A RESTAURANT shut down for breaching coronavirus restrictions will reopen later today.

Grillaz in Derby Street was told to close on August 20 after police and council officers repeatedly found the eatery was overcrowded, with tables seating groups adjacent to each other, and there was no queue management.

Bolton Council said the restaurant failed to take heed of repeated visits and a final warning, urging the establishment to improve, was issued.

Now, the firm has been given permission to reopen after a visit from environmental health officers on Thursday showed "sufficient" improvements.

Councillor Hilary Fairclough, executive cabinet member for environment services regulatory, said: “As a council, we do not want to be closing businesses down at what is a very challenging time for the local economy.

“However, we will not tolerate any risk to public health, and we will not hesitate to take tough action against those that ignore repeated warnings.

“I am pleased this business got the message about the importance of social distancing and has put appropriate measures in place to keep customers safe."

Grillaz was the first venue in the town to be ordered to shut under new powers.

The closure order was implemented after residents and councillors raised concerns about the restaurant breaching covid-19 rules.

Officers from Bolton Council and Greater Manchester Police visited the eatery several times in the week before it was issued, offering advice and guidance on how it should comply with regulations.

A final warning was issued to Grillaz's owners on Monday, August 17, after no new measures to tackle queue management outside the premises were found to be in place, although inspectors did note that the owners had made efforts to implement social distancing inside.

After another follow-up visit on August 19 found that social distancing issues had still not been resolved, leaving the council with "no choice" but to serve the closure notice.

Cllr Fairclough added: “If the restaurant had taken earlier opportunities to engage with council officers and put the necessary changes in place, the closure would not have been necessary in the first place.

“We will continue to work with Grillaz, and businesses across Bolton, to ensure COVID-19 regulations are followed.

“I would like to thank local ward councillors for their support in bringing this issue to our attention.”

Previously, Bolton Council has also closed down a vape shop and says it is actively monitoring breaches of coronavirus regulations in different business sectors across the town.