AN East Lancs town finally looks set for its first McDonald’s restaurant, following completion of the sale of land near a shopping mall.

Pendle Rise shopping centre owners in Nelson have completed the sale of the town's former bus station and multi-storey car park site nearby at Broadway to McDonald’s. The site is also close to Nelson railway station and bus terminal.

McDonald’s has confirmed the sale is complete and building work is expected to start  soon. The new restaurant could open later this year.

A spokesman for Future Properties Limited, which owns Pendle Rise, said: “This is fantastic news for Nelson.

"The formal hand-over is done. This sale represents an important investment in the town centre. The new McDonalds’ restaurant will attract people into the town and also help wider changes taking place.

He added: “This process has been floating-around for two or three years. It was slowed by the pandemic and months of lock-downs.

"But the sale is now formally completed and the land now belongs to McDonald’s. Work is hopefully going to start as soon as possible with, potentially, the new restaurant opening by the end of this year.”

He added: “This investment will do wonders for Nelson. It will help regenerate the wider town centre. It’s a good location near key roads and the railway and bus stations.

"The new McDonald’s will be open through the day and night, so there will be a good flow of customers coming into Nelson at different times of the day.

“There has never been a McDonald’s in Nelson before, or other burger restaurants like Wimpey in the past. So we are really pleased. This represents a first for Nelson. People are excited about this. ”

A McDonald’s spokesman said: “We are pleased to be progressing with our plans and hope to have everything ready to open our new restaurant towards the end of this year or early next year.”

The new drive-thru is expected to create 20 full-time and 40 part-time jobs, according to plans previously approved by Pendle Council. Parking space at the Broadway site is earmarked for 40 cars.