The 566 Mile End Road change of use to a fast food outlet was refused by the Council last December. (read report here). The applicant decided to take the application to the Planning Inspectors, appointed by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.
This appeal was refused on the grounds of the loss of a retail unit, an over-concentration of A5 (ie Fast Food) uses, the cumulative impact and levels of disturbance associated with these uses and lack of details as to how kitchen ventilation might be provided on site.
The applicant claimed in the impact statement that “As the retail unit is not financially viable to operate under the current economic climate. The new hot food takeaway will enhance the character, vitality and viability of the area and street” .
Research commissioned by the Tower Hamlets Healthy Borough Programme suggests that fast food outlets are highly profitable with higher profit margins than other small retail businesses such as corner shop.
In Tower Hamlets there are 203 hot food takeaways and 604 restaurants and cafes as of September 2008(Environmental Health database). These are clustered along the main thoroughfares in the borough – Mile End being one.
Report of the LBTH Scrutiny Review Working Group on Reducing Childhood Obesity increasing the ability of healthy choices to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee – May 2010
Fast Food Outlets in Tower Hamlets and the Provision of Healthier Food Choices – A report from the London Metropolitan University.