A proposal to open a takeaway in part of a former gym and beauty salon has been rejected on the grounds the shop would be too close to local schools.
Wakefield Council’s planning services department said the development was contrary to a new planing policy, adopted on January 18, to prevent hot food takeaways being built within a 400m radius of primary and secondary schools.
A report produced by planning officers, which outlines the reasons behind the refusal, said the policy stems from growing research and evidence into Britain’s rising obesity problem.
It aims to improve the health of people living in the district and reduce the availability of fast food to children on their way to and from school.
The report reads: “It is considered that the policy is of substantial weight and importance to justify the refusal of the proposed hot takeaway use on the subject site given its proximity to several schools.”
Planning officers said the proposal, which also included changing the rest of the now-vacant building into two retail units and four flats, would have meant a new takeaway opening close to Sacred Heart Catholic Primary School, the West End Academy and the Hemsworth Arts and Community Academy.
The report also said that, as there are two other takeaways nearby, a third could result in an “over-concentration” of the outlets.
It said: “It is considered that a proliferation of takeaways could tempt children into consuming greater quantities of unhealthy food, which would undermine initiatives to promote a healthy diet, particularly in schools.”
The report said the principle of reusing the building, formerly known as The Workhouse, for retail and residential purposes was “reasonable and sustainable”.
But it said the takeaway could also “detrimentally affect” people living in the proposed flats due to noise and odour.