THE next occupant of the former Frankie and Benny’s restaurant at Gemini Retail Park has been revealed.

Located at Gemini 8, near to junction eight of the M62 at Burtonwood, the family eatery chain’s branch permanently closed in June this year.

And the unit is now set to reopen as a Tim Hortons.

The Canadian fast food giant, which is famous for its coffee and doughnuts as well as serving other items, already has an outlet in Golden Square Shopping Centre in Warrington town centre.

Warrington Guardian: Tim Hortons opens in Golden Square.

Warrington Borough Council has approved an application for planning permission for the change of use of the premises, submitted by TH UK and Ireland Ltd.

This includes the creation of a drive-thru window for the branch, only yards away from an existing drive-thru Starbucks.

A total of 25 full-time and 35 part-time jobs are set to be created as a result.

Submission documents stated: “Tim Hortons is a relatively new entrant to the UK market and can best be described as a restaurant chain with a coffee and bakehouse offer.

“The brand was founded in 1964 in Ontario, Canada.

“It has since grown into Canada’s most loved brand, with more than 4,500 stores from coast to coast.

“Known affectionately as Timmy’s, it is a place famous for its fresh coffee and baked goods and is visited by more than 5.3million Canadians daily – approximately 15 per cent of the population.

“Tim Hortons opened its first store in the UK in 2017 and now has 29 units across all four countries of the UK, with more opening soon.

“Its current focus is to expand its drive-thru model across the UK, including at the proposal site.

“The Tim Hortons offer is different from that provided by the likes of McDonalds, KFC and Burger King and is comparable to that provided by coffee shop operators such as Costa or Starbucks with a substantial part of the offer comprising hot and cold beverages and bakery goods including an extensive choice of donuts.

“The hot food offer includes paninis and melts as well as hot sandwiches and wraps, again similar to other coffee shop operators.

“Tim Hortons also places great emphasis on the ambiance of its coffee shop and restaurant facilities, encouraging customers to dine in.”

Warrington Guardian:

How the unit could look

In summer 2020, the Restaurant Group – which owns the Frankie and Benny’s brand – confirmed plans to shut 125 sites across the UK, cutting 3,000 jobs.

A sign posted in the Gemini brand’s window upon its closure stated: “We are sorry to inform you this restaurant is permanently closed.

“Thanks for all the good times.

“Visit our website to find your nearest Frankie’s.”

The closest remaining branches to the town are Liverpool, the Trafford Centre and Cheshire Oaks.

WBC’s consent for the change of use was granted on Wednesday, October 6.