A NEW McDonald's restaurant and drive-thru in Ulverston has been given the go ahead.

South Lakeland District Council's planning committee yesterday approved the proposal for the hamburger restaurant to be built by the Booth's supermarket at Oubas Hill in the town.

The McDonald's is to be positioned where the current recycling facilities lie, and is expected to create at least 30 full time and 20 part time jobs.

There were 157 letters of objection to the plan, plus 47 letters and a petition in support and SLDC planners had recommended approval.

Ulverston resident Peter Howlett told the meeting at Kendal Town Hall that he had serious concerns over the litter which would result from the project going ahead, and also over broader environmental issues including single use plastic utilised by McDonald's and added pollution due to the idling engines of waiting drive-thru customers.

"This decision is probably the first real test of South Lakeland District Council's new Green Pledge," said Mr Howlett.

"Here is a marvellous opportunity to show these fine words really mean something."

Cllr Judy Filmore, who due to declaring an interest was unable to vote on the plan but spoke as a member of the public, pointed out that Ulverston had seven takeaways and the opening of the new McDonald's would have an adverse effect on these local businesses.

And Ulverston town councillor Phil Dixon, who described the McDonald's golden arches as "totemic" of the fast food industry, said the development would do little to help the fight against obesity.

Concerns from objectors were also raised over the effect on traffic congestion on the nearby A590, and Cllr Janette Jenkinson said she had worries those using the drive-thru element of restaurant would cause litter problems in sites further afield such as Bardsea.

However, Cllr Michael Cornah said he had monitored a similar development in Lytham which in his view had no impact on litter problems or levels of anti-social behaviour in the area and he felt there were no reasons to object to the proposal in respect of planning issues.

The plan was approved with Cllr Jenkinson the only one present who voted against the proposal.

However, after the meeting opponents said they remained unhappy about the move.

"What chance has a little town like Ulverston got against a multi-national like McDonald's?" said local resident Martin Gilbert.

According to the application, it is planned that that when fully operational, the new McDonald's restaurant will be open seven days a week from 6am to midnight.