Fried chicken chain Popeyes will open a restaurant and drive-thru at the new retail park in Bishop Auckland.

The Louisiana-based brand will move into the new Fieldon Bridge Retail and Leisure Park development later this year.

Plans include fifty seats inside, outdoor seating, a drive-thru, kerb-side pick-up bays and a car park.

The Northern Echo: Popeyes' food.Popeyes' food. (Image: PR)

Neil Williamson, Popeyes’ Newcastle-born Chief Operating Officer and, said: “Following the success of our Metrocentre restaurant, we are thrilled to bring Popeyes to Bishop Auckland, marking our second venture in the North East.

“Our most recent openings have been some of the biggest to date, not just in the UK but for Popeyes globally, and we’re confident that our new drive thru restaurant in Bishop Auckland will be just as popular.”

The Northern Echo: The unit Popeyes will occupy currently under construction.The unit Popeyes will occupy currently under construction. (Image: SARAH CALDECOTT)

The brand is famous for its Louisiana chicken sandwiches, American biscuits and gravy and handmade milkshakes.

The Bishop Auckland site will also serve a breakfast menu consisting of rolls, muffins and hash browns.

The Northern Echo: A Popeyes iconic chicken sandwich.A Popeyes iconic chicken sandwich.

Neil added: “The brand has a real following in America, and I hope people will come along and find out what we’re about.

“I believe that our legendary menu and Southern hospitality will really win the hearts and tastebuds of the North East.”

The Northern Echo: Work underway at the site where Popeyes will be based.Work underway at the site where Popeyes will be based. (Image: SARAH CALDECOTT)

The Northern Echo: The Bishop Auckland Retail and Leisure Park.The Bishop Auckland Retail and Leisure Park. (Image: SARAH CALDECOTT)

Popeyes becomes the latest brand to sign up to the new multi-million-pound retail development in the County Durham town.

Dominos, Burger King, Wickes, and The Range are among the businesses also singed up.

The chain revealed rapid expansion plans on Monday (January 22) to almost double its UK footprint this year, creating 2,000 jobs.

New stores will also be opened in Exeter, Manchester, Glasgow, Swansea and Birmingham.

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The Northern Echo: Popeyes' Metrocentre restaurant.Popeyes' Metrocentre restaurant.

It comes two weeks after TDR Capital, the private equity firm which part-owns Asda, increased its shareholding to take effective control of Popeyes UK.

The American firm, which has 4,000 restaurants globally, first came to the UK in November 2021.

It now has 38 sites here employing 2,300 staff, with the Metrocentre venue being its fourth store, and first outside the South East.