BERE Ferrers Parish Council has agreed to a request for a pizza delivery van to offer a service in the village each month.
Other possible sites owned by the council, including the car park outside Bere Alston Parish Hall were rejected by councillors.
They voted five votes in favour to two against to allow the van to pitch up on a trial basis at the car park at The Down. There were also concerns that the service would affect trade for the one takeaway food business in the village, which is near the car park by the parish hall.
However, after hearing that the company had a policy of encouraging people to ring in their orders in advance – with the idea of avoiding customers hanging around – councillors decided to allow a trial on one night a week, likely to be a Friday night.
Cllr Dave Pengelly urged his fellow councillors to support the proposal, saying: ‘I don’t think there have been any objections. There have been messages of support from 100 people on Facebook. It has been on the agenda for two weeks and we have had no objections and I’m still in favour of it for a trial period.’
Other sites in the parish suggested were Pilgrim Drive, which would be on the highway rather than on council land, although Cllr Maycock said this was ‘chocka’ of an evening.
Another idea of using the school car park had been dropped. Cllr Maycock said: ‘I think the parish hall car park, allowing that on a Friday night could only cause problems for the parish council.’ Regarding the car park at The Down, he raised concerns about litter, saying: ‘I think we need to tread very carefully on this site and I think if we do agree to something we should do it on a trial basis and see how it goes.’
Cllr Pengelly said that it would be up to the takeaway service themselves to show they could operate without causing a litter problem. ‘If they can’t pick the litter up after themselves, then that is their problem.’
Cllr Maycock said: ‘It isn’t the pizza delivery van itself, it is the customers leaving pizza boxes and people having parties up there, leaving cans and boxes. Where are they going to go? I can’t see it working.’
However, Cllr Pengelly responded: ‘They have a booking system and you ring up in advance. It operates out of Gunnislake and Calstock and it is very successful. I propose we allow it for a three month period every three weeks to a month. We have to make it clear that if it is too much trouble we will refuse it, but we will give it a go.’
Councillors agreed, on the proviso that people avoid nights when others are using the car park, such as football training nights.