The owner of a popular Italian restaurant in Horwich is overjoyed after his restaurant went from a rating of zero to four in a recent inspection.

Rocco's Italian Restaurant on Chorley New Road, Horwich, was handed a rating of zero at a recent inspection on May 4 - but owner Rosario Latona requested a re-inspection as he believed the rating did not reflect his restaurant's standards.

Rosario said the rating was due to books not being ready, not down to hygiene issues.

Inspectors have since been back to the restaurant for a follow-up visit and have rated Rocco's a four out of five.

Rosario said the zero ratring has impacted the footflow at his restaurant but he is confident people will be back to enjoy a 'great experience'.

He said: "We got rated a four last week, the inspectors came back and they gave us a four so that's a big improvement -  well there wasn't much to improve.

"The inspector was with us for an hour-and-a-half and she said everything was okay.

"Being rated a zero did affect my business, we lost a lot of customers.

"People need to know our new rating because we lost a lot of customers who were our regulars.

"Lot of our customers have supported us, they couldn't believe the rating, they have been coming here for twenty years and they supported us before and they are continuing to support us after.

"But a lot of other people have switched and gone somewhere else so we want them to come back.

"It feels very good to have a four now, it's fantastic because that means we have taken care of the books, taken care of the level two certificates and it represents my business, the zero didn't.

"Everything now is in place.

"Four is good, four is actually great and people need to know because we lost a lot of customers who were new to us because they saw we were rated zero.

"To me zero means there are rats in the restaurant but we have no rats, we are clean.

"Give us a two or a three whilst we sort out paperwork but don't rate us zero."

Rosario said he has plans for the resturant.

He said: "We are in the process of changing our menu which is exciting and we have a new professional chef who was previously employed in a couple of very busy restaurants in Bolton and Horwich, so he knows what he is doing.

"We can always promise our customers good food, good staff and all at a good price, we will just carry on doing what we always do best but make sure we meet the standards the inspectors need to see."

The inspection report has not been updated on the Food Standard Agency's website but there is a note stating there was a recent inspection and it will be updated soon.

Rosario said he cannot wait to welcome customers back.