A FORMER Argos store in York looks set to become a 'family-friendly' restaurant with food to cater for all tastes.

Plans have been submitted to City of York Council to turn the former Argos store in Piccadilly into a chicken restaurant.

Pepe's Piri Piri - a chain of 177 restaurants with outlets in Leeds and Bradford - bills itself as 'the home of fresh flame-grilled chicken’.

Owners are seeking to take over the former Argos store which closed during the Covid lockdown period.

If approved, it would bring the building back to life. It has been closed for three years despite efforts to reopen it for new purposes.

York Press: Empty Argos store in PiccadillyEmpty Argos store in Piccadilly

As previously reported in The Press in 2022, Bundobust, which specialises in Indian street food and craft beer and opened its first restaurant in Leeds in 2014, won planning approval to take over the Piccadilly site.

However, a year later, the company pulled out - The Press was told the prohibitive cost of renovations scuppered the plans.

The new application from Pepe's would see the overall design of the outside remain the same with only the shopfront changed.

Inside, however, the ground floor layout would be altered to create a kitchen, seating area and customer toilet.

The opening hours would be Monday to Friday from 11am to 11.30pm and Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 11.30pm.

The new restaurant plans to employ 12 full-time staff and five part-time staff.

In the Design and Access Statement to planners, the applicant said: "The restaurant will help regenerate the current building and help inject money back into the community by providing jobs to locals and providing a healthy option of food.

York Press: Selection of food at Pepe's Piri PiriSelection of food at Pepe's Piri Piri

"The proposed restaurant will provide a family friendly dining experience with family seating areas, providing healthy grilled food, as part of the new healthy style of living, something which is limited in the area and would be very successful."

You can view the full planning application ( ref 23/01602/ADV) at: planningaccess.york.gov.uk

Pepe’s Piri Piri serves up a range of chicken dishes, from kebabs and burgers to quesadillas, and pittas, burritos and wings. Lamb and beef dishes are also on the menu as well as a selection of platters for sharing. Vegetarian choices are available too as are kids meals.

The chicken restaurant would be the latest to make Piccadilly its home, revitalising a once tired part of the city centre, with German Doner Kebab having also opened nearby in the former Brighthouse building and Cresci pizzeria in the former Pavers shoe shop opposite.