TV chef Jamie Oliver is launching a chain of bargain Italian eateries with a "pukka" pasta restaurant in Brighton.

The diner, due to open next year, will offer dishes from £5 to £8.

Jamie, 32 - who has pumped £500,000 into the £7.5million venture - said: "It has always been a desire of mine to really tackle the issue of the quality of high street dining."

The restaurant is likely to bring in thousands of pounds, boosting tourism and trade in Brighton and Hove.

Jamie's Italian will open in Black Lion Street next July in an old office block which was occupied by Lloyd's TSB up until September.

The restaurant will be the centrepiece of a huge redevelopment project which aims to restore the down-at-heel thoroughfare to its 18th Century heyday as one of Brighton's most fashionable streets.

Jamie said: "There are some little places, privately owned by dedicated people, who are doing a good job but they are few and far between and I don't think many of the chains really give consistent quality at a decent price. We aim to change all that.

"When people eat at a Jamie's Italian, I want them to really get into the food, maybe try something they wouldn't normally try, but always be safe in the knowledge that they're eating good stuff, prepared with love.

"My mentor, Gennaro Contaldo, has been helping with the menu and the staff training and so it'll all be completely authentic, rustic Italian."

The plans by Karis Developments include the redevelopment of Moore House, transforming the front if the building and the Sixties office block, and the restoration of 8 Black Lion Street, one of the few remaining Old Town buildings.

The scheme will create more than 24,000sq ft of contemporary office space over four floors, each floor with its own roof terrace and secure basement parking for 31 cars.

Pedestrian access and safety will be improved and public artwork is planned to enhance the environment.

Brian Oxley, leader of Brighton and Hove City Council, said: "It is a great tribute to the vibrancy of the city that someone like Jamie Oliver feels that he wants to open up a restaurant here.

"I am sure people will be very keen and interested to visit it and sample the delights on offer.

"It will be good for the economy and it puts Brighton and Hove on the map. It shows he has a lot of confidence in the city going forwards to invest in it and to put his name to it.

"Something like that is not a minor commitment. We look forward to welcoming him."

Josh Argiros, Karis Developments managing director said: "We are delighted to confirm that Jamie Oliver will be opening a Jamie's Italian in Black Lion Street.

"This is a real coup for Brighton. Jamie's relaxed style and fabulous food is the perfect match for the city and will undoubtedly boost our reputation as one of the best places in the UK to eat."

Two years ago Mr Oliver hit the headlines after he badgered the government to improve the quality of school dinners.

His lastest venture will provide fast, urban casual dining, open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, seven days a week.

Pasta dishes will start at £5 and will be made in the restaurant with high quality ingredients. Bread will be baked daily by artisan bakers and all the chicken will be free-range.

This is the first time the chef will have owned a restaurant of his own. He does not own the restaurant chain Fifteen which he founded in 2002.

It is owned by the Fifteen Foundation charity, he is a trustee and remains actively involved in guiding the restaurants and the young people as well as donating funds, most recently from his book, Cook with Jamie.

Jamie's Italian will work in partnership with Fifteen but while Fifteen has the training of disadvantaged young people and the highest quality food at its central core, Jamie's Italian has a different ambition - to help more people to eat out better.