Youth arrested following “firearm” incident at McDonald’s in Bradley Stoke

Photo of a two-storey McDonald's restaurant with drive-through.
Archive image: McDonald’s restaurant and drive-through at the Willow Brook Centre, Bradley Stoke (December 2022).

Police have made an arrest following an incident at the McDonald’s restaurant in Bradley Stoke in which a youth was seen with an object that “looked like a handgun”, according to one eye witness.

In response to an enquiry from the Journal, a spokesperson for Avon and Somerset Police said:

“Officers were called to McDonald’s in Bradley Stoke at about 5.40pm on Friday 24th February 2023 amid reports of a male in possession of a firearm tucked into his waistband.”

“Police attended and after examining CCTV footage a 16-year-old was arrested two days later. He has since been released on conditional bail.”

Kitchen & Laundry Appliance Care, Bradley Stoke, Bristol.

According to the eye witness, the police response consisted of four officers, arriving in two unmarked vehicles.

The police spokesperson added:

“No weapon has been recovered at this stage but from the description provided we understand it to have been an imitation firearm. There were no reported injuries.”

“Anyone with information that could help our ongoing enquiries is asked to call 101 and quote reference number 5223045485.”


Incident statistics

Asked how many incidents they had responded to at the Bradley Stoke McDonald’s restaurant in the first two months of 2023, the police spokesperson said they were unable to provide data for this specific store. However, more generally, they disclosed that the force had received 13 calls relating to incidents at the Willow Brook shopping centre over the two-month period (including the above incident at McDonald’s). One was an abandoned 999 call but other matters include assault, anti-social behaviour and concern for welfare.

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Stakeholders’ group

The Bradley Stoke McDonald’s restaurant and drive-through was granted a late night refreshment licence a few days ahead of its opening in September 2022. This licence allows the store to open between the hours of 11pm and 5am. However, the operator is yet to take advantage of the licence as the current hours of opening are 6am to 11pm (extended from 6am to 10pm prior to December 2022).

On announcing its decision on the licence application, the chair of the Licensing Sub-Committee at South Gloucestershire Council (SGC) “encouraged” McDonald’s to “set up a liaison [or stakeholders’] group with the town council and local representatives to ensure a clear line of communication should any issues arise”.

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A meeting of Bradley Stoke Town Council’s Planning & Environment Committee on 8th March 2023 was informed that a “very productive” stakeholders’ meeting had been held, involving town council officers, the Bradley Stoke Police Beat Team and representatives from the Willow Brook Centre, Bradley Stoke Community School, McDonald’s Restaurant, SGC’s Community Safety Team and Bradley Stoke Leisure Centre.

The meeting was said to have been a “successful networking opportunity” and councillors were informed that “numerous actions had been taken away by different stakeholders”.

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