PizzaExpress opened its first restaurant on the motorway service station network this week—at Welcome Break’s Oxford Services off the M40. It is a 90-cover restaurant. More openings at Welcome Break locations are being planned. PizzaExpress chief executive Jin Long Wang said: "This new opening represents a key part of the company’s expansion, extending our brand footprint into new locations and formats.”

Yorkshire-based healthy eating concept Filmore & Union opened in Jesmond this week—its first restaurant in the north east. The brand is also opening within the John Lewis store in Newcastle in the new year. It has had an on the go operation at Newcastle station for a while.

The New World Trading Company has put in a licensing application to open a branch of its fledgling Florist brand on Hardman Street in Liverpool. It plans to take on the Old Blind School previously operated by the New Moon Pub Company.

Mitchells & Butlers has opened a branch of O’Neill’s in the Printworks leisure complex in Manchester.

Seafood restaurant group Wright Brothers has just opened its fifth location in Circus West Village by Battersea Power Station. The 150-cover site joins four other restaurants in Borough Market, Soho, Spitalfields and South Kensington.

Turtle Bay has set 21 January for the opening of its new restaurant in Winchester.

Wagamama plans to open in Chelmsford. According to Essex Live it has submitted plans for a launch in the Bond Street development.

Nando’s has just launched at the Talbot Green shopping park near Llantrisant in south Wales. It has taken on a unit previously occupied by Pizza Hut.

The Arc Inspirations group is opening a major new branch of its Manahatta restaurant and bar concept on Deansgate in Manchester next summer. The Manahatta brand already has two branches in Leeds. Arc also runs the Banyan brand.

Hawaiian raw fish concept Ahi Poke has secured a third site, on Commercial Street between Shoreditch and the City. The restaurant covers 340 square feet on the ground floor level and 335 square feet in a basement, and will open in January. It joins the first two branches of Ahi Poke in Victoria and Fitzrovia. The site was secured for the brand by Shelley Sandzer.

All you can eat Brazilian rodizio-style concept Casa Brasil opened at Cabot Circus in Bristol on Thursday (14 December). It joins Casa Brasil restaurants in Southampton, Brighton and Portsmouth.

Fast casual chicken-and-sauce concept Sticky Sisters has opened a third restaurant at the Harvey centre in Harlow, joining the first two in Farnborough and Leeds.

The Miller & Carter steakhouse brand is opening in the Sketty area of Swansea following Mitchells & Butlers’ conversion of a Toby Carvery restaurant.

Oakman Inns says it will open its first new-build pub in Amersham in February. It will launch in February, followed soon after by the Cherry Tree in Olney. Oakman also says it has acquired the freehold of its White Hart pub in Ampthill from Punch Taverns.

Gail’s Bakery has lodged an application to open on Kentish Town Road.

Gino D’Acampo’s latest new My Restaurant is opening at the Kingswood retail park in Hull this weekend.

A Wimpy franchisee is opening in Sittingbourne on Monday (18 December), local media report. The brand closed in the town in 2011. The franchisee has two other Wimpy sites at Chatham Docks and Westcliff-on-Sea.

Pret A Manger is to open more units at motorway service stations after agreeing a deal with Roadchef. Units will be opened at Chester services on the M56 before Christmas and at Clacket Lane West on the M25 early next year.

Swedish coffeeshop concept Wayne’s Coffee has confirmed its arrival in the UK under franchise with two sites: on Kensington High Street in London and by the new Crossrail station in Ilford. Wayne’s Coffee currently operates 140 stores in various countries and specialises in organic coffee and healthy food. The brand plans to roll out around the UK in due course.

Starbucks has secured permission to open a drive-through 1,800 square feet branch on Clough Road in Hull, local media report.

     

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