KFC isn’t coming but we don’t want one anyway!
People are upset because they think a new KFC will cause ‘traffic chaos’ in Tyldesley – but the fast food chain isn’t even moving in.
More than 500 people have signed a petition raising concerns about the impact of redevelopment of the former Maxilead Metals scrapyard.
Plans to build 154 homes, a nursery, doctor’s surgery, restaurants and shops were approved in January 2018, with Wigan council receiving six letters of objection at the time.
The developer Flexdane Ltd has now submitted a separate application revealing details of how Mosley Common Road site could be built up over separate phases of construction.
Documents suggest that Lidl will open a retail store on the site, but residents have speculated that one of the restaurants could be KFC.
The petition, widely shared on Facebook, has questioned the suitability of such a chain moving to the area, while expressing fears about traffic queuing to use a drive-thru.
But a spokesperson for KFC said: “We are big fans of the area but we will not be opening a restaurant on the development at [Maxilead Metal’s] former Parr Bridge works site.” Tom Clay, managing director at Flexdane, also ruled out KFC opening an outlet on the site – although they were approached.
He told the Local Democracy Reporting Service: “They did want to look but they said it was too close to an existing site they had, so they weren’t interested. That was 18 months ago, so I don’t know where these rumours have come from.”
Mr Clay said that several ‘big’ leisure providers and restaurants had shown an interest, but added that it was ‘early days’.
Talks are also ongoing with the Wigan Borough Clinical Commissioning Group with regards to the GP practice, which would be built in the second phase.
He also questioned what residents would want for the site, which had been run by Maxilead Metals for over 20 years before the firm found ‘better suited’ premises elsewhere in the borough.
“Would people have been happy if the site was a full residential scheme, or if the scrapyard stayed in place? I don’t think so,” said Mr Clay.
“It’s all down to viability and demand. I’d love to be able to bring in the likes of Marks and Spencer and TK Maxx but if there’s no interest, then they won’t come.
“It’s about finding the right people, so it’s going to be a slow burner.”