Takeaways face ban near Leeds schools

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TAKEAWAYS could be banned from opening near schools in a Leeds town under new rules being drawn up by the City Council.

Councillors voted in favour of creating a new policy that would enable them to control the location and concentration of hot food takeaways to encourage healthier eating.

The policy could give the council powers to veto plans for new takeaways if there are several in the area or if the proposed food outlet would be “too close” to a school.

Morley North councillor Tom Leadley proposed the motion at the full council meeting.

He said: “Obesity has increased tremendously in this country over the last 30 years or so. And one thing that seems to have happened in this time is the proliferation of hot food takeaways.”

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Coun Leadley proposed the motion following plans by McDonald’s to build a restaurant at the White Bear pub site in Tingley.

Councillors objected to the proposals on the grounds that having a fast food takeaway close to Woodkirk Academy would be a “health liability”.

Leeds City Council refused the application but the fast food giant appealed the decision. A planning inquiry ruled against the development in May over concerns about highways safety and the effect on nearby residents.

Coun Leadley said: “There are some parts of Morley, such as the town centre, where there is a lot of takeaways.

“But the thing that brought this to a head was the fact that McDonald’s wanted to put this one large takeaway so close to Woodkirk Academy. We are fairly certain that they would have exploited students at the school as their main clientele.”

The new planning policy will be drafted by the council. And Coun Leadley hopes it will come into force next year.

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