A Carlisle councillor has backed calls for more powers to stop fast food applications, to protect the health of our children.

Elizabeth Mallinson, who represents the Stanwix Urban ward on the city and county councils, has condemned plans for a new KFC drive-thru on Kingstown Road.

“As a city, we are trying to promote healthy living but this is yet another fast food outlet when there are already so many close by,” she explained.

“We do not have any statutory powers. It’s very difficult because you can only refuse something on planning law.

“We’ve got an obesity epidemic that is linked to type 2 diabetes, but we do not have any statutory route to stop it. I’m really concerned about that. Year on year our primary school children are getting more overweight, but there’s nothing we can do.

“I do not believe in the nanny state, but I do think the time has come where we need to make decisions for the long term future of our children.”

Mrs Mallinson said the link to obesity needs to be taken up by both public health chiefs locally, and at a national level.

However she said there are also many other concerns about the KFC plan that warrant refusal - including traffic congestion, litter and antisocial behaviour.

“There’s a tremendous amount of opposition. I don’t think this is a case of ‘nimbyism’. People are genuinely concerned. This is a residential area. I am worried about the litter and antisocial behaviour other places like this generate,” she added.