Pub chef fined after mouse droppings found in kitchen

The New Inn pub Silver Street, Abthorpe.
The New Inn pub Silver Street, Abthorpe.

A south Northants chef has been ordered to pay more than £5,000 after accepting he failed to keep his kitchen clean and free of pests.

On Friday, June 21, Stephen Casemore, 45, of The New Inn, Abthorpe was fined and ordered to pay costs along with a victim surcharge after pleading guilty to offences of failing to have adequate procedures to control pests, and failing to keep the premises clean.

Northampton Magistrates heard that in February last year South Northants Council food safety officers carried out a routine inspection and found mouse droppings on surfaces used to prepare food, on shelves and in food containers.

Droppings were also found in cooking equipment such as baking trays, cling film dispensers and on the kitchen floor. In addition officers noted a poor standard of hygiene.

After in the inspection Casemore voluntarily closed the kitchen for one week and hired a pest control company to eradicate the mouse infestation. Follow-up visits confirmed improved hygiene standards are being maintained and the premises currently has a good food hygiene rating.

Councillor Dermot Bambridge, SNC’s portfolio holder for environment and waste management said the fine could easily have been avoided but added: “By preparing and serving food during a mouse infestation, Casemore was putting the health and safety of his customers at risk. The council takes any threat to public health incredibly seriously and, as demonstrated by this case, will enforce legal action if necessary.”

Casemore was fined £2,000, ordered to pay £3,602.22 costs and a £15 victim surcharge