Taco Bell, the Yum! Brands fast casual chain, has lined up four new openings, in Brighton, Paisley, Barnsley and Sheffield, MCA has learnt.

The Tex-Mex brand, which currently has 18 stores in the UK, expects to open four within the year when taking into account a forthcoming opening in Glasgow city centre, and another understood to be in York.

It will open a 100-cover, two-storey restaurant at 95 Western Road, Brighton, under the franchise with the Cascade Group, which has previously opened sites in Southampton, Poole, Chichester and Woking, and had “strong growth plans for the future”.

Planning permission has been submitted for a 100-cover restaurant and drive-thru at Phoenix Retail Park in Paisley with The Adil Group, which recently announced a site in Glasgow city centre, operates more than 120 KFC, Burger King and Costa Coffee sites across the UK under franchise, and has plans to open “double-digit figures over the next five years” under the Taco Bell brand.

QFM, Taco Bell’s largest franchisee will open the brand’s third restaurant in Sheffield, on Broughton Lane, as well its first standalone drive thru in Rockingham, Barnsley.

Nick Dawson, Taco Bell UK general manager, told MCA: “There is so much love and excitement for the brand in the UK so our goal is to continue to spread the love and open in locations where we can conveniently cater to as many people who are excited to try Taco Bell as possible. We will build out our presence in our current regions and expand into new areas as indicated by our move into Scotland.

“We’ll be looking for those locations which best enable us to feed people at lunch and dinner as well as late night and possibly breakfast. That means locations like Brighton, with high footfall and high visibility, which will include high street locations as a focus, as well as drive thrus and food courts.”