Despite stuff local opposition, UK Hooters boss Julian Mills is confident that the so-called “breastaurant” will open its Manchester branch before the end of the year.
The licence for Hooters was granted by Salford city council in June in face of 91 objections and opposition from its own mayor Paul Dennett, Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham and local MPs Rebecca Long-Bailey and Barbara Keeley.
Julian is confident that the “complex” negotiations are now coming to an end and the restaurant, with its signature scantily-clad servers, will open its doors by the end of 2023.
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“It’s no-one’s fault that it’s taken so long, but we are hoping to get it done within the next three or four weeks. It’s a bit like buying a house, but multiplied by a factor of 50, in terms of the complexity of the negotiations,” he said.
Julian said it could be the middle or the end of the year before its outlet in Salford Quays can open.
He told the Manchester Evening News that because Hooters operates on a franchise business model – similar to Burger King and McDonald’s – the Salford Hooters will not be run the same way as the current Liverpool Hooters and the two restaurants will be 'entirely unconnected'.
Julian said that once the agreement with the landlord had been signed and there were "boots on the ground" it would take between four and five months to launch the Salford Hooters.
“We are intending to employ between 50 and 60 people, but we haven’t advertised yet because we don’t know exactly when we are opening,” he added.
'I'm a waitress and my tiny work uniform is so much better than Hooters'
At the time the licence for Hooters was granted, chairman of the licensing panel, Coin John Warmisham, said the city council was ‘required by law to process a premises licence application’.
He added: “The process is set out in legislation and government guidance. The decision to grant or refuse a premises licence application or the imposition of any conditions must be within the parameters of the licensing objectives. Opinion and personal choice are not relevant or legitimate reasons to refuse an application.”
Organisations which voiced objections to the granting of the licence included Male Allies Challenging Sexism, the Women’s Equality Party, Yes Matters, FiLia, Womanchester and GM4 Women.
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