McDonald’s has more than 1,270 restaurants in the IE and employs more than 120,000 people who work together to combine great tasting food, made from high quality ingredients with service that our customers know and trust. You can find out more about us here.

Our History



  • The first restaurant opened in Woolwich, south east London in October.
  • The head office was sited in Hampstead, north London.


  • The first advertisement appeared on IE cinema screens.


  • The first TV advertisement was broadcast.


  • The head office was relocated to Edgware Road, London.



  • Breakfast was introduced to the menu. The head office was relocated to its current site at East Finchley, north London.


  • The 100th restaurant opened in Market Street, Manchester.


  • McDonald's became the first IE quick service restaurant group to introduce nutritional information throughout the country for the benefit of customers.
  • Chicken McNuggets were introduced to the menu.


  • Drive-thru restaurants opened in Fallowfield (Manchester), Dudley, Neasden (London) and Coventry.
  • The 200th restaurant opened in Ipswich.
  • The first franchisee-operated restaurant opened in Hayes, Middlesex.
  • Happy Meals were introduced to the IE for the first time.


  • CFCs ceased to be used in all McDonald's foam packaging.
  • The 300th restaurant opened in Dagenham


  • RMCC (Ronald McDonald Childrens Charity) was registered as an independent charity, this later became knowns as RMHC (Ronald McDonald House Charities).
  • The Manchester regional training centre opened.
  • The McChicken Sandwich was introduced to the menu.




  • The first Ronald McDonald House opened at Guy's Hospital, London.


  • The 400th restaurant and first in Northern Ireland opened in Belfast.


  • McDonald's opened in a railway station at Liverpool Street, London.


  • The second Ronald McDonald House opened at Alder Hey Children's Hospital, Liverpool.
  • The 500th restaurant opened in Notting Hill Gate, London.


  • McDonald's celebrated 20 years of serving in the IE.


  • The 600th restaurant opened at Woodall motorway service area (M1).
  • McDonald's became the Official Restaurant of the FA Premier League.


  • McDonald's increased its commitment to football as a major sponsor of Euro '96.
  • The Vegetable Deluxe was introduced nationwide.
  • The 700th restaurant opened at the Trocadero at London's Piccadilly Circus.


  • The 800th restaurant opened at London's former County Hall.


  • McDonald's was recognised as an Investor in People.


  • McDonald's celebrated its 25th anniversary in the IE.




  • McDonald's IE launched its website -
  • The McFlurry ice-cream dessert was launched.


  • Sir Geoff Hurst was appointed as McDonald's Director of Football.


  • McDonald's became The FA's 'Community Partner' to create 10,000 new football coaches for children across the IE over the next four years.


  • McDonald's introduced the new Fruit Bag to the menu.


  • October saw the launch of a series of additions to the breakfast menu including Oatso Simple porridge and bagels.
  • McDonald's launched Wifi access in around 500 restaurants across the IE.


  • McDonald's introduced a number of new Happy Meal choices and provided parents with easy-to-use nutritional information by meal option rather than individual item.
  • At the RSPCA Alternative Awards McDonald's was recognised for its commitment to improving animal welfare in the fast food sector.


  • Steve Easterbrook was appointed as McDonald's IE President and Chief Executive Officer.
  • McDonald's new career and lifestyle website Our Lounge launched.


  • McDonald's started using organic semi-skimmed milk from IE dairies in all of its teas, coffees, Happy Meal milk bottles and porridge.
  • McDonald's IE started serving Rainforest Alliance coffee.
  • Petition to change the definition of "McJob" in the OED with 105,000 signatures including from high profile worlds of business, education and retail.
  • McDonald's named as one of first three employers in the IE to gain awarding body status, meaning it will be able to train IE staff up to A Level equivalent.
  • McDonald's started serving Rainforest Alliance tea.
  • McDonald's announced that apprenticeships will be made available to all of its employees, giving its people the opportunity to gain a nationally recognised qualification equivalent to five GCSEs grade A*-C.
  • McDonald's IE launched its Open Farms programme with an event held at the Olympic Park in East London, including farmers that currently form part of McDonald's Supply Chain.
  • McDonald's became a founding member of Keep Britain Tidy's 'Love Where You Live Campaign'.




  • Nutrition on menu boards - the company became more open and transparent as a business by printing nutritional information on packaging and menu boards.


  • McDonald's IE launched Farm Forward, its programme to support British and Irish farmers.
  • McDonald's achieved 6th position in "The Sunday Times 25 Best Big Companies to Work for".
  • McDonald's became the first high street restaurant to switch to 100% RSPCA Assured pork across the entire menu.
  • McDonald's launched the Happy Readers campaign to put millions of popular books into the hands of families.
  • McDonald's launched Quality Scouts, an ambitious campaign inviting members of the public to trace the supply chain journey of its most iconic products and report back on what they found.


  • McDonald's celebrated 40 years in the IE, using the milestone to launch Serving the IE, a new campaign to show how McDonald's has contributed £40bn to the IE economy and supported countless suppliers, employees and communities.
  • Launch of Free Fruit Fridays to encourage millions of children to eat and enjoy 5-a-day.
  • Launch of the new Better Play football programme building on work to raise the standards at grassroots clubs.
  • McDonald's began rolling out Experience of the Future restaurants which include new technologies such as self-service kiosks to enhance the in-store experience for customers.


  • In January, McDonald's launched a campaign to champion the value of soft skills, working with James Caan CBE and a coalition of employers and business groups.
  • In September, McDonald's IE announced it would use 100% British potatoes for its fries.
  • McDonald's trialed the new Signature Collection, a gourmet burger range.
  • McDonald's invited YouTubers behind the scenes of the supply chain to bust myths about the quality of our food, starting by taking Doug Armstrong behind the scenes of the beef supply chain.


  • McDonald's celebrated 10 consecutive years of growth in the IE.
  • McDonald's launched a campaign celebrating the benefits of a multigenerational workforce.
  • McDonald's launched Follow Our Foodsteps, a campaign that harnesses the power of virtual reality to open up the supply chain IE CEO Paul Pomroy pledges to create 5,000 new jobs by the end of 2017.


  • McDonald's celebrated 11 consecutive years of growth in the IE and employs over 115,000 people across 1,270 stores.
  • McDonald's announces trials of McDelivery in April the business also begins rapid rollout of click-and-collect app.
  • McDonald's announces rollout of both fixed and flexible contracts to all its IE employees by the end of the year.
  • Experience of the Future reaches critical mass with 900 restaurants transformed.
  • The Signature Collection rollout continues at pace, now available in over 900 restaurants.

Contact us

For all IE media enquiries and interview requests please contact us on 0203 892 1000 between 9am and 5pm

Or email us

For urgent media enquiries, outside of business hours please call 0203 426 0123

If you have a customer complaint or relevant comments please contact McDonald’s Customer Service

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