Scotch Corner services operator objects to McDonalds drive-thru plans

Scotch Corner services. Photo: Google.

A long-running battle over the ability to serve food to drivers on the A1(M) in North Yorkshire has resumed with the UK’s largest motorway service area operator objecting to plans for what could be a seventh drive-thru restaurant within a six-mile stretch of the road.

In a letter to Richmondshire District Council this week Moto has questioned the need for McDonald’s proposal for a 351sq m drive-thru restaurant on land immediately land to the north of Scotch Corner, junction 53 of the A1(M).

The multinational fast food chain has also applied to build a warehousing development for the “last mile delivery sector” and 20 electric vehicle charging points, on the four-acre greenfield site.

The proposal follows several public inquiries and proposals over the past decade about meeting the needs of motorists on the A1(M) between Durham and Wetherby.

McDonald’s already has drive-thru restaurants in the largely rural area around Scotch Corner, with one 11 miles south off junction 51 of the A1(M) and another eight miles away at Catterick Garrison, while there are other restaurants at hotels immediately off Scotch Corner.

In addition, last month plans were approved for the first McDonald’s drive-thru at a designated Motorway Services Area, four miles south of Scotch Corner off junction 52 at Catterick, alongside more cafe and restaurant space than the size of some food superstores.

Also immediately off Scotch Corner, plans have been approved for an array of restaurants at a designer outlet village as well as at the UK’s largest garden centre, the firm behind which has also lodged proposals for two drive-thru restaurants to the south of the junction.

Meanwhile, Moto has lodged plans with the council to redevelop its services and restaurants at Scotch Corner and two miles to the north at Barton, with drive-thru outlets. Another proposal, for a Burger King drive-thru, six miles away at Catterick, was submitted in 2018.

In planning papers submitted to Richmondshire District Council McDonald’s says its Scotch Corner scheme would create 105 full-time jobs and generate up to £75,000 in business rates for the authority.

However, in its objection to the authority, Moto highlights how it already offers several restaurant options 350 metres from McDonald’s proposed site, and that its revamped services would “represent a significantly more viable option to addressing the need of motorists”.

Residents in the nearby village of Middleton Tyas have also expressed opposition to McDonald’s plan.

In its objection, Middleton Tyas Parish Council said: “We are concerned that there will be a cumulative impact with the number of food outlets and restaurants in the area.

“Moto services has four, Euro garages has one, with a planning application in for another, there are restaurants at the Holiday Inn, and Vintage hotel, along
with those already approved at the designer outlet and garden centre, plus the planning application for two drive-thrus at the old Dalesway Lodge site. How much choice do drivers need?”

Residents have also raised concerns about the impact of litter posed by the several planning applications for drive thru outlets currently in the pipeline
for Scotch Corner.

Councillor Angus Thompson said the area was already suffering from large amounts of McDonald’s litter.

He said: “If we have to have these places to satisfy public needs then this is possibly the place to put it, but I can understand the concerns of the parish council, especially about litter, which I think McDonald’s could do an awful lot more to mitigate than they do at the moment.”

1 Comment

Comments are closed.