A new drive-thru McDonald’s in Bradley Stoke has been granted a 24/7 food license despite objections from dozens of neighbours.

Residents and councilors fear the Willow Brook Mall restaurant will cause ‘untold misery’ for people living nearby. But South Gloucestershire Council’s licensing sub-committee has approved the fast food giant’s request to serve hot food and hot drinks around the clock.

The decision was made after members heard that none of the authorities, including police, environmental health and trading standards, had concerns.

Some of the 37 residents who filed objections made impassioned pleas to the panel during a sometimes heated hearing at the Kingswood Civic Center today (September 6).

Bradley Stoke South ward Conservative Cllr Roger Avenin told the meeting: ‘The area is mainly residential with a few shops. This is not a business park.

“It will have a heavy impact on the inhabitants. No wonder the inhabitants are mobilizing.

“Police were called to Willow Brook due to unwanted characters late at night. We have race boys with hot rods and sawed off exhausts racing the roads of Bradley Stoke.

“This application will undoubtedly impose untold misery on a large number of inhabitants whose homes are close to these settlements, so close that they encroach on the nature reserve.”

McDonald’s in Bradley Stoke has been allowed to operate 24/7

Karen Pullen, who has lived next door to the site for 21 years, said: “The granting of a 24-hour license will give McDonald’s carte blanche to disrupt the lives of local people 24/7. There will be no respite at all. »

She said 24/7 would create a public nuisance and a “clear risk to public safety”.

Councilor Bradley Stoke and mum-of-five Angela Morey told members: ‘This will be the first 24/7 McDonald’s in South Gloucestershire so we are being used as a trial.

“This could open the door to many more licenses operating 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

“Overnight we are seeing hundreds, if not thousands, of additional vehicles being routed through our very quiet area each night, which can cause accidents.

“McDonald’s business model is based on constantly shouting your order out the window. It’s next to people’s homes.

She told the panel, “I’m asking you not to let the avalanche come to our quiet, sleeping town.”

Councilors heard that Tesco was open 24 hours a day when planning permission was originally sought for McDonald’s and the 24 hour Starbucks next door, but that was no longer the case and the Circumstances were now different.

McDonald’s attorney Leo Charalambides said authorities approved the request for late-night refreshments to be sold from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m., times that require a hot food and drink license.

He said they were the experts and the panel was legally bound to give their views “careful consideration”.

“It’s not a repeat of the planning,” Mr. Charalambides told the subcommittee.

“You as a council have already decided to allow a 24 hour catering operation to operate and that is a good suitable location.

“It’s a busy commercial area, not a residential area.”

He said McDonald’s could not be held responsible for anti-social behavior outside the premises and the car park had speed bumps so there would be no boy racers on site.

The lawyer said the company regularly removes litter from the surrounding area and the microphone system for drivers to order food does not require raising their voices.

Subcommittee member Cllr Colin Hunt and Mr. Charalambides clashed several times during the hearing.

The councilor accused the solicitor of trying to claim the local authority’s environmental health and trading standards officers were the experts they should trust while branding the organization ‘useless’ for having initially failed to properly post the license notice.

Mr Charalambides said the “failure” of board administrative processes was irrelevant and had nothing to do with the professionalism of regulatory services teams.

At another point, the lawyer accused the panel members of “predetermining” the decision by suggesting that this was not a good location for a 24/7 McDonald’s, which they denied.

He said the subcommittee had no evidence to deny the request other than “a lot of unfounded passion and fear” on the part of residents.

The outlet is due to open on September 14 and employs 130 people.

South Gloucestershire Council initially refused planning permission in 2019, but this was overturned by a government inspector on appeal the following year.

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