New McDonald’s in Selly Oak granted 24-hour licence
A new 24 hour McDonald’s that is coming to Selly Oak - but some aren’t happy about it
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A new branch of McDonald’s that is coming to Selly Oak has been granted a conditional 24-hour licence by Birmingham City Council despite police concerns about crime.
The branch will sit within the Selly Oak Shopping Park which police claim has become a crime hotspot since opening two years ago. The fast food restaurant brand applied for permission to serve late night refreshment to sit-in and takeaway customers from 11pm until 5am throughout the week.
Birmingham City Council chiefs considered the application last Wednesday, and have now announced their decision to permit the licence as long as conditions are met. These include: full licensing training for staff; 24 hour CCTV; security staff on the door; an incident log; and signs requesting for customers to leave quietly.
A report of last week’s meeting details how a legal counsel on behalf of McDonald’s argued: “Police resources were not a relevant consideration”. The counsel also claimed the 24-hour operation would be better for the environment, and cited McDonald’s use of paper drinking straws and recycling of excess oil into biofuel. The report reads: “Counsel observed that this was a relevant factor because ensuring the protection of the environment linked directly to public safety, and the protection of the public from public nuisance in its widest sense.”
He also argued 24-hour operations were safer for staff who would work night shifts from 10pm to 6am and claimed staff encouraged use of this schedule.
A West Midlands Police spokesperson said: “In the last 12 months alone the site has experienced 137 recorded crimes. This accounts for four per cent of crime for the whole of the Selly Oak Ward.”
Resident voices concern
A local resident who has lived in the neighbourhood for 28 years also voiced concerns, saying: “Operating any food business in the late night may lead to unhealthy social and/or criminal activities.
“Not to mention, the cleanliness and hygiene issues as well as the university students/young age groups in the area.”
The report reads: “Members carefully considered the representations made by the police, together with the written representation made by the local resident, but were not convinced that there was an overwhelming evidential and causal link between the issues raised by the police and the effect on the licensing objectives. The applicant company was known nationally as a highly responsible operator which did take note of, and participate in, the local community for the benefit of local people.”