A hot food takeaway from an A1 retail unit (shop) in a town centre location in Tyne and Wear was refused for harm to the health and wellbeing of the local community.

In this case, the site was in a high street already dominated by takeaway uses. The area immediately adjoining the site to the west comprised four takeaways consecutively. The inspector also considered the contextual evidence and noted that greater than 15 per cent of the year 6 pupils in the ward area were overweight, a contributing factor referenced in the local plan policy.

The inspector afforded the policy significant weight as it had been examined and modified at the time of the original application. He stated that “controlling the proliferation of fast food outlets has a role to play in reducing the extent of obesity on a local level”, especially in this area where the town centre already accounted for 13 per cent of the whole borough’s takeaways.

Inspector: Graeme Robbie; Written representations

Source:  Planning Resource, 27 September 2017

Local Comment:  A neighbourhood plan policy could equally well address this issue.  Do we have too many fast food outlets in Birkenhead & Tranmere? Wirral has recently been identified as the fattest place in England, so perhaps it is now time to start thinking about how to help people make healthier eating choices? – Philip Barton