Signed The Frankie & Benny’s family, the letter in the restaurant window reads: “With a heavy heart we are sad to announce the closure of our restaurant. We have been operating on the site for the past seven years. We have served many friendly faces and as much as we would like to carry on serving all you lovely people but unfortunately we are unable to do this.
“We as a family would love to thank every single customer who have wale through our doors and we hope you have many happy memories of us.
“Just remember there's a booth for you at our other Frankie and Bennys.
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“Lots of love Frankie & Bennys Mansfield Family.”
Frankie and Benny’s is the latest restaurant to face permanent closures due to the ongoing pandemic.
Frankie & Benny’s owner The Restaurant Group (TRG) is one of the biggest restaurant operators in Britain and also owns the popular restaurants Chiquito and Wagamama.
In February this year, TRG announced plans for the closure of up to 90 Frankie & Benny's and Chiquito branches by the end of 2021, with the intention of converting 12 of these sites into Wagamama outlets.
TRG bosses sent an email on Wednesday 3 June to staff in the group’s Leisure Division, stating that “a large number” of sites “will remain closed permanently".
The email blamed the ongoing pandemic for creating financial issues. It said: "The Covid-19 crisis has significantly impacted our ability to trade profitably, so we've taken the tough decision to close these restaurants now."
Due to the pandemic TRG had to place roughly 22,000 of its staff on the government’s furlough scheme, however many will now face redundancy.
Addressing the future of staff jobs, the email said: "Unfortunately, unless there are any suitable alternative roles identified, it's likely your role will be made redundant."
Jordan Booth, who worked as a supervisor on the Mansfield site said he was devastated by the closure.
“It is with a heavy heart that I can confirm Mansfield F&B’s is one of the 120 restaurants that’s had to close.“I’m devastated to say the least, F&B’s is a home from home, a safe haven for me. I started as a table busser when I first turned 16 and worked my way up to a restaurant supervisor.
“I’ve shared laughter, shed tears, met some amazing people, but most importantly it has enabled me to grow into the man I am today. That place really was somewhere special, if you’ve been to our beautiful restaurant, you know what I’m talking about. I can honestly say I’m so lucky to have met such amazing people.“I’m not asking for any sympathy here I’m really not, but you may know that I’m autistic and I find it incredibly difficult sometimes to communicate and express how I’m truly feeling. Working here took many of my daily struggles and challenged me to overcome them.
Chad has asked TRG to comment on the closure.