London and Manchester lead UK casual dining growth

London and cities in the north of England have led the UK in showing the greatest leaps in casual dining over the past three years, according to new figures.
The Casual Dining in the UK report from Savills ranked the top 50 towns and cities to show the biggest growth in such restaurant brands since the end of 2012 and found that the capital’s West End led the way, followed by the City of London.
In third was Manchester, with Leeds, Liverpool, Aberdeen, Glasgow, Bath, Cardiff and Milton Keynes all making it into the top ten.
Other towns and cities to see big growth in the past few years included Islington, Birmingham, Reading, Leicester, Nottingham, Cambridge, Norwich and Newcastle.
In terms of cities with the highest total number of casual dining restaurants, the West End, the City of London, Manchester and Leeds topped the list again, with Birmingham in fifth, Glasgow in sixth, Liverpool in seventh, Milton Keynes in eighth, Nottingham in ninth and Aberdeen in tenth place.
Savills claimed the report showed that people are now eating in restaurants more often, with the most successful food formats over the next five years set to be premium fast food, all day and flexible eating, street food, premium casual dining and third party delivery.
David Bell, Head of Leisure at Savills, added: “It’s interesting to look at the lower half of the ranking, which includes locations such as Basingstoke, Chester, Bromley and St Albans, as these are places where this is clear opportunity. We would expect to see more brands targeting these towns and increasing the supply.”
On the other end of the restaurant scale, Osteria Francescana was recently named the best in the world after taking second place for the previous two years.
The Modena destination, led by renowned Chef Massimo Bottura, topped the annual World’s Best Restaurant list and displaced El Celler de Can Roca in Girona, Spain which took top spot in 2015.
Eleven Madison Park in New York was named third best, with Central in Peru taking fourth and previous winner Noma in Copenhagen rounding out the top five.
By Owen Mckeon
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