TACO Bell will be coming to Southend High Street soon after plans for a new restaurant and takeaway were given the green light by council bosses.

The fast-food chain will be replacing the former Moss Bros store in the High Street.

The plans will see around 25 tables installed in former shop as well as new signage on the front of the building.

It is the latest big name fast-food takeaway eyeing up plans to open in south Essex, with Wagamama coming to London Road and Five Guys opening at Basildon’s Festival Leisure Park.

Resident Adam Ball, 47, from Southend, said: “I very much welcome this and think it’s a good move for the High Street. I will be going to try it out as I’ve never had it before and I’ve always fancied it and thought it’s appealing.

“We have not got anything like this in Southend so I think it will be great to have one in our High Street. I think it will be very popular here in Southend and it will be a very welcomed addition.

“I also think it’s good to see another empty shop being used up and take up by a big company as well.

“I hope it will help bring in more big businesses and help to boost the High Street footfall.”

The plans also include a new security shutter as well as a new extraction system to control odour levels.

Taco Bell currently has sites in Basildon, Lakeside, Chelmsford and Colchester.

The American chain specialises in Mexican dishes, such as tacos, nachos and burritos.

Carole Mulroney, councillor responsible for environment, culture and tourism, said: “I am very pleased to see an empty being taken and used up by a well known brand like this that people will go to and it’s also a prominent spot in the High Street too.

“It helps to add to the vibrance of the High Street and it’s good to see businesses coming into the town and a good turn over of firms.”

The new restaurant will be based entirely on the ground floor, with flats on the floor above unaffected by the scheme.

The council officers report into the plans says: “The principle of the development is acceptable. The proposal would have an acceptable impact on the amenities of neighbouring occupiers. Overall, the proposal would have an acceptable impact on the character and appearance of the application site and the wider street scene.”

There are currently fewer than 100 Taco Bell currently operating in the UK.