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Police and planners clash over 'pavement cafe' proposal for Liscard McDonald's
PLANS to create a pavement cafe at a fast-food restaurant in Liscard have sparked concerns over increased anti-social behaviour and litter.
McDonald’s hopes to add a little alfresco dining by creating a space for up to seven tables and 20 chairs outside the restaurant on Liscard Way.
The area will be enclosed by a removable barrier, with tables and chairs removed in the evening.
If given the go-ahead, the pavement cafe will only be used until 7pm in order to minimise noise and disturbance. It will be limited to use by paying customers.
Wirral Council’s planning committee will discuss the proposals and are recommending approval.
But both Merseyside Police and Liscard ward member councillor Janette Williamson are concerned about disruption.
In a report to the committee, Cllr Williamson said: “Liscard already has a disproportionately high level of anti-social behaviour which Cllr Bernie Mooney and I have been trying to address with local residents, police and the anti-social behaviour team.
“The accumulation of rubbish is inevitable with outdoors, fast-food eating.
"As you know, the council is already stretched to breaking point with its funding for street cleaning.”
Merseyside Police raised concerns the proposed seating area will increase anti-social behaviour in the area, with the Neighbourhood Policing team stating that if approved, it will lead to an increase in incidents and calls.
The applicant also has concerns about anti-social behaviour, but says it has been involved with police, social services and youth workers to form an "action group’" in the hope of reducing the problem.
The planning report says the seating area will be overlooked by passing members of the public on the busy pedestrian street, and by staff “through the windows.”
It states: “It is not considered there is any evidence the proposed seating will result in an increase in anti-social behaviour.
“The hours of the seating can be controlled by a condition, and the seats can be brought in at 7pm.
“In reference to concerns regarding litter, staff at the restaurant currently carry out a daily extended 'trash walk', picking up all litter in the local area, not just McDonald’s packaging.
“It is not considered the proposed outdoor seating will increase litter.”
The pavement cafe proposal will be discussed by Wirral Council’s planning committee at Wallasey Town Hall, on Thursday, December 19, from 6pm, when the final decision will rest with councillors.
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