RESIDENTS are outraged as a fast food advert is placed along a Southampton road which has hundreds of school children walking down it every day.

The McDonald's advert, which is on a telephone box, is on Hiltingbury Road, Chandler's Ford, which is a walking route for multiple schools including Thornden School.

Residents of the area are worried that this message of eating fast food will encourage youngsters to eat junk food.

Councillor for Valley Park, Alan Dowden, said: "This is blatant targeting of our young people, to place an advertisement within 400 metres of a secondary school.

"Fast food, of this type, reduce the quality of diet and provide unhealthy choices especially among children and adolescents, raising their risk of obesity.

"Obesity in childhood is linked to long term health conditions in adulthood.

"We need to reduce the promotion of, and the ease of access to, these products for the sake of the nation’s health."

One concerned resident and mum, Kathryn Woods-Townsend said: "The advert was on a telephone box probably within 400m of Thornden School which means that hundreds of children and young people in our area are exposed to the adverts on a daily basis.

"This goes against public health messages and promotes junk food uptake among a group of the population we should be trying to nurture and protect.

"Obviously, with the opening of the McDonald's in the ASDA at Chandler’s Ford, they are trying to advertise to a local community, but I feel there should be some protection for the school students."

McDonald's replied to the comments and defended their advertising policy.

A McDonald's spokesperson said: "We restrict our advertising to avoid being within 200m of schools, which is double the industry standard. This particular advert adheres to our stringent guidelines."

This comes as a new McDonald's opened inside ASDA in Chandler's Ford last month.

Councillor for Chandler's Ford, Alan Broadhurst, said: "If we are to have more take away food outlets then I would rather see ones which would promote healthy eating.

"Chandler's Ford already has a good number and variety of food outlets."