New restaurant set to open at former Little Waitrose store this year

Former Ipswich Waitrose

Waitrose pulled out of Ipswich town centre just before Christmas - Credit: Paul Geater

A restaurant is set to open inside the former Little Waitrose shop in Ipswich Town Hall.

Ipswich Borough Council's executive is set to debate the proposals during its meeting next week, with the council having already secured a deal with the so far unnamed restaurant.

The restaurant is said to have signed a 25-year lease with the council to occupy the former shop, which closed in December.

It is hoped the restaurant will open this winter.

The Old Post Office in Ipswich

The Botanist should open in the Old Post Office in Ipswich in later this year - Credit: Katy Sandalls

It comes as the town looks to bounce back from the coronavirus pandemic, with The Botanist having also secured a tenancy at the Old Post Office building on the Cornhill.

It is hoped more disused units in the town will soon become occupied, with Ipswich Vision planning a "connected town" – a place for people to live with easy access to major facilities.

David Ellesmere, Leader of Ipswich Borough Council. Picture: Sarah Lucy Brown

David Ellesmere, Labour group leader of Ipswich Borough Council - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

David Ellesmere, leader of Ipswich Borough Council, said: “I am really pleased we have been able to secure a tenant for the Little Waitrose unit.

"A new quality restaurant in the heart of the Town Centre is another boost for Ipswich, following closely on the back of the great news that the Botanist are planning on opening in the Old Post Office later this year.

"The town centre has taken a real knock during Covid but there’s a lot of renewed commercial interest at the moment and I’m hopeful that we’ll start to see the number of vacant properties start to reduce over the coming months."