A NEW 150-seater restaurant serving ‘wood-fired’ pizza has opened in Accrington.

The Village Pizzeria Takeaway and Restaurant features a large pizza oven capable of making ‘authentic’ 18-inch pizzas.

The owners said they were hoping it would attract customers from across the county looking for that Italian-style pizza.

The Blackburn Road restaurant was formerly the Fusion Grill which closed last winter and has been refitted at a cost of £60,000.

A total of 12 staff have been employed at the halal restaurant which had its official launch last weekend.

Imran Aftab said: “We wanted to give the people of Accrington something quite unique. The clay wood-fired oven is able to cook a range of sizes up to 18-inch pizzas and we feel is the most unique in the region.

“We don’t think anyone else around has an oven like this.

“It is all about cooking pizzas the distinctive way with a fresh base and ingredients. It is the way pizza was meant to be cooked.

“We also serve chicken shawarma and this is directly imported. We don’t think anyone else in the region uses this type of authentic shawarma.”

Imran said he was proud be launching the restaurant and was delighted to open. He said: “It has been a difficult period for everyone and restaurants in particular and we wanted to come out of lockdown with a sense of positivity.

“We are encouraging people from outside of the town to try our food in line with restrictions. Our menu also features a range of burgers, shakes and authentic coffee.

“We have a second floor function room where we can host small functions. Hopefully after June 21 things will be getting back to normal.”