Plans for 'Lounge' bar and restaurant at former Pizza Express on Scarborough's seafront
A national bar and restaurant chain is in talks to take over an empty premises on Scarborough’s seafront.
Loungers UK Limited has confirmed that it intends to purchase the former Pizza Express building in Sandside to open the latest in its Lounge franchise of bars.
The company, which also runs the Cosy Club brand, has submitted a licence application to Scarborough Council that, if granted, would allow for the sale of alcohol seven days a week from 10am until 00.30am.
Pizza Express closed its Scarborough branch in August five years after opening after reaching a company voluntary arrangement (CVA) to reduce its costs.
Loungers property director, Tom Trenchard, told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that the company was in negotiations with the building’s landlord and had submitted the licence application in order to speed up the process.
He added that currently, the nearest Lounge is in Hull, though one will be opening soon in Ripon and the expansion into Scarborough had been speeded up when the building became available.
Mr Trenchard said: “Scarborough is an operational leap for us as our nearest place is Hull but the site became available because of the Pizza Express CVA and the landlord took it back.
“Scarborough is a town we have admired for a long time and you have what we think is the best unit in town so we were like ‘okay, we can park the operational distance for now and we will take that one’.
“Scarborough is definitely on the hit list and has been for a long time, but the whole thing was accelerated by that site coming up.”
Mr Trenchard said that Lounge would offer more throughout the day compared to the building’s previous occupant.
He said: “I think our offer is much more of an all-day offer [compared to Pizza Express] and it has something for absolutely everyone. In the morning we do a fantastic breakfast for allcomers, great lunch offer, afternoon tea and cakes and then become probably one of the best restaurants in town in the evening.
“So it goes from first thing in the morning to closing time and hopefully we can get a little bit of outside seating as well. I think it will make a big impact down there.”
If everything goes to plan it is hoped that the Lounge could open around March time next year, creating 25 full and part-time jobs in the process.
The closing date for the licence application is Wednesday December 16. The company has also applied to have seating outside the premises.
To view the licence application visit www.scarborough.gov.uk/pizza-express-notice-application.