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Burger King set to open at Hempstead Valley Shopping Centre at the end of this month


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A drive-thru Burger King is due to open at an out-of-town shopping centre at the end of this month.

The American fast food chain is currently recruiting staff, including kitchen workers and managers ahead of the opening at Hempstead Valley in Gillingham.

A Burger King drive-thru was allowed to be built within Hempstead Valley following an appeal. Picture: DLG Architects/ BAPT Ltd
A Burger King drive-thru was allowed to be built within Hempstead Valley following an appeal. Picture: DLG Architects/ BAPT Ltd

The launch is earmarked for Thursday, June 30.

It's believed the new venture at the revamped retail outlet could create more than 30 jobs.

Medway Council initially refused permission for the restaurant over concerns about the impact on residents, litter and congestion.

But those behind the bid from Burger King successfully appealed the decision.

The diner is going next to the multi-storey car park attached to the centres flagship Marks and Spencer store.

Councillors were informed of the Planning Inspectorate's decision during a special meeting of the planning committee last September.

An architect's impression of the Burger King at Hempstead Valley Shopping Centre. Picture: DLG Architects/ BAPT Ltd
An architect's impression of the Burger King at Hempstead Valley Shopping Centre. Picture: DLG Architects/ BAPT Ltd

The inspectorate concluded the building's design would be in-keeping with the character of the mall.

It also felt it would not be harmful to highway safety or the free flow of traffic.

Additionally, it was not persuaded the plans would lead to more littering in the wider area.

The inspectorate also stated there was "unreasonable behaviour" in the decision-making process as the council didn't supply enough evidence to support the reasons for its refusal.

The authority was ordered to compensate the applicant, BAPT Ltd, with the cost of its appeal.

Hempstead Valley Shopping Centre
Hempstead Valley Shopping Centre

The figure of this is not yet known.

There used to be a Burger King at Hempstead which closed to make way for the new food hall.

The branch in Chatham High Street has also undergone extensive refurbishment.

It was open for takeaway orders only as a result of Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

Founded in 1954, Burger King has grown to become the second largest fast food hamburger chain in the world, with more than 500 branches alone in the UK.

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