THE head teachers of schools near the proposed new McDonald's in York have said they have "massive" concerns over the development.

McDonald's submitted a planning application to City of York Council on April 3 to take over the former Iceland site in Fulford Road.

The 7,700 square foot site would be home to a new fast food restaurant open seven days a week, from 7am-11pm.

However, the application has sparked controversy, with local residents and councillors joining the objections.

Now, the head teachers of two nearby schools have also voiced their concerns.

York Press: Scaffolding has appeared at the proposed locationScaffolding has appeared at the proposed location (Image: Newsquest)

Head of York Steiner School, Ruth Crabtree, and head of Danesgate School, Chris Nichols, spoke to The Press about the prospect of a McDonald's being built nearby.

The pair echoed the points already raised by objectors, including the potential for increased congestion in Fulford Road, possible noise and smell pollution, and litter.

Mr Nichols, head of Danesgate, said: "Our students here are highly vulnerable, 75 per cent of them are neuro-diverse or have special learning requirements."

He added that the vulnerability of some of his students increased the potential for them being embroiled in "harmful" interactions, if a new McDonald's were to open. 

York Press: Chris Nichols, Head of Danesgate SchoolChris Nichols, Head of Danesgate School (Image: Newsquest)

"It's a really big issue for both of our school populations," he added, referring to his school and Steiner School.

Ms Crabtree, of Steiner School, said: "Our big ethos is environmental sustainability, we grow a lot of crops here and encourage the kids to be involved in that process.

"Welcoming in a fast food place around the corner is just the wrong message to them."

Both schools in Fulford Cross are less than 400 metres from the proposed site of the new fast-food restaurant.

Mr Nichols said: "Traffic's bad enough around here.

"Our students with additional needs need to be driven right to the school, being sat in traffic adds to the stress and does affect the running of our school day."

York Press: Ruth Crabtree, Head of York Steiner SchoolRuth Crabtree, Head of York Steiner School (Image: Supplied)

Both head teachers accepted that a new McDonald's would bring growth to the area, creating jobs. But they felt there was no need for it to be in the proposed location.

"The counter arguments far outweigh the benefits," Mr Nichols said.

Ms Crabtree added: "The council needs to think about the community, it'll make things worse not better.

"The council have a duty to put the community before profit."

In response to the objections, a McDonald's spokesperson told The Press: "We remain excited about the opportunity to open a new restaurant in York and will continue to work with local stakeholders and the community to address any concerns."

The planning application will now go to a City of York Council committee. A date for the meeting has not yet been set.