Jamie’s Italian to become latest city restaurant to close

Jamie Oliver in his Italian restaurant in Norwich Royal Arcade back in its opening year (2012). Ph

Jamie Oliver in his Italian restaurant in Norwich Royal Arcade back in its opening year (2012). Photo: Bill Smith - Credit: Archant © 2012

The Norwich branch of Jamie's Italian is set to close.

Jamie's Italian, in the Royal Arcade, will close its doors for the final time on Sunday, February 10.

The restaurant, one of 25 around the country, first opened in the city centre in 2012 shortly after chef Jamie Oliver made a visit to meet the staff who would be working there.

At the time he said he was excited to be opening a restaurant in Norwich, describing the new eatery as one of the Jamie's Italian 'gems' and 'just gorgeous'.

He spoke about his links to the local area too, and said: 'I used to holiday in Norfolk every year as a kid, and obviously Delia is a good friend. She has had me up to watch the football on a number of occasions and she is an absolute legend.

'I grew up near Saffron Walden and the Cambridge restaurant and now the Norwich restaurant are the closest to there.'

On Monday, a spokesperson for the restaurant said: 'It was with much regret that the Landlord at Jamie's Italian, Norwich has decided to re-tenant the premises.

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'The premises will be vacated on February 10, 2019, and all staff will be offered support to find new roles in the local industry.

'We'd like to thank our many loyal customers for their support.'

In January last year the restaurant chain announced it would cut 12 sites as part of a restructure - but the Norwich eatery escaped unscathed.

READ MORE: 'Norwich will soon be a ghost town' - locals react to news Jamie's Italian will close

It comes after a handful of other national restaurant chains closed their Norwich branches, including Carluccio's and Prezzo.

In the last 12 months several restaurants around the city have closed their doors, including the E Street Smokehouse, Woolf and Bird and Craft Burger.

The leaseholder of Jamie's Italian has been contacted but was not able to provide any details about the future of the premises.