A BUSINESSMAN from Kilmacolm has been working around the ‘cluck’ to bring former restaurant and bar in Greenock’s town centre back to life - as a fried chicken diner.

Experienced chef Rashith Siriwardhana is hoping to create half a dozen jobs by re-opening the former WestEnd Bar and Kitchen on West Blackhall Street under a new name next month.

The talented cook believes his new restaurant, called Bird Chicken Shop, will introduce some fresh flavours to the local dining scene when it launches next month.

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The 35-year-old will already be a familiar face to many of those who frequent Inverclyde’s eateries, having worked at the ever-popular Punto in Kilmacolm and been part of the team that launched 1830 Eatery in Gourock.

But Rashith’s latest business is his first solo venture and he believes it will offer him the opportunity to put his own stamp on things.

Greenock Telegraph: Experienced chef breathing new life into former restaurant in Greenock.

The industry veteran, who has been a chef for 15 years, has got his own hands dirty by designing the new-look interior for the premises, which has included cutting up old wooden doors and attaching them to the wall.

He said: “I want people to feel something different when they come in. I don’t think anywhere else in Inverclyde will have this sort of interior or offering.

“Everything has changed from what was there before, most of the work here like the painting and the decorating I’ve done myself.

“I’m going for a look where everything is a bit odd, there are different chairs and tables and things on the walls.

“I wanted to do something on my own and I wanted it to be different, so I looked around at what was on offer in the area.

“I thought it should be something authentic and freshly cooked, as well as bringing some new flavours for people to try out.

“It’s mainly going to be fried chicken, burgers, wings, loaded fries – all that sort of thing.

“The name is going to be Bird Chicken Shop which I think is something quirky and a bit different.

“This is the first time I’ve had my own place and it’s very exciting to have the freedom to do what I want and be creative.

“I looked around this area and I didn’t really feel there was something like this around here, you have to go to Buck’s Bar in Glasgow if you want this kind of experience.

“I’ll probably bring some kind of Asian flavours and sauces into it as well.”

The restaurant owner hopes to help boost Greenock’s struggling high street by re-opening the venue and bring more people into the town centre.

Greenock Telegraph: Experienced chef breathing new life into former restaurant in Greenock.

He told the Tele: “It’s a risk but it’s worth taking if it helps out.

“People are always saying the town centre is dead and there’s not much happening, but we’re hoping to be a part of changing that, hopefully this can help the local economy and create jobs as well.

“I think we’ll employ around six to eight people and give them the chance to get an experience in a place like this.

“I want it to be something fresh when people come in, something brand new.”