CUSTOMERS at Blackburn’s latest eaterie, who park on the pavement just yards from the restaurant, have been blasted by a senior councillor.

Motorists who drive onto the footpath outside Frankie’s, the new burger diner in Salford, are being warned they also risk heavy fines.

But bosses there say they are just as concerned and have installed police parking notices in their windows.

Several drivers are already understood to have been fined by the police, and Blackburn with Darwen Council is also planning a highways crackdown.

Fed-up shoppers have signalled their unhappiness at the makeshift car park, outside the former Pitchers bar premises.

Cllr Jim Smith, the council’s environment executive member, said: “I believe that the police have already been around there, fining a number of drivers, as they are technically parking opposite zig-zag lines.

“It is just plain laziness.

“The frustrating thing is that there are perfectly serviceable car parks within 100 yards in Penny Street and Brown Street, which are free to use after 6pm.

“The council’s enforcement officers will also be looking at this issue in the near future.”

One angry shopper, who asked not to be named, described the parking situation around the restaurant as 'atrocious'.

“Yesterday evening an elderly woman was forced to walk in the road with her shopping bag, as approximately 10 to 15 cars had been parked on the pedestrianised area directly outside.

“This is a regular event in the early evening and most nights,” he said.

Another officer worker, based nearby, said: “You would think that if they are stuffing their faces with chips and burgers and ice cream, a little bit of extra exercise wouldn’t go amiss really.”

Managing director Shaheena Patel said: “We have been working closely with police and the council on this matter since we opened in Blackburn. These cars are obstructing the footpath for others and we have been asking people not to park there.”

She said the restaurant would not object to bollards being erected, along the edge of the pavement, to deter rogue drivers.

The £500,000 restaurant opened just over a fortnight ago and is the company’s second site, alongside another outlet in Batley, West Yorkshire.

The diner, which includes a dessert bar, created 15 full-time and 10 part-time posts.