A Darlington restaurant says they have "lost the battle" and will now re-brand and change its name after long negotiations with a chain in Bradford which goes by a similar name.

Akbar the Great which is based on Duke Street in Darlington says they have been "compelled" to make the changes after they were served notice by the chain to alter their name.

The Indian restaurant first opened its doors in 2019, and has accumulated nearly 5,000 followers online and is the third best-rated restaurant in town, boasting a five star score on TripAdvisor.

Now, owners have reacted in despair as they begin the "daunting" re-brand, calling on their customers to continue to support them through the transition.

In a social media post online, the restaurant said: "Akbar the Great, a cherished family-owned business since 2019, which took over an established enterprise dating back to 2016, faces an unprecedented challenge.

"We have recently received a notice from 'AKBARS', a multinational Indian restaurant chain based in Bradford, demanding an immediate name change.

"Despite months of arduous paperwork and negotiations, Akbar the Great has regrettably lost the battle. We find ourselves compelled to undergo a name change.

"We at Akbar the Great now stand at a crossroads, grappling with the daunting prospect of rebranding. Will the goodwill painstakingly built over the years, amidst the challenges of COVID-19, seamlessly transition to a new identity?

"We shall rebrand as ABU’S and hopefully be fully transitioned by May 1, 2024. In this time of uncertainty, my family turns to its loyal friends and supporters.


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"Please keep supporting our family-run restaurant.

"We remain resolute in our commitment to serving the Darlington community and look forward to embarking on this new chapter with the support of our valued friends and patrons. Thank you."

Akbars in Bradford has been contacted for comment.