McDonald's drops appeal over Kenton restaurant decision
Fast-food chain McDonald's has dropped its appeal against a decision to reject plans for a new restaurant in Newcastle.
Newcastle City Council refused planning permission to the development near Kenton School in September 2014.
McDonald's had launched an appeal but has now withdrawn it after the council changed its planning policy.
Hundreds opposed the restaurant saying it would encourage children from the school to eat unhealthily.
A McDonald's spokeswoman said the firm was made aware the authority had amended its policy to take into consideration the proximity of certain businesses to schools, meaning the plans no longer adhered to planning guidelines.
"We have withdrawn our appeal as a direct consequence. We are genuinely disappointed and frustrated by this development at such a late stage," she said.
'Kept on fighting'
The company claimed the new restaurant would have created about 70 jobs and made a "positive contribution" to the area.
Campaigners said they were delighted the plans were at an end.
Jocasta Williams told BBC Newcastle: "We always thought it was a really long shot, they are a multi-national company, we just had a group of committed people that were prepared to give up their own time and a small amount of money.
"We always doubted we could do it but we have, we kept on fighting."
Newcastle City Council welcomed McDonald's decision and said a Planning Inspection scheduled for Tuesday would not now go ahead.
A city council spokesman said: "Newcastle is a city which welcomes business and investment. We will always work constructively with big business to find solutions that work for them to bring jobs and growth.
"But we must also always strike the right balance to ensure that investments are in the best interests of our local residents."