POPEYES top boss is hoping the new Barrhead store will help youngsters “thrive” in their careers and future careers.

The popular American chicken chain is set to open its first-ever Scottish store in the town’s new retail park on Monday, September 18 at 11am.

Ahead of the opening, the Barrhead News caught up with the brand's COO, Neil Williamson.

Expressing his excitement for the new store opening next week, Neil said: “I’m really excited about opening on Monday.

“We’ve been looking at sites in Scotland for a while now and we’ve been listening to the public on social media and there’s been a big demand for Popeyes in Scotland.

Barrhead News:

“We’ve been slowly developing the brand and opening up across the UK, so it’s about time we arrived.

“I’m very excited to be cutting the ribbon on Monday – the first 25 in the queue, both drive-thru and instore, will get a goody bag, and the first three in the queue for both will get a year’s supply of chicken sandwiches.”

As part of the opening in the town, the restaurant has employed over 120 staff from the local surrounding area.

Neil added: “We’ve hired over 120 employees from the local surrounding area, and we’ve offered them opportunities to join us as employees all the way up to management.

Barrhead News:

“It’s great to be able to give a little bit back. For some people, it’s their first job. We have 16-year-olds who have stepped into work for the first time having completed their studies and it’s great to see them thrive.

"Two weeks ago, when we started training them, they were quite timid and weren't able to talk to anyone but coming back yesterday and seeing them today, they have made friends at work and it's great to see their personalities coming out.

“It’s great to see that – hopefully it will help them thrive in their future careers and life.

“It’s also just great to be in Scotland – it’s a great place.”

Barrhead News:

On top of wanting to help youngsters have successful careers, the boss said he is also “keen” in getting involved in the local community.

He said: “We are always keen to get involved but first and foremost, it’s about delivering the brand.

“Once we have delivered that we will start building on those community links. Whether it be through the community, colleges, or food donations. We are very keen to be involved and give back.

We previously took a sneak peek around the venue and tried some of the restaurant's famous dishes.

Barrhead News:

The eatery will bring flavours of Louisiana to Scotland, with its signature 12-hour marinated chicken and original Southern biscuits and gravy.

They will also be serving brand-new breakfast items at the store.

The new store, which is situated next to Starbucks, will include a dining area for 56 people, with 16 seats outside, as well as a drive-thru.