Duchess of Rutland says McDonald’s ‘should serve up pheasant burgers and nuggets’ if fast food chain wins right to open its first restaurant in England’s smallest county
- Rutland is the only county in England without a McDonald’s but one is being built
- County Council is recommending it should open and create 65 local jobs
- Emma Manners, Duchess of Rutland, told GMB they don’t source local food
The Duchess of Rutland declared McDonald’s should serve up pheasant burgers instead of beef ones in a bizarre debate about whether the fast food restaurant should open up in the county.
Residents of Rutland, Leicestershire have always taken great pride in it being the only county in England without a McDonald’s.
So there was understandable outrage when the local council recommended opening a 24-hour drive through on the outskirts of Oakham.
Locals feared it ‘wouldn’t be in keeping with the area’, that it would risk children getting overweight and create anti-social behaviour.
But Emma Manners, the Duchess of Rutland’s complaint is that the chain ‘does not serve local food’.
She told Good Morning Britain today: ‘My issue with McDonald’s is they don’t do locally sourced food.
‘They should serve up pheasant burgers and nuggets. A pheasant is the cheapest food at all. If you bought a pheasant off me it would cost you nothing, I would give it to you.
Emma Manners, the Duchess of Rutland (pictured with Apprentice candidate Thomas Skinner) says she does not want McDonald’s opening in her title county because the chain ‘does not serve local food’
‘If McDonald’s served pheasants I would be happy with the junk food outlet as long as they use county side people.’
She debated the opening of the restaurant with Apprentice contestant Thomas Skinner, who is backing the chain’s new Rutland venture.
Residents of Rutland, Leicestershire have always taken great pride in it being the only county in England without a McDonald’s
Currently the nearest MacDonald’s branches to Rutland are outside the county in Stamford, Corby and Melton Mowbray.
Rutland County Council officers are recommending the authority’s planning committee approve to the 24/7 drive-through on the outskirts of Oakham at its meeting later on today.
McDonald’s says the 94-cover restaurant would create 65 jobs for the area.
Planning officers say it would not have an adverse impact on neighbouring homes or the character of the surrounding area.
The planners’ recommendation states: ‘The proposed development would be sited on land allocated for employment uses (and) is considered acceptable.
‘It would not have an adverse impact on neighbouring residential amenities and/or the character of the surrounding area.
‘This application is being reported to the committee as the proposed development would be contrary to adopted local plan policies and represent a departure from the adopted local plan, however the proposals would provide an employment generating use on the site.’
But after the application was advertised, 78 representations were received both in support of and objecting to the proposed development. Of these, 55 objected and 23 supported the development.
So there was understandable outrage when the local council recommended opening a 24-hour drive through on the outskirts of Oakham (plan pictured)
Local David Taylor, 39, said: ‘For years we’ve proudly boasted that we’re the only county in England without a McDonald’s.
‘It a shame the council have bowed to the big corporations. It doesn’t suit our town and our way of living.
‘I guarantee once it opens, we’ll have a KFC and a Burger King next. I worry for our children’s health as a result.’
Robert Kent, also of Oakham, said: ‘I think in an area of outstanding natural beauty and a traditional market town adopting the banality of the golden arches would a sad day.
‘Fast food of poor quality leading to inevitable litter in the surrounding area is not what we need.
‘Even if it creates a few jobs for school kids.’
A third – called Miss M Brookes – added: ‘Rutland is the only county that doesn’t have any main brand fast food restaurants.
‘And I honestly think that’s one of loveliest facts about our county.
‘Our high street has been noticeably struggling recently and with the introduction of a McDonald’s I strongly believe that this would cause further hospitality collapses around the town.
‘Within the younger generations, McDonald’s is a widely known meeting place for modified cars to then go on and perform street races and the location is almost perfect for it.’ The decision will be made later on today.
The Duchess told Good Morning Britain: ‘If McDonald’s served pheasants I would be happy with the junk food outlet as long as they use county side people.’
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