A POPULAR Uxbridge pub has closed to make way for an American-style burger restaurant.
Employees at Baroosh, in the town centre, were left in shock after management told them to shut up shop on Tuesday.
Site owner McMullen, a brewer and retailer based in Hertfordshire, has let the freehold site to American burger chain Five Guys on a 15-year lease.
McMullen’s retail director Heydon Mizon said: “The bar has traded profitably since its purchase 12 years ago but the property is not meeting its potential and it is felt that a different concept is better suited to the local market.
“Many of our team will be offered positions elsewhere should they wish to relocate.”
Molly Catalano, communications director at Five Guys, confirmed: “We are excited to open in Uxbridge in late Spring or early summer.”
A meeting with Baroosh employees and McMullen executives has been arranged for 3pm today (Friday) when they expect to find out more about the future of their jobs.
A Hillingdon Council spokesman said: “It is a private site and because no ‘change of use’ planning permission was required this is not something we have been involved with.”
The first Five Guys opened in Virginia, USA in 1986.
Originally a family business - the name represents the five Murrell brothers who run it - the company began offering franchise opportunities in 2003.
They sold more than 300 units in just 18 months and there are now more than 1,000 locations across the world with 1,500 in development.
The first UK restaurant launched in Covent Garden in July last year, with branches in Reading and Islington opening soon after.
More branches are scheduled to open in Guildford, Kingston and Manchester’s Trafford Centre in the coming months.
Since the news was announced, people living nearby have been sharing their opinions on social media.
While some welcome the idea, others mourned the loss of what they say was one of Uxbridge’s ‘nicer’ bars.
@ShesA1ThatJulie: where can I go for good wine now..
@CarrotyD: I really liked it in there. The food was really good too. Back to the Three Tuns for me...
@UxbridgeForward Shame that Baroosh is gone, great bar, great staff...new restaurant could be good for Uxbridge let’s see
@Kay_Clem: Noo! That was the only slightly upmarket bar.
@AileenAshe glad it’s not another Italian food chain! #gotthemall
@mistermarkjones: A giant kids zone with soft play areas, etc would go well in that space. And I think it would prosper too.
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