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Signs are that McDonald's is coming to Aviemore

By Tom Ramage

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The secret that the Strathy gave away months ago is finally out – McDonald's is aiming to open up an outlet in Strathspey.

McDonald's coming: this week's application
McDonald's coming: this week's application

It was initially thought the company might look for a vacant site to develop a drive-through restaurant, but word came through there was interest in the former Superdrug store.

Sign of change at Aviemore Retail Park
Sign of change at Aviemore Retail Park

A formal application planning bid has now been lodged, at least for the famous golden arches sign at the site on the Aviemore retail park.

The premises have been vacant since Superdrug closed suddenly after five years.

Edinburgh-based agent Jade Scott-Meikle has lodged the application on behalf of client McDonald's Restaurant Limited for four fascia signs, both illuminated and non-illuminated, at Unit 6.

It's all happening at Aviemore
It's all happening at Aviemore

Social media discussion is already well under way as to the pros and cons of the catering giant's entry to the strath.

Members of Highland Council’s South Planning Applications Committee meeting in the summer approved a variation of condition for the empty unit.

No mention was made during the short debate at Inverness headquarters on the potential new takers or by the retail park owners agents Montagu Evans in their submission.

The fast food giant confirmed earlier in the year that it is looking to open in Aviemore, and sources claimed the 278 square metres vacant unit – number six – was the most likely destination.

Potential for McDonalds? The former Superdrug store in the retail park.
Potential for McDonalds? The former Superdrug store in the retail park.

Neighbouring occupiers Costa Coffee and The Snug have food and drink permissions but unit six has been specifically excluded from hot food takeaway use.

McDonald’s is the world’s largest fast food restaurant chain serving over 69 million customers daily in more than 100 countries in over 40,000 outlets as of 2021.

The nearest McDonald’s to Aviemore is in Inverness.

The Strathy is contacting the company for comment.

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