THE restaurants Frankie & Benny's and Chiquito have applied for premises licences for their new Friars Walk outlets in Newport, part of the multi-million-pound city centre shopping and restaurant complex and regeneration scheme.

The licences would apply to Units R2A and R4 of Usk Plaza respectively and would allow them to sell alcohol between 10am and midnight, sell late-night refreshment between 11pm and 12.30am, and play recorded music between 8am and 12.30am Monday to Sunday.

Friars Walk, which is being backed by a £90 million loan from Newport council, is due to open in November next year and businesses already signed up to take space include Cineworld, Next, Topshop and restaurants including Nandos and Cosmo.

Work at the site is coming on apace with steel frames going up above the level of a perimeter fence put up while work goes on.

Developers Queensberry and contractors Bowmer and Kirkland are starting construction with what will become the Debenhams store, and will demolish part of the former Iceland building.

To comment on the applications, write to the Licensing Team, Public Protection, Newport council, Information Station, Queensway, Newport, NP20 4AX before September 15.