Today we can exclusively reveal plans for the biggest Nando’s outlet in the UK – on the site of the 105,000 sq ft Tesco Extra in Altrincham.
Rumours have circulated for months that the hugely popular Afro-Portuguese peri-peri chain was eyeing a site in Altrincham for what would be its 340th UK restaurant.
And we understand that a verbal agreement between the two multinationals is now in place, with contracts expected to be formally exchanged within days.
As our exclusive visual above shows, Nando’s is planning to retain the shell of the landmark if much-derided building on Manor Road – Tesco’s first store on stilts when it opened back in 2002 – and rebrand using its familiar chilli red, black and neon signage.
The proposed £15m Nando’s would have enough room for 600 covers and, in documents seen by Altrincham Today, has forecast daily consumption levels equivalent to nine tonnes of Caesar salad, 4,500 chicken drumsticks and 3,000 gallons of Sagres beer.
Tesco, which is halfway through a downsizing programme that forms the core of its 2015 turnaround strategy, is offloading the Altrincham superstore as part of an increased focus on its smaller, Express shops.
It’s understood that the 150 staff currently employed at the supermarket will undergo a retraining programme, with the store’s poultry aisle supervisor, Dave Churrasco, earmarked as head chef at the new Nando’s.
Trafford Council is known to be behind the proposed redevelopment, with a delegation of councillors recently meeting with Nando’s global marketing officer to discuss the prospect of constructing a suspended glass walkway to provide Altrincham residents with an uninterrupted passage from the new restaurant to the proposed entrance to the £70m Altair scheme.
The council also confirmed plans to allocate an additional nine car parking spaces for the extra 500,000 people the new Nando’s is expected to bring to the town annually.
Jose Frango, the UK CEO of Nando’s, said: “We’re delighted to have secured such a prominent location in Altrincham for what will now be the flagship Nando’s restaurant. We fell in love with the Tesco Extra building as soon as we saw it – it’s a thing of great beauty.”
Should an agreement be sealed over the coming days, Nando’s is hoping to take over the site by the summer. As part of a process of relationship-building with its new area, Nando’s has also agreed to set up pop-up restaurants at the Altrincham French Festival and Timperley Country Fair.
Thanks to Glued Films for help with this April Fool…