Fast food chain Leon will create up to 15 new jobs in Harrogate when the business opens its second drive-thru in early May. It will open on the site of a former dental practice on Wetherby Road where plans to open a Starbucks drive-thru were controversial in July 2021 after three previous rejections.

EG Group is behind the proposals and has confirmed that the site will become a Leon drive-in, creating “12 to 15 new jobs”. EG Group and Leon are both owned by billionaire brothers Issa, who also own Britain’s third-largest supermarket chain, Asda.

They made their fortunes running petrol stations and bought more than 70 Leon restaurants across the UK and Europe last year. The first Leon drive-in has opened in Leeds and the second in Harrogate will now follow.

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When Harrogate’s plans were approved last year, residents living nearby complained on a call that the drive-thru would ‘completely destroy’ their enjoyment of living in their homes. They also said traffic in the area was already at “breaking point” without the development.

However, a government planning inspector concluded in a report that the drive-thru would not cause ‘significant harm’ to residents’ living conditions, road safety or air quality. . The decision ran counter to another inspector who said previous plans for the site would cause “unacceptable” harm to people living nearby.


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