A new pub and restaurant is hiring for chefs ahead of its planned opening in Gerrards Cross later this year. 

Oakman Inns are planning to open up The Journeyman at 10 Packhorse Road - the old M&S Food store. 

The pub company submitted plans for the new Mediterranean-inspired pub and restaurant back in March. 

The plans have not yet been given the go-ahead by Buckinghamshire Council, but they are planning an opening in autumn this year and are already hiring for chefs. 

They have launched a website for the pub, with job opportunities including senior sous chef, sous chef and head chef. 

As part of their overhaul of the site, Oakman Inns asked Bucks Council if they could make changes to the existing shop canopy, replace the shopfront and build four roof lights at the back, as well as adding an outside seating area. 

The plans have largely had the backing of the Gerrards Cross community, who have submitted a number of letters of support. 

Madeleine Bailey said the pub will be a "real asset to the Gerrards Cross High Street and a great use of space". 

Andy Ross wrote: "This is a brilliant investment into the high street of Gerrards Cross adding facilities and investment making it a destination for social engagement locally. Attracting people to the town is essential for the continuation of the town/community.

"The litany of closed shops (a womens clothes shop, a man's clothes shop and jewellers in the last six months alone) is an indication of both the costs of units in Gerrards Cross but also the lack of ability to make a return on the current footfall.

"Here we have an opportunity to see investment to halt and I hope reverse the slide."

Sean Aldridge added: "The application and proposed development is a pleasing attempt to address the disappointing entropy from which the Gerrards Cross high street has been allowed to suffer.

"The council should welcome, and arguably feel some pressure to facilitate, the opportunity to attract private investment that returns some vibrancy to the heart of the town."

However, not everyone is happy with the plans to turn the vacant shop into a pub and restaurant. 

Dr Bhav Kotecha wrote: "Those that live nearby should not have their right to a peaceful home life destroyed. 

"The high street does need improving but does it really need a rowdy pub? To suggest there is nowhere else to drink and socialise is ridiculous."

Brian Molloy added: "I am concerned that the anti social aspects of ventilation machinery noise, odour from cooking, and the potential of vermin being attracted to the food waste haven't been adequately addresses and resolved."

Oakman Inns have tried to address concerns over noise and smells, saying all windows and doors will be kept closed after 9pm, and members of the public will not be allowed to enter or remain in the front outside seating terrace from 9pm to avoid noise. 

They will also not move waste or recycling or allow deliveries between 8pm and 8am. 

They have also agreed to cut the original closing time from 1am to midnight and planning documents added: "It is important and in the applicant's own interest that waste is stored appropriately to avoid attracting vermin.

"Food waste will be stored above ground level and within closed bins." 

Marks and Spencer announced in April last year it would not be renewing its lease on the store and the building has been empty ever since. 

To apply for any of the job openings at The Journeyman, go to www.thejourneymangx.co.uk