A new chicken and pizza shop will be coming to a street with “too many fast food shops” despite protests from neighbours.

The council has given a Dallas Chicken and Pizza franchise permission to convert the empty retail shop at 81 Whitley Street into a takeaway and restaurant.

Dallas Chicken and Pizza had sought to open from 11am to 1pm but the council has limited the closing time to 11pm.

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The ground floor unit was most recently occupied by Loans2go, a pay day loan shop.

Nine neighbours objected to the plan, saying the change would result in too many restaurants/takeaways on the Whitley Street shopping parade.

One said: “We have so many various eateries in Whitley Street, whether sit down or takeaway.

“Why we would need or allow yet another is incomprehensible – even more so in the present climate, when so many will collapse from lack of use during the lockdown and will be unable to reopen due to financial constraints.”

Another said: “Frankly there are too many fast food shops in Whitley Street already and adding another one seems madness.”

But the council’s planning team said the proposal aligns with its policies.

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Neighbours also raised concern about unwanted smells and odours, additional litter – exacerbating existing problems –, vermin and increased traffic at the busy roundabout and noise and anti-social behaviour from customers.

One neighbour said: “The pungent cooking smells are almost intolerable in this area already, also the litter factor which often is dumped over our front wall.”

Council officers said conditions would be applied to ensure smells, litter and vermin are not issues, while opening times will be limited to 11pm.

They said no significant harm would be caused to the road network, nor to pedestrians.

Neighbours also said the proposal would not make a positive contribution to the local character and distinctiveness of the area and particular concern was raised about the external extractor fan.

The proposed extractor fan is adjacent to the Christchurch Conservation and Grade II listed Whitley villa.

Council officers said it would cause a degree of harm to the settings of the heritage assets but this is deemed to be “less than substantial with appropriate mitigation”.

A condition has been applied requiring the extractor fan to be painted and maintained in a colour to be agreed by the council.

There are currently nine takeaways/restaurants on Whitley Street – a fairly short road – including Indian, Chinese, Korean, chicken, kebab and pizza options.

Dallas Chicken has approximately 19 stores across England, mostly in London, and specialises in fried chicken, grilled chicken, burgers, ribs and pizzas.

This is not the first time neighbours have objected to takeaway plans in the area.

Plans for a fish and chip shop and a cafe/restaurant proposal were both approved by the council this year despite residents raising concerns.