A FAMOUS Fylde pub has been hit with a hefty fine after falling foul of food hygiene rules.
Lee Ellis, the manager of the Windmill Tavern in Clifton, near Kirkham, admitted 13 charges relating to food hygiene and health and safety when he appeared before Blackpool magistrates.
Town hall licensing chiefs raided the premises on Clifton Lane in October 2010 and discovered a worrying catalogue of problems including food not fit for consumption and out-of-date items as well as food contamination risks which may have led to potentially harmful bacteria being bred.
Officers also found evidence of poor stock control and inadequate cleaning, broken electrical sockets and a fridge with an unhinged door. There were also insufficient arrangements for staff to wash their hands when preparing or dealing with food.
The premises was hit with a notice to improve but subsequent visits by officers found that – although efforts had been made – the venue was still not up to scratch.
Mike Walker, Fylde Council’s head of public protection, described the situation at the Windmill Tavern as an “extreme case”.
He said: “Officers inspect food premises on a regular basis.
“On the whole, any problems they find can be dealt with on an informal basis.
“It is the health of the public that concerns us and extreme cases such as this require a more formal approach – which is what we have done.”
He added that the poor standards would be reflected in the establishment’s next score in the recently introduced National Food Hygiene Rating System.
Coun Tommy Threlfall, cabinet member for the environment, told The Gazette: “We are sad to see any business taken to court but the council has a duty to protect the health of the public and staff.
“The council will not hesitate to take legal action against businesses that put the public at risk by failing to take their responsibilities seriously.”
Ellis was fined £2,600 with £670 costs after pleading guilty to 13 charges relating to food hygiene and health and safety at Blackpool Magistrates Court.