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23  July

Burger King follows Greggs in pulling out of Welshpool development

13/06/2024 @ 10:18


The multi-million-pound hotel and retail development taking shape at Buttington roundabout is being remodelled following Burger King’s decision to pull out, it was revealed at a Town Council meeting last night (Wednesday).

Councillors at the Planning Meeting reiterated their opposition to the out-of-town development after being asked to consider tweaks to the plans that will also see a 40-room hotel built.

The amendments include altering an approved drive-thru, which was initially for Greggs, and later Burger King, to two non-drive-thru units instead.

This is down to Burger King changing their mind about opening on the development, which is opposite the current McDonald’s, as they felt they wouldn’t be able to compete.

The applicant however said that the drive-thru Starbucks will still go ahead on the site.

The change to the plans from the applicant, TDH Estates, declares: “The drive-thru connected with Lime Kiln Cottage (unit 2) has been let to Starbucks which will provide a bespoke, attractive building which is to incorporate a ‘visitor’ style entrance foyer to add to the offer.

“Originally the front unit (unit 1) was to be let to Greggs but over the four-year period they have decided they no longer want a unit with a drive-thru facility and we have looked for another occupier to take the unit as permitted.

“We have had discussions over an 18-month period with a number of prospective tenants and at one point had terms agreed with a new tenant to take the unit. Very annoyingly they pulled out just as the Agreement for Lease was ready for signature. The only other interest we have had over this period was from a prospective tenant.

“However, they concluded that they would want a larger unit than we can provide on the restaurant part of the scheme and not intrude on to the hotel element and ultimately decided they could not compete with the McDonald’s located opposite our site.

“Extensive marketing of the drive-thru unit has been undertaken including all the operators in this market but no other tenant has come forward wanting a drive-thru as approved.”

The development has been fiercely opposed by the Town Council from day one, and last night, Cllr Dr Ben Gwalchmai said: “We have historically, as we were requested to by the people of Buttington, completely objected to this development and Powys (County Council) have rode roughshod over our Town Council’s wishes many times. I propose we vote against it again to make it clear that we think it shouldn’t be happening.

“The people of Buttington don’t want it to happen because it will, in their words, bring more destruction, more environmental damage and way too much traffic into their area.”

It was passed with just abstention, so the verdict and comments will be forward to Powys County Council who make the final decision.