the building is officially open, co-founder Kayleigh McCormick said there had been a lot uncertainty.

She said: "Every day we thought this was never going to happen.

"We have had a lot of sleepless nights."

Ross said he had put his family through a nightmare with the stress, but the venue would give youngsters something special.

He said: "They can make this their venue for years to come, and there will be a wealth of them coming here.

"We want to build on what we have got here, and put Salisbury on the map."