A shop and restaurant is set to open in Pitsea town centre.

Plans have been submitted to Basildon Council to transform a shop, in High Road, which closed last month.

The independent business has been welcomed by residents and councillors who are fed up with the lack of bars, restaurants and cafes on offer in Pitsea.

Earlier this week the Echo revealed the nearby Bull Inn pub, on London Road, could soon be demolished to make way for 23 new homes.

The Railway pub, on the High Road, was also knocked down to make way for the new market, which opened earlier this month.

Retired Jan Watson, of Gifford Green, Pitsea, said: “We have got a lot of places to eat in Pitsea, but it’s all fast food takeaways and greasy spoons so I would never actually go to them myself. I would much rather go to a nice coffee shop and restaurant like this. I like being able to just pop to Pitsea town centre for a nice cup of coffee and a pastry.

“I am just glad a building is being filled and I think anything is worth a try, especially if it’s going to be something different for the area.”

Pitsea is currently undergoing a £30million revamp, which includes a huge Morrisons supermarket and a new Aldi store.

David Abrahall, Tory councillor for Pitsea South East, believes the new business will further boost the town.

He said: “I’m looking forward to it because Pitsea needs something like this.

“For years I have been campaigning for more restaurants and bars in the area, because Pitsea is unlike any other towns because that’s what’s lacking.

“I have always appealed for businesses to come forward and now is a particularly good time because of the regeneration.”

It is not yet known howmany staff will be employed or what times the coffee shop and restaurant would be open, but alcohol will not be served.

Mike Le-Surf, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for South Basildon and East Thurrock, added: “Anything that could bring jobs for local people is always a good thing and hopefully it will be a benefit to Pitsea, especially as the whole area is undergoing a redevelopment.

Coffee shops are very popular and it’s good to offer something different. People don’t always want to go into pubs. I believe in choice.”

Councillors are set to decide on the plans within months.