The owner of a Lichfield business is calling for steps to be taken to prevent food delivery drivers and their vehicles congregating on streets in the city centre.

Complaints have been made about groups of workers waiting on Conduit Street outside the McDonald’s branch for orders to come in.

The owner of a nearby business, who did not wish to be named, told Lichfield Live they were disrupting trade and bringing their cars through a restricted pedestrianised area.

“We are annoyed with the drivers arguing and parking in the street outside of McDonald’s and by the side of us the telephone boxes on Market Square.

“They are dragging the city down.

“We get letters from the council if we park by our shop and tickets from wardens if we park, yet these drivers are allowed to?

“It’s not fair and it’s not right.

Lichfield business owner

Cllr David Williams, cabinet member for highways and transport at Staffordshire County Council, said wardens would take action where vehicles were found to be parked illegally in the city centre

“Civil parking enforcement is an important service that helps deter drivers from parking illegally, keeps our streets and roads safe and on the move and is essential for our local economies.

“Lichfield city centre has a range of parking options including a number of short stay parking and on-street spaces.

“Our traffic wardens do patrol on Conduit Street and Market Street on a daily basis and will issue parking tickets to anyone observed parking illegally.

“We would always ask people to park responsibly and to be considerate to other road users and pedestrians. This helps keep our roads safe for everyone.”

Cllr David Williams, Staffordshire County Council

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  1. Get the police down there to move them on check vehicle detail, I did a DVLA check on one the other day and it didn’t have a current MOT, the traffic warden spoke to him about parking and he just ignored her, and they all congregated around her to intimidate her. Car already had a ticket on it too

  2. I am sure there is a solution to this which does not cause suffering for anyone. I have spoken with one of our traffic wardens – who are employed by Stoke across the county – I was concerned that she might meet hostility. She said the guys are trying to do a job of work and she asks them to move and had given them tickets on occasion. They know they are breaking the rules, but need to be close to Macdonalds. Perhaps the solution would be to remove the double yellow lines all round and replace with a permit only area. I know from previous queries that this area is not an adopted road so is tough to police. [I complained about speeding ten years back]. Macdonalds ought to pay for the permits and their admin.

  3. Why have they taken away these spaces from the disabled driving them away from the city even more, only to allow just eat / Uber drivers there?
    Why are disabled people not Ok and this kind of driver OK?

    Why yet again are the disabled second class citizens in Lichfield?

  4. Completely empty rhetoric from Lichfield Council as usual. The situation is out of control at the back of Cross Keys too and as the business owner states in the article, the drivers have now started parking in the pedestrianised area. Walking through the centre on Wednesday I counted seven cars parked around the front of McDonalds with absolutly no sign of a parking warden or PCSO’s. This situation was allowed to begin under lockdown and will only continue to get worse unless proper action is taken.

  5. Oh my goodness! What a fuss about nothing! If people want to have their food delivered, I guess this is going to happen. How about suggesting solutions instead of insinuating criminal behaviour? There’s no need for that. I’m proud of Lichfield as a diverse, friendly, and welcoming place. The person complaining is letting the rest of us down!

  6. What a load of codswallop from Cllr Williams about parking enforcement wardens taking action on vehicles parked illegally on Market Street. I would be interested to see the data backing up this bold statement Cllr Williams, lets make it simple with the number of parking fines on Market Street in maybe the past 6 months?. Maybe walk down with a warden on Monday so he/she can ticket the two or three cars that will be parked there. It’s not just intermittant days, I’ve seen the illegal parking every time I walk into town.

    They certainly ticket cars, on the local carparks, who have overstayed their alloted time, and I see that almost daily. However I have never seen one inkling of interest from a warden when they walk past cars parked on Market Street. The once when I spoke with a parking enforcement officer who had just walked past 4 cars parked on market street, I was told she “was too busy”.

    I will admit the parking of the delivery drivers outside McDonalds is ‘spectacular’ and I was impressed how the two large cars managed to fit between the three planters that were placed there to prevent parking. Not to mention the third car parked infront of the skip by the market traders toilets. But I suppose the cars belonged to some of the 12 to 15 delivery drivers talking very loudly (shouting).

    Before anyone suggests it, I’m not a bitter ticketed victim of a parking enforcement warden and always park legally.

    Issuing a few parking tickets will soon get the message across. Same as a few people being fined cycling on the roads the wrong way down Bore Street and Market Street would soon ease the issue.

    But issues like these are ‘easy wins’ for the County Council at a time when faith in both the County and City Councils seems to be very poor.

  7. I’ve been to collect food several times from McDonalds in town and, there’s always a group of men outside, hanging around. As a female it’s quite intimidating to be gawp at for just walking into a fast food restaurant. I don’t actually go there anymore, for this very reason. McDonalds should do something about it, as it’s letting the city look awful. Has anyone seen the planters outside McDonald’s where the drives congregate??? Full of cigarette butts and litter. They have zero respect.

  8. I’ve seen the aforementioned congregation, the numbers are about no more then six, they stand by the planters and cause as far as I can see no issues to anyone, not wishing to raise the race card but may be their ethinity be a issue, everyone has a right to earn a crust and I fail to see how their presence effects footfall in the local shops

  9. I find it farcical that planters were put in various places in town for “social distancing” and blue badge holders lost their parking places. Now there appear to be lots of people and cars parked so no social distancing and I know several blue badge holders who shop elsewhere where they feel welcome

  10. @Jude: I have witnessed illegal changing of number plates whilst parked behind MacDonald’s, excessive speeding, loud and anti social music playing on their car stereos, intimidating behaviour by them toward authority, illegal parking behind MacDonald’s and infront if it (including tonight, 14th, there being 8 cars in total), rubbish left outside MacDonald’s as they wait for food deliveries, both on the pavement, road and in the planter pots, aggressive driving behind me whilst not observing the 10 mph speed limit recently applied to Cross Keys (approaching the rear of Macdonald’s), out of date MOT and even no insurance. This all constitutes grave violations and apparently nothing is done. My £250 car permit falls out of sight into my dashboard for 2 days and I’m immediately fined £100. Where is the policing? I feel so sorry for the guys in Scott Place and The Old Picture House who have to tolerate this anti social behaviour without anything being done whatsoever. Let’s all write to Macdonald’s and complain.

  11. I don’t know if you realise that these people are not local and they are just coming to Lichfield to work and if they don’t park there they will just stop coming to Lichfield because it will be impossible for them to do what they do. Who is going to deliver your food then? Imagine Lichfield without food delivery, it will be like in the 20th century, no?

  12. Lets face it- McDonalds should never have been allowed to move in there. It has always been an eyesore on the Market Square, but that’s another story……

  13. Unless McDonald’s have covered those drivers car insurance, enabling them to deliver their food legally, then they will almost certainly be operating illegally. A standard car policy covering you for social domestic and pleasure does NOT cover a driver for delivering hot food.

    So if, in the event of delivering food a driver is involved in an accident, then it can become very serious very quickly for both the driver and the 3rd party involved.

    For this they need Business Insurance and its not cheap. Why? Because insurers know that people rushing round delivering food, often in rush hour traffic are increasing greatly their chances of being involved in an accident.

    All ot needs is for the police to check drivers insurance policies. If their policy is insufficient they can be fined and deducted points from their licence as driving without insurance is a serious matter. Do you fancy being run into by someone who isn’t adequately insured?

    I also think the likes of McDonald’s etc should have a moral and legal obligation to provide insurance cover for the drivers they are using to deliver their food. They could purchase insurance cover in such quantities that it would cost them very little and all would be legally covered.

  14. They intimidate me when all.there I understand they have a job and are trying to earn money as for parking thewardens might be ticketing them but when I go down early they know the wardens are not around so abuse the system

  15. Angela, totally understand you. I’ve stopped going to McDonald’s altogether and it’s because all the the delivery drivers. I even tried to order food on the app, but then you still have to be at least few doors down to check in and end up waiting. I think there’s a bigger problem with those delivery drivers parking illegally and congregating. It’s their attitude! Occasionally I go to Ventura’s McDonald’s. There’s plenty of space and yet they congregate and shout in front of collection point inside the restaurant. They’d form a wall and me being rather petite I couldn’t get through them to get my order. They wouldn’t hear my “excuse me” until I pulled myself together and push with my elbows shouting “excuse me” literally… It’s no good at any McDonald’s. After all I’m not being paid to stand around and chat. I’ve always wandered how they manage to deliver their orders warm??? In my opinion it’s not worth the hassle and better for my health and my pocket I suppose. I’ll just add, any of the food delivery companies don’t cover the area I live in, so I do have to go and collect myself.

  16. What idiots have cold McDonald’s delivered anyway? The stuff is cold more than not when it’s served over the counter normally! .. another fad just waiting to kick off.

  17. Missing the point entirely yes the car parking is a huge issue parking on double yellow lines. But it’s its the large volume of men who are loud and are shouting that will affect business in the whole area. And there are way more than 6 which has been commented. At times it’s packed.
    When businesses start closing up and moving out of lichfield maybe something will be done, it will be too late but there you go.
    IT is intimidating to women, and I have seen them making comments I know people who already avoid the area.
    Act now or wait until its too late.

  18. The real story here is that we, as a community, are happy to exploit young men from disadvantaged and marginalised communities to meet the needs of our own greed and idleness. Many of the men come from regions of desperate hardship, such as the Roma communities of Bulgaria and Romania, and the UK gives them the opportunity to earn, legally, what for them is an essential income. What they take home in terms of payment for what is a difficult, insecure and isolated job is never anything above the minimum wage. This situation is replicated throughout every town and city, not just in the UK, but the entire Western world. Large takeaway retailers are doing nothing wrong by offering this kind of work, although there are clear issues concerning social responsibility towards the wider environment. The real story is that we, as a community, are willing to exploit vunerable young men in order to enjoy delicious takeaway food in the comfort of our own homes.

  19. I’d personally say there is alot more dragging Lichfield down than that issue alot more issues

  20. I always see anti social behaviour outside that McDonald’s too. In fact I’ve been surprised recently by the amount of yobbish behaviour when walking around Lichfield including vulgar graffiti. Just one more example of the place going down the drain. By the time all this awful house building has happened it will just be another Burton with an old cathedral.

  21. Problem is they don’t just deliver for McD’s the same bunch deliver for Subway & several other food outlets in town. They just happen to congregate outside McD’s making a complete nuisance of themselves blocking the pavement & road. At times, especially on market days when it’s busy you can barely move. It really is time Lichfield council did more to stop this happening.

  22. The large groups of men surrounding McDonald’s is dragging Lichfield down. The noise,the empty drinks cans, the arguments. It really needs to be put a stop too. We are a tourist destination. You carnt drive through town as they are all in the road. If it’s ok for them to park why carnt us disabled park in town again. Good for one good for another. I give where McDonald’s is a wide birth now. Surly it’s stopping the shops footfall and coursing loss of earnings for them. The Shopping area is just starting to pick up again with the shops filling up. I feel these delivery drivers need to be banned from the town and moved on to the out of town McDonald’s. Thought loytering in large groups was illegal in town.

  23. The local owners/franchisee’s of Mc D will be concerned about this & act accordingly – Hopefully.

  24. Absolutely disgusting
    Walked past with my daughter to go to the Halifax
    One spat as we walked by
    While another was swearing at the top of his voice on loud speaker in front not only my daughter but children outside McDonald’s
    Found myself taking a different route to avoid them
    That shouldn’t have to be the case !!!!

  25. I reported 1 year ago no one listened they are rassist and intimidating time to stop this it has ruined tourists visiting
    Lichfield Romanian registered cars parked inside flower box
    And loitering men.

  26. In the 80s & 90s I remember groups of ‘young men’ hanging round outside MacDonalds and as a schoolgirl I found it intimidating.
    My Nan lived in Cross Keys and regularly moaned about kids throwing their ‘Macs wrappers’ on the lawn.
    We’ll not much has changed has it?
    Except these particular people are there on behalf of MacDonalds who’ve changed their business model to accommodate modern habits of ordering on apps. I doubt these drivers get much money and are not employees.
    But that is no excuse for intimidating passers by or other negative behaviours.
    I recommend MacDonalds asks them to wait in their staff room until an order comes in. They should smoke round the back of the restaurant where other employees go. They should either have permits and park in official spaces which may well be a walk away, or use mopeds instead and park round the back.
    I can detect a bit of typical latent Lichfield racism in some of the replies but this is not a new phenomenon and is not about race.
    Responsibility with MacDonalds first and foremost and if they as a global corporate don’t like it then they should open a second outlet on an out of town site and use that for Lichfield app deliveries.

  27. I saw them and found it quite intimating …. Shouting in a foreign language to each other and heckling females… I

  28. Trina, I’d imagine Spanish people feel exactly the same about belligerent drunk Brits. Would you feel better if they were shouting in English?

  29. Can’t see the problem myself. Go into B’ham any day of the week and see queues of people outside Greggs and other take away outlets. Some people are not happy until they find something to moan about

  30. @Jen: A sensible and balanced comment with some very interesting suggestions. I hope someone from McDonalds sees it and takes note.

  31. @Jen. Really good comments thank you. I hope someone takes notice. I really want Lichfield to continue to be a great place for everyone to work and live and to be able to bring up our families in a friendly and safe environment.

  32. Who are we to think we can change other people? These are people legitimately working, probably self employed or on zero hours contracts. They are there because people are too lazy to fetch their own burgers and chips. It is improbable they are directly employed by McDonald’s.
    Smoking outside is legal, so is commercial drop off and pick up. This is no different in all market towns. So Lichfield is changing? If only this was the only problem it has!

  33. Philip, nobody is trying to change people.
    I agree with all of your first paragraph.
    Regarding change though, the business model has changed and imo it’s the corporate’s responsibility to bring in that change with the least amount of annoyance to passers by.
    I really think my suggestions would go a long way in making the drivers feel more included with the business and would benefit the whole community.
    Regarding smoking being legal outside, of course it is, but as an employee you have to smoke in designated areas for a small amount of time.
    I made some suggestions because this is obviously causing issues for some people and removing those concerns is surely beneficial to the whole community, including giving the drivers some respect as well?

  34. @Jen… They are probably employed by Uber Eats or Just Eat. I doubt McDonald’s has any jurisdiction over what they do in a public place. It is also likely they are doing deliveries for other outlets.
    A waiting area with facilities, possibly sponsored by all services and suppliers, could be offered by the council.
    Perhaps through their business scheme. In a discreet area this might meet all eventualities. The only caveat being that the delivery people do not have to contribute to this from their meagre incomes.

  35. @Jen …can you explain what you mean by “typical Lichfield latent racism”? In what way does it typify Lichfield, and can you give a few examples of racism in Lichfield? Thanks.

  36. @Jen : You say give the drivers some respect , perhaps if they showed a bit of respect in first place we wouldn’t be having these conversations now. I lived in lichfield all my life and I want it a nice place to live.

  37. @Philip, maybe the Lichfield Chambers of commerce could brainstorm with all city centre businesses who take app orders and come up with useful ideas, I think your idea could work.
    Question, why are no other businesses with just eat/ Uber etc, not having the same problem? Why only MacDonalds? I don’t get that?
    @Fact checker, it’s all in the comments above. Let me say this, outwardly Lichfield is pleasant and welcoming. That’s why I said latent, I don’t actually think people realise what I would call unconscious bias.
    @Belleview, so do I and my entire contribution shows that. Perhaps don’t just pick one sentence and make a point about that. Everyone should show respect and it’s earned. By treating delivery drivers in a more professional way would go some way, I blame zero hours culture for creating this mess in the first place, but there’s no going back. So, businesses using them have responsibilities to the wider public and community.

  38. Lichfield certainly is racist…
    The fact that people are complaining on here that “people are arguing in a different language”. Sounded like the main point to take from that was that they were doing it in a “different language”, rather than the “arguing” part.

    Or the fact that people assume that are foreign-born people or non-White people have to live out of town. Let me assure you there are definitely minorities living in Lichfield.

    Don’t get me started on the mp…

    What makes me sad is if you ever see minorities walking down the high street, usually Asian, the amount of angry stares they receive is actually appalling. While it might only be a minority of people who do it, I’m sure it is enough to make Lichfield feel like a vary scary place to be in you’re not white.

  39. @Dan… We don’t all have to think the same. There is a plaque in the market square to someone burned to death for not believing in God. Would you want the same for all dissidents? You should also consider that this is not a black and white issue. Many different races have an antipathy to each other. I would be pleased if multiculturalism worked, and I know that in some respects it does, but racism is not one sided as you might find in many areas of large cities.

  40. Dan, no-one has mentioned race. They refer to a different language being used. It’s quite possibly a touch of xenophobia but that’s a different thing. Is it fair to say “Lichfield is certainly racist” based on a comment on a forum? That’s quite a stretch to use against a whole town, when there’s not even any evidence that the person making the comment even lives in Lichfield.

    As for “angry stares”, this is entirely your interpretation of someone’s behaviour. Human instinct is to be drawn towards anything and anyone out of the norm (which in this case is mainly white Europeans). That doesn’t make a fraction of a second’s glance angry or racist.

    Racism is repugnant but let’s not make out Lichfield is some kind of no-go area for black and Asian people.

  41. @Philip: re:”There is a plaque in the market square to someone burned to death for not believing in God. Would you want the same for all dissidents?”

    Where exactly did Dan suggest he wanted racists burned at the stake, Philip? I can’t see anything in what he said that suggests any such thing.

  42. @factchecker In my book, if you’ve admitted to Lichfield having a “touch of xenophobia”, that is the same as having a “touch of racism”. It is the same as people saying that “Islamophobia is not racism”, it is just an excuse to get away with acting how you want. Racism isn’t all about skin colour. Shouting abuse at, for example, Bulgarians would count as Racially Aggravated Assult under UK law, and vice versa for instance some Asian people have a white skin complexion. So it is not quite as black-and-white as some people believe. Furthermore, if the government can think about making staring at people on a train, a sexual offence, how is staring at people on the street for “xenophobic” reasons any different? We are not stuck in the ’50s anymore. I’m not saying it is literally everyone in the town, but if enough people are doing it, then from the minorities’ point of view, it would have the same effect either way. Also, your point on whether I actually live in Lichfield, unless you sent over your council tax letter (which you can’t do on this forum anyway), you can’t prove that you live in Lichfield either, so it’s a bit of a throwaway statement from you.

    @Philip No idea why you mentioned burning people, seems a bit random, and you trying to sidestep the issue.

    Overall, I’m not condemning everyone, or trying to get anyone punished, but at the very least more people need to get better educated, whether that is at school age, or even just in the community. Differences in people, whether that is race, skin colour, religion, disability, sexual orientation etc are part of what makes this country what is, and why it is, on the whole, a good place to live.

  43. @Fact checker: “They refer to a different language being used. It’s quite possibly a touch of xenophobia but that’s a different thing.”

    Speaking a different language can lead to someone being subjected to discrimination and violence. Language is part of someone’s identity and hatred of someone’s use of a foreign language is part and parcel of xenophobic hate. Negative comments about someone speaking a different language reflect racist attitudes and should not be dismissed as somehow minor.

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