PLANS have been submitted for a new fast-food restaurant on Rhyl High Street have sparked mixed views over its benefits for the town.

KFC is pushing ahead with plans to take over the former Bonmarché clothing store – situated opposite McDonald’s – which closed down after the company went into administration at the end of last year.

A planning statement submitted by Shrewsbury developer Gastronomy Foods, on behalf of KFC, to Denbighshire County Council said the development would “increase the viability and vitality of the street” – though not all residents agree.

A layout design of the 38-cover fast-food restaurant submitted to Denbighshire County Council.

A layout design of the 38-cover fast-food restaurant submitted to Denbighshire County Council.

The fast-food chain already has a premises on Wellington Street – the early plans have not confirmed whether that restaurant would cease to operate if the fresh plans are accepted.

The new restaurant would have space for 38 diners and be open between 10am and midnight from Monday to Sunday. Gastronomy Foods said the development would be compliant with town centre policies and that “no unacceptable late-night activity” would result from the development.

“The restaurant would be a recognised town centre use and would encourage higher footfall, enhance the vitality and viability of the area and make better use of the property,” it said.

Plans for a McDonald’s drive-thru restaurant on Fford Derwen were met the strong opposition last year: the development offered 65 full-time jobs at a site left vacant for more than four years.

Residents, councillors and Vale of Clwyd MP voiced their opposition due to concerns including flooding and a rise in obesity, but the plans were eventually approved by Denbighshire's planning committee by eight votes to seven.

And the new KFC proposal, which was submitted on Wednesday, have already caused a stir after being shared on social media, where residents aired a mix of views.

One commenter said: “We need proper shops, not food shops. Keep this up [and] we'll have a high street full of takeaways. No wonder people go out of town to buy things because the lack of shops that sell items people want.”

Another person said: “I think the issue is that there is no change. Same old takeaway rubbish, time and time again. I have no problem with anyone moving premises but [it] would be nice to see some life back on the high street. I just can’t see it.”

A third said: “As if we don’t have enough [takeaways] and enough obese people. If [the council] grant it then in years to come you’ll have to dig deep to compensate.”

However other residents said they would support a new fast-food restaurant in the town.

One said: “Anything is better than a boarded up building. Unless business rates are cut and parking restrictions are lifted there isn't much hope for the town centre. I shop out of town now but would be delighted to return if there were more small businesses catering for our day to day needs. No incentive for any start up business here now. Denbigh, Ruthin and Prestatyn are managing to stay alive. Why not Rhyl?”

Another said: “Rhyl needs a Nando’s. And one or two slightly upmarket, fast-food places. Not just cheap burger and chicken joints.

“A Thai, a Mexican, more variety to bring people here to eat. Shops are dying but towns are becoming more foodie now.”

Another commented: “I don't understand what the problem is really. It's not a new shop, it's just moving from the old premises, and let's be honest if any other business wanted the shop they have had plenty of opportunity to snap it up before now.”