Pizza chain accused of “smoke and mirrors” over new Royston store

Domino's Pizza

Domino's Pizza - Credit: Archant

A pizza chain looking to open a store in Royston has been accused of employing “smoke and mirrors” tactics to get their business hours extended.

Domino’s Pizza is set to open a takeaway unit in Melbourn Street, Royston, and has applied to get permission to have the store open for deliveries between 11am-midnight from Monday-Thursday, and 11am-3am on Friday and Saturday. The chain is also seeking permission to remain open until 11pm on Sundays and bank holidays.

But Royston town councillors opposed the change as they fear it would disturb local residents.

Cllr F John Smith told Monday’s meeting of the town council planning committee: “It would see deliveries going from there to whoever in the town wants to consume a pizza. It is not for wholesalers to deliver stock to them.

“Any change to the hours that are allowed at the moment is going to cause a disturbance in the area and we shouldn’t allow that to happen.”

And Cllr John Davison said: “Under no circumstances should this be allowed to happen. It could set a precedent for anyone else who wants to open late at night.”

Domino’s were given planning permission for the takeaway, which is at the site of a former tool-hire shop, earlier this year. They are due to open before Christmas, and have said the new store will bring 25-35 jobs to the town.

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Royston’s Mayor, Cllr Bob Smith, said: “I assumed this application was for receipt of stock, but now that I know it is for food going out that has only strengthened my feelings.

“I fear this has been a smoke and mirrors exercise, because the original application was for 11am-11pm opening. I strongly object to this proposal

The plans will now be considered by North Herts District Council’s planning committee at its next meeting.

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