AN American style diner just off the A12 has closed in mysterious circumstances.

The owners of Empire Diner announced the closure on the restaurant’s Facebook page, with a post saying the business would remain closed “until further notice”.

There is no indication given as to the reasons behind the closure.

The Empire, located off the A12 northbound at Rivenhall, was opened by businessman and catering expert Mark Mascar in June 2016, in the premises of the former 8-ball Diner.

The business had become a popular hangout for car enthusiasts and hosted meets for clubs from all over the country.

The diner had also started hosting live music events in an attempt to branch out into live entertainment.

Tina Townsend, chairman of Witham Chamber of Commerce, said: “We are very disappointed to hear about the closure of the Empire Diner.

“Any business based in the area closing down is obviously bad news for Witham, especially regarding job losses. We wish all of the staff effected and Mr Mascar all the best for the future.”

Throughout the business’ tenure concerns had been raised by Mr Mascar about the prospect of the diner becoming an accident blackspot because of poor signage in the area.

Meetings took place between Highways England and the owners, however no solution was agreed.

The premises has been blighted by problems over the years because of its location in such close proximity to the A12 trunk road, with many people calling it dangerous.

The Times repeatedly attempted to contact the owners for an explanation but none was provided before the N newspaper went to press.