Dozens of Blackpool hotels, restaurants and take-aways continue to fail to conform to basic food hygiene standards.
Figures from the Food Standards Agency reveal that six establishments in the resort have a zero star rating - meaning urgent improvement is necessary.
HERE ARE THE RATINGS:
Dozens more places serving food are rated with just one star, a warning that major improvement is needed.
The zero star rated properties are: the Dolphin Hotel in Central Drive, Eating Inn on the Promenade, the Edwardian Hotel on the Promenade, Lucky Star Chinese Takeaway in Park Road, Shalimar Gardens in Talbot Road and Spiceland in Central Drive.
Several of those premises have already been prosecuted by Blackpool Council over their hygiene standards.
But not all of those handed the worst possible rating agree with their treatment.
Ben Shorrock is boss at the Eating Inn.
He is due in court this week over his zero-star rated restaurant, which had previously been given good marks by inspectors.
He said: “We have gone from a four to a zero.
“How can that happen?
“It was just down to unfortunate timing of the inspection.
“It’s one snapshot on one night and all we can do it ask to be inspected again.
“I believe the inspectors have been very heavy handed.
“I’ve seen all the horror stories, I agree that some places are a disgrace.
“But that’s not us.”
The Gazette attempted to contact all other zero star rated premises without success.
Among those premises given just one star by inspectors are the popular Number Four pub and the Deansgate Kitchen.
Some premises on the list, including the Collingwood Seafront Hotel and New Oceans Hotel, said food was no longer being served.
Others were less than happy with their rating.
The Peppermill in Birley Street is hoping for a swift change in rating having dropped from a four star status to one star.
Joanna Fitzpatrick, who runs the cafe bar, said: “This rating does not reflect our premises
“Readers need to know this is not because of the health and hygiene of our premises, our rating is all about paperwork.
“We strongly dispute that fact that the premises were not kept clean.
“On the day of our inspection, two health inspectors arrived neither wearing hats or overalls.We were told there was no need for them to do so because we were low risk.
“When we received our letter stating our rating had dropped to a one we spoke to the inspectors.
“They visited again and told the manageress that everything mentioned in the report was minor and would not affect our rating.
“The management does accept we did not have the food control blueprint booklet to hand.
“We have been told by Blackpool Council they will visit us again.
“10 weeks after the first inspection that still hasn’t happened.
“We are bitterly disappointed after 30 years in the same premises that this has happened.”
Other business owners were more pragmatic.
Sami Demirtas, of Layton Pizza and Kebab House said: “We have listened to what they told us, particularly about pre-prepared food.
“We have done everything they asked and we really hope they will come back and rate us higher.”
While more than two dozen properties received a one star rating, the vast majority of Blackpool’s restaurants and hotels were given a clean bill of health.
The vast majority of resort premises, including tourist hotspots such as the Tower, Pleasure Beach and Zoo all received five star ratings.
WHAT DOES IT MEAN?
The scores on the doors food hygiene system was established in 2011.
Council inspectors visit food premises and give them a rating out of five.
A spokesman from the Food Standards Agency explained there are three key elements in how an inspector gives a business a rating.
“A food safety officer inspects a business to check that it meets the requirements of food hygiene law,” they said.
“The officer is from the local authority where the business is located.
“At the inspection, the officer will check: How hygienically the food is handled – how it is prepared, cooked, re-heated, cooled and stored.
“The condition of the structure of the buildings – the cleanliness, layout, lighting, ventilation and other facilities.
“How the business manages what it does to make sure food is safe and so that the officer can be confident standards will be maintained in the future.
“Each of these three elements is essential for making sure that food hygiene standards meet requirements and the food served or sold to you is safe to eat.”
1789 premises inspected
6 zero-star ratings
996 five-star ratings
44 more top ratings than last year