Tim Hortons attracts more complaints after clash with parents at nearby school

A Motherwell councillor says problems are continuing in relation to a new drive through takeaway in a fresh row - over fines that restaurant staff would have NO authority to implement.

Wednesday, 17th March 2021, 10:34 am
Updated Wednesday, 17th March 2021, 10:46 am

Tim Hortons opened its outlet on Windmillhill Street in December 2020, amidst controversy over delays to alterations to the surrounding roads layout, but now Motherwell South East and Ravenscraig Councillor Agnes Magowan says the situation has become worse as parents take their children to nearby Knowetop Primary School.

And now the Canadian chain stands accused of being a bad neighbour -again - after it was also discovered that an unauthorised email had been sent to the school in regard to the fines.

The parent said: “Some parents to try and alleviate the congestion have been parking in the Tim Horton car park for 10-20minutes to pick up their children safely.


“Instead of welcoming this for the safety of the youngsters Tim Hortons have sent an email to Knowetop asking for parents to be informed that they will be fined if they park in this car park!


“I would have expected that for goodwill and the non completion of the road widening, which is part of the problem, that Tim Hortons would allow this minor inconvenience.”


With the school now fully open as from Monday, Councillor Magowan believes the situation will only get worse.


A parent from the school added: “I find it a disgrace that the management team in Tim Hortons are putting their business and customer service above the safety of primary children who are trying to get to and from school safely.
“I assume the managers/staff are not from this area and have no idea what the parking is like during drop of and pick up times. It has been an issue for a number of years now with parents and carers parking directly across from the school or on the yellow lines along Knowetop Avenue.


“This is a very dangerous situation that is, quite frankly, an accident waiting to happen, hence the reason there were so many objections to the restaurant being built on this spot in the first place.
“However the build was put through and managed to open its doors despite the objections and also dismissing requests not to open until the road had been widened sufficiently to allow for the extra traffic that would now be travelling along Knowetop Avenue”


Councillor  Magowan is calling for increased cooperation between Tim Hortons and the local community, as well as for more parents to make use of alternative modes of travel.


A spokesperson for Tim Hortons UK and Ireland said there had been miscommunication and parents would face no risk of fine while using their car park.
The spokesperson explained: “I can firstly confirm that Tim Hortons is committed to supporting the local community in Motherwell. We understand that there are pressures on the nearby roads adjacent to our restaurant and the school at peak hours of school opening and closing time.


“We are happy to allow, where possible, parents to use our car parking spaces to assist. I can categorically tell you that there is no risk of fines, as this is certainly not a company policy.


“Upon investigation, we have found that a message was provided to the local Head Teacher at Knowetop Primary from one of our shift managers. This message, and the contents within it, was not authorised by our senior management team in Scotland and we will be ensuring that all team members are clear on our company policy and expectations, with any required training also being implemented.


“We can only apologise that this was issued in the first place by a team member and reassure parents and the wider community that it does not reflect any company policies, or our values.


“We have also spoken again to the Head Teacher to ensure that these messages are relayed to parents and we look forward to continuing to work with the school and the community to offer our support, wherever possible.