THREE Brighton restaurants are shutting as the company which owns the chain goes into administration.

Casual Dining Group, which owns Bella Italia, Cafe Rouge and Las Iguanas has said it plans to cut 1,909 jobs after calling in administrators.

It is closing 91 of its 250 restaurants across the UK, including all three of its Bella Italia restaurants in Brighton.

The sites are at Brighton Marina, North Street and Market Street.

Cafe Rouge at Brighton Marina is not among the list however.

Las Iguanas restaurants in Jubilee Street and at Brighton Marina are also unaffected. 

The company’s Cafe Rouge restaurant in Prince Albert Street shut down suddenly in January, and no reason was given for the closure.

The Casual Dining Group board said entering administration was in the best interest of stakeholders during the "extreme operating environment" it is having to trade through.

The company is looking for a new owner, but said the administration would allow it to end negotiations with landlords - a "critical step" before finding a buyer.

Chief executive James Spragg said: "After reviewing all our options with advisers, it became clear that we needed to take this action in order to protect the business and secure the best possible future for Casual Dining Group as we look to conclude a potential sale.

"We are acutely aware of our duty to all employees and recognise that this is an incredibly difficult time for them.

“Working alongside the administrators we will do everything we can to support them through this process with a view to preserving as much employment as we are able to."

Bosses said all the offers they have received from potential buyers involved reducing the number of restaurants it runs and administrators therefore decided to close the sites permanently.

The full list of closures include 35 Bella Italia restaurants, 32 Cafe Rouge restaurants, 11 Las Iguanas sites and three Belgo sites.

Administrator Clare Kennedy, from Alix Partners, said: "We appreciate that this is an extremely difficult time for all those associated with Casual Dining Group.

"Our immediate priorities are to assist those whose employment has been affected by today's announcement and to secure a sale for the group in order to protect jobs and provide the group's much-loved brands with a sustainable platform for the future."