It's a question people living in Southport have asked for years - why doesn't the town have a Burger King?

While there are a couple of Subway, KFC and McDonald's restaurants, the lack of a Burger King is quite the local mystery, and topic of many a conversation.

Sandgrounders craving a Whopper have to travel some 18 miles to get their hands on one, with the nearest sites being in Bootle and Bamber Bridge.

Since McDonald's on Eastbank Street closed its doors in 2014, a lot of people have said a Burger King should take its place.

There have never been any plans submitted to turn this building into a Burger King, but rumours of someone opening a franchise elsewhere in the town have recently resurfaced.

One man who lives in the town told the ECHO : "I've heard there's going to be a Burger King once the lockdowns are done."

Another said: "There were rumours flying about [Burger King] were planning on opening a massive restaurant in Central 12 but I haven't heard anything since. It would be great, I only ever have one when I'm in Liverpool at the moment."

However, Burger King has quashed the hearsay.

The Plant Based Whopper by Burger King
People living in Southport are some 18 miles from their nearest Burger King

Their spokesperson said: "There are currently no plans to open a restaurant at this location, but we are regularly reviewing new sites to bring Burger King UK's great-tasting products to more customers and will keep you informed of further information, if it becomes available."

More whispers come in the form of Sefton Council "not wanting" a Burger King in Southport.

The council has previously refuted this, though, saying it has no control over planning applications it receives.

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A council spokesman previously told the ECHO: "We do not have any control over the planning applications we receive.

"With every application we receive we assess it on its own individual merits and it will go through the usual statutory planning process.”

Burger King is a franchise so, in theory, anyone could open one if they have enough capital.

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PointFranchise.com says aspiring franchisees must have a minimum total investment of £250,000 to £800,000 depending on the type and size of the restaurant model.

In addition to this, 4.5% of the profits are allocated to Burger King as 'royalty fees'.

A Facebook page called "Southport needs a Burger King" was set up in May 2014. It currently has 628 likes.