A SECOND branch of a long-established seafood restaurant could be opening in Bournemouth.

Westbeach, which is based at Pier Approach, has submitted a planning application to open a restaurant at the former Lloyds Pharmacy unit in Southbourne Grove.

The eatery, which would be called Westbeach Local, would feature an open plan kitchen, bar and outdoor seating. A “significant” investment would be made to open the restaurant.

The existing Westbeach restaurant has been open for 18 years, but the planning application submitted by operations and commercial director Matthew Piovan states: “We are looking for satellite properties in affluent suburbs which will welcome our local, fresh, sophisticated seafood offer.”

It adds: “Westbeach Local will feature open cooking, seafood counters and a quality wine-lead bar offer. The ambiance and interior will be chic and comfortable with plenty of visual stimulation and interest.

“The menu will include small plates, sharers and high level gastro fish dishes with shellfish on display and a oyster/seafood bar.

“We aim to attract business, casual, family and gastro/fine dining markets. The investment level will be significant, reflecting the quality of the offer and service and ensuring long-term support and success.”

A “key draw” for the venue would be outside seating, the application continues.

An existing garage at the rear of the property would be demolished to create space for four cars and bin storage.

Inside the restaurant, chefs would prepare food using wood-fired ovens, charcoal-based grills and, potentially, tandoori ovens to “enhance the theatre of the offer”.

Guests will be able to interact with the chefs cooking their meals due to the open plan kitchen, the application states.

“The bar and kitchen counter will have displays of fresh fish ready to be cooked allowing customers to see the fresh ingredients used in their meals and add to the theatre of their visit,” according to Westbeach.

“Dishes will focus on the quality of the ingredient allowing the natural flavours of the dishes to come through.”

The planning application is currently with Bournemouth council.