Forest Town McDonald's plans rejected

Forest Town McDonald's plans rejected
Forest Town McDonald's plans rejected

Plans for a new fast food outlet in Forest Town have been declined as councillors refused to rubber stamp the scheme.

Fast food giant McDonalds submitted plans for a two storey restaurant complete with drive through and play area on the car park at Asda on Old Mill Lane.

However, the plans, which were recommended for approval by planning officers, were rejected by Mansfield District Council’s planning applications committee.

Councillor Mick Barton, who is the ward councillor for the Maun Valley Ward, spoke passionately at a meeting of the committee, urging members to reject the plans.

Coun Barton, who started a petition against the development, said he was ‘over the moon’ that the plans would not be going ahead.

“I’m chuffed to bits”, he said.

“A McDonald's is the last thing we needed, it shouldn’t be on the doorstep.

“Mansfield suffers the worst obesity levels in Nottinghamshire, so a McDonald’s near four schools isn’t appropriate.

Coun Barton collected 300 hand written signatures, and just over 1,500 on an online petition.

“It beggars belief that we are even considering this site," he added.

“This will have a knock on effect on health and social care for many years to come.

Forest Town residents also spoke at the meeting, which took place on September 23.

Mr Rose, a resident of Old Mill Lane, appealed to members of the planning committee to reject the plans on the grounds that the new restaurant would attract anti-social behaviour and increase traffic.

“I takes me ten minutes as it is to get out of my drive, the traffic will be horrendous,” Mr Rose said.

“We get quite a lot of anti-social behaviour and boy racers in this area.”

Jane Robinson, another Forest Town resident said: “A report from the Healthy Mansfield Commission aims to cut obesity and cut unhealthy options.

“There are six fast food outlets already in walking distance.

“We do not need any more food outlets.

“Can the council justify this when 1,000 people say no?”

Councillor Martin Wright, district councillor for Holly ward said: “Residents have contacted me with concerns. It’s no secret we are in the grip of an obesity crisis, and Mansfield is one of the worst districts.

“Obesity is entirely avoidable.

“20.9 per cent of 10 to 11 year olds in Mansfield are obese.”

John Robson, Senior Acquisitions Surveyor for Mcdonald’s in The North East, Yorkshire and East Midlands, said the development was in an appropriate location.

Mr Robson said: “This is an appropriate location. There are objections but we have worked with Mansfield District Council to abide by their policy.

“McDonald’s works hard to understand the lives of customers, and help them make informed choices. 90 percent of our menu is under 500 calories, and we have new items such as grilled chicken, porridge and salads.

“85 per cent of traffic visiting McDonald’s is already on the highway, meaning 15 extra cars on the rod per hour at peak times.

“The highways department made no objections to the plans.

“This restaurant would offer benefits such as extra jobs - we invest heavily in our staff, offering national qualifications.”

Councillors on the planning applications committee voted to reject the plans, with seven councillors voting against the plans, and two in favour.

McDonald’s now have the right to appeal the decision.