THE arrival of a new McDonald’s has been delayed until winter – but demolition work on site appears to be just weeks away.

The fast-food giant is opening a second restaurant and drive-thru in Christchurch.

It is set to be built at Christchurch Retail Park off Barrack Road on the site of the former Pizza Hut unit.

The existing premises, which has sat vacant since late November, will be flattened before the McDonald’s is built.

Fencing has blocked off access to the current structure and an excavator belonging to Dorset-based Three Cross Demolition has been placed on site.

In February, McDonald’s said it was expecting a summer opening with the creation of at least 65 jobs for “local people”.

The international chain has now given an update that the launch has been pushed back but more jobs will be created.

A McDonald’s spokesperson: “We are excited about getting on site and starting building works in Christchurch and look forward to opening in the winter.

“The new restaurant will bring significant investment to the local area as well as creating at least 120 full and part time jobs.”

Bournemouth Echo:

Tony Revell, director of Three Cross Demolition, told the Daily Echo said the firm was waiting for McDonald’s to finalise some planning matters. He expected the demolition to begin in around five weeks.

“It will take around three weeks on site once we get started,” Mr Revell said.

“We are just waiting for the final details to be sorted before we begin the demolition.”

The new restaurant would increase McDonald’s long-standing presence in Christchurch, with the drive-thru unit in Somerford Road being in place for decades.

The plan for Christchurch Retail Park was met with just shy of 100 objections from residents, along with ward councillor Vanessa Ricketts.

Bournemouth Echo:

Cllr Ricketts said she objected due to traffic and litter concerns, as well as the location near two schools.

The application, which was submitted by retail park owner St James Place Trust, was approved by BCP Council’s planning committee in September last year.

Stay up to date with all the latest community news across Dorset with our dedicated Facebook group. Click here to find out more and join.