American chicken chain Popeyes has announced plans to open its first stand-alone restaurant in the UK. The chain has its first outlet in the country as part of the food court at Westfield Stratford opening.

Thousands of people queued to try the food at Popeyes when it opened, and the chain has now announced plans for its first stand-alone, sit-down restaurant in the country. Opening in the heart of Chelmsford, the new site will be the US icon’s debut stand-alone restaurant in the UK.

Chicken lovers travelled from all over the UK to Stratford, London in November to sample Popeyes, with guests showing up from Birmingham, Essex, and even as far north as Newcastle and York. Hours-long queues snaked through Westfield Stratford’s food court for weeks on end, with reviews even stating that one guest had waited ‘for 35 years’ to be able to get their hands on the food again. Sales at Popeyes Stratford are now among the top ten out of over 3,600 restaurants globally.

Tom Crowley, CEO at Popeyes UK, said: “We’ve been blown away by the UK’s response to Popeyes, with guests queuing for hours to try it. Our legendary menu and Southern spirit have captured the capital already, and we look forward to building on that with the launch of Chelmsford.”

The new restaurant will be located at 67/68 High Street, Chelmsford, Essex, CM1 1DH and will seat 46 guests.

“Chelmsford was the perfect place for our first sit-down restaurant; it’s close to London but sits at the very heart of Essex, which is such a vibrant part of the UK with a close-knit community ,” added Tom. “The team is really excited to open; we already know guests love the food, but now we have the opportunity to really showcase our Louisiana hospitality too.”

Peter Genna, director of global culinary innovation and product development for Popeyes brand, added: “It’s exciting to be opening the first UK restaurant in Chelmsford. Popeyes UK has ambitious plans to rapidly become a British staple and to never compromise on the quality that Popeyes is famous for. We have no doubt that Chelmsford guests will love Popeyes famous Louisiana chicken.”

Popeyes UK, the master franchisee for the United Kingdom, is aiming to open hundreds of sites across the next decade, and has also launched additional delivery kitchens with Deliveroo Editions in Battersea and Whitechapel which have seen huge take-up. Based on Deliveroo’s customer order data, Popeyes has been the most popular new restaurant launch on Deliveroo this year.

Popeyes UK’s expansion will not only make chicken fans happy, but it is also expected to generate hundreds of new jobs across the nation, spanning critical operational roles in construction, supply chain and distribution – as well as providing a direct boost to the UK hospitality sector by hiring talent to prepare and serve Popeyes world-famous products.

With 3,600 restaurants around the world, the UK represents the 11th new market for Popeyes across Europe, the Middle East and Africa, where the chain has already opened more hundreds of new sites as part of its global expansion.

Guests eager to learn more about the new Chelmsford restaurant launch can visit https://www.popeyesuk.com/restaurants/chelmsford, or follow the brand on Instagram at @PopeyesUK.


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