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Queues as Shropshire McDonald's drive-throughs reopen - with video and pictures

By Rob Smith | Newport | Business | Published:

Queues formed in Telford this morning as McDonald's drive-throughs across Shropshire reopened for the first time since the lockdown.

Branches across Shropshire opened at 11am, for drive-through service only, and eager customers lined up to get their first orders in.

As staff prepared to open up the Newport site a number of cars slowly drove past the entrance before parking up at Lidl opposite and waiting.

As soon as the cones were lifted drivers made their way to the drive-through window to place their orders.

The drive through at McDonald's in Newport

A member of West Mercia Police's safer neighbourhood team for Newport was on hand in a van to keep an eye on the precautions and praised the staff's organisation of the queue, and the company's liaising with police.

Ryhannon Bourton lives in Lawley and drove to Newport for a burger, after seeing "massive" queues in nearby Donnington.

"I'm pregnant, I've been waiting for McDonald's to reopen," she said.

"It sounds stupid, but I just want a cheeseburger. I've tried doing them from home but it's just not the same."

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In Donnington, the queues were divided up to ease traffic, with some cars parked opposite the restaurant. The branch is close to a roundabout near the A518 and at times traffic waiting to queue was stuck on the roundabout.

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The Wrekin Retail Park branch near Wellington is usually one of the area's busiest branches and that was the case today, with dozens of cars snaking across the car park waiting to get to the bays.

The traffic management on the car park kept cars off the busy retail park roads.

People queue for the drive through at McDonald's in Newport

Earlier Telford Police tweeted: "@McDonaldsUK restaurants in #Donnington & #Newport reopen 11am today for Drive-Through only. The SNT teams have been liaising over traffic management concerns - please follow staff directions & be patient if locations become busy. Please do not block main roads."

Other branches reopened across Shropshire and Powys today too.

As well as Newport, Donnington and the Wrekin Retail Park, the other restaurants to open were at:

  • The Forge Retail Park, Telford
  • Meole Brace, Shrewsbury
  • Battlefield Road, Shrewsbury;
  • Whitchurch
  • Chirk
  • Pool Road, Newtown.

Chirk town councillor Gareth Baines said that half an hour after opening the town's branches were well managed by McDonald's and traffic agencies, but encouraged any nearby residents with concerns to get in touch.

McDonald's said new measures had been brought in to keep employees and customers safe, including checking the temperature of employees at the start of their shifts. The reopenings followed a successful pilot in May.

A statement said: "McDonald’s and its franchisees are working closely with local authorities and the police, and may determine that it is necessary to close drive-thru lanes if queues cause disruption at busier sites or put employees or customers at risk.

"To help create a safe experience for everyone, McDonald’s has introduced a number of changes to their restaurants.

People queue for the drive through at McDonald's in Newport

"Social distancing has been introduced in the kitchens and service areas to help create a safe working environment for restaurant teams.

"Perspex screens at drive-thru windows and employees wearing protective equipment, as well as Perspex screens and floor markings in specific areas in the restaurant and kitchen.

"All McDonald’s employees will be asked to confirm they are fit and able to work, and contactless thermometers will be used to take employee temperatures on arrival at work for every shift."

Customers are encouraged to pay using contactless methods and restaurants have reduced hours, with smaller staff teams.

Rob Smith

By Rob Smith
Reporter

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star based at Ketley in Telford.

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