An international chain has moved a significant step closer to investing in a town centre.

It comes after initial plans by US giant Taco Bell for a restaurant in Lowestoft were given the green light.

Eastern Daily Press: The proposed elevations for the Taco Bell restaurant in Lowestoft.The proposed elevations for the Taco Bell restaurant in Lowestoft. (Image: Hone Edwards Associates)

With "consent for the display of illuminated advertising" being given the go ahead by East Suffolk Council last week, a second application centring around an extraction system is currently "awaiting decision."

An "Illuminated Advertisement Consent" application was lodged with the council in April for "externally illuminated fascia signage and externally illuminated projecting sign to each frontage of premises" at the former McDonald's restaurant on London Road North.

The popular restaurant on the main approach to Lowestoft town centre had been in town for more than 35 years when it closed in April last year.

Illuminated Advertisement Consent plans lodged with the council by agents Beamish Planning Consultancy, on behalf of T Bello Group Limited, for the "currently vacant ground floor commercial premises" at 35 London Road North was approved by East Suffolk Council under delegated powers last week.

A letter from the agents to the council had said: "The premises are currently vacant, having until recently been occupied by McDonalds.

"The proposed signage will have no adverse impact upon amenity or public safety, and therefore express advertisement consent should be granted for that signage, subject to the standard advertisement conditions."

A report from a delegated officer at the council said: "The application seeks to install signage in similar positions to where signage was located prior to the premises becoming vacant.

Eastern Daily Press: Change of use plans have been given the go-ahead for the former Suffolk House building in London Road North, Lowestoft.Change of use plans have been given the go-ahead for the former Suffolk House building in London Road North, Lowestoft. (Image: Mick Howes)

"The proposed colour is considered largely muted and respectful of the area, and whilst the mural uses more bold colours it is not considered out of keeping with the area."

In recommending that "planning permission be granted" subject to conditions and in granting approval, a decision notice letter to the agents from the council stated: "Permission is hereby granted by East Suffolk Council."

With Taco Bell being an American-based chain of fast food restaurants that specialises in Mexican-inspired cuisine, a full planning application - which centres around "installation of replacement plant and extraction system to ground floor commercial premises" - is likely to be decided in the coming weeks.