‘Dead rat’ restaurant back in hot water over hygiene

Shalimar Gardens
Shalimar Gardens
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An Indian restaurant has again made the headlines for its filthy conditions.

Environmental health officers who visited the Shalimar Gardens restaurant and takeaway in Talbot Road found dirty equipment and food kept in unhygienic conditions.

Shalimar Gardens restaurant and takeaway in Blackpool's Talbot Road found dirty equipment and food kept in unhygienic conditions.'Current restaurant boss, Waqas Ghazanfar, aged 30, of Talbot Road, Blackpool, today pleaded guilty to breaching eight food safety and hygiene regulations.

Shalimar Gardens restaurant and takeaway in Blackpool's Talbot Road found dirty equipment and food kept in unhygienic conditions.'Current restaurant boss, Waqas Ghazanfar, aged 30, of Talbot Road, Blackpool, today pleaded guilty to breaching eight food safety and hygiene regulations.

Last year, a man running the restaurant was prosecuted after a dead rat was discovered at the premises.

Current restaurant boss, Waqas Ghazanfar, 30, of Talbot Road, Blackpool, pleaded guilty to breaching eight food safety and hygiene regulations.

He was bailed to appear at Preston Crown Court for sentence on May 16 by Blackpool magistrates.

Presiding magistrate, Nora Sopworth, told him: “There was a high risk of adverse effects to individuals. We do not feel we have adequate powers to sentence you.”

Shalimar Gardens restaurant and takeaway in Blackpool's Talbot Road found dirty equipment and food kept in unhygienic conditions.'Current restaurant boss, Waqas Ghazanfar, aged 30, of Talbot Road, Blackpool, today pleaded guilty to breaching eight food safety and hygiene regulations.

Shalimar Gardens restaurant and takeaway in Blackpool's Talbot Road found dirty equipment and food kept in unhygienic conditions.'Current restaurant boss, Waqas Ghazanfar, aged 30, of Talbot Road, Blackpool, today pleaded guilty to breaching eight food safety and hygiene regulations.

Lynda Bennett, prosecuting for Blackpool Council, said health inspectors visited the Shalimar Gardens on January 19 and found the restaurant/takeaway filthy.

Mrs Bennett added: “There was concern for the health of people eating from these premises.”

She described the eaterie as having a history of breaching health and hygiene laws and said the premises had often changed hands between family members.

On the occasions Ghazanfar had previously been in charge, an emergency order closing the restaurant down had been made in 2006 because there was no hot or cold water.

In 2008 and 2011 Ghazanfar had broken food safety and hygiene rules at the restaurant and been fined.

The prosecutor said: “Last year when Ghazanfar’s uncle was the boss, a dead rat and rat dropping were found on the premises.”

The prosecutor added that on January 19 this year the inspectors found a gap under a rear door which could allow pests to enter the restaurant.

They also discovered food left in an open can and a rotten cucumber in a dirty fridge.

Pots, pans, kitchen equipment, fridges, freezers, and shelving were dirty and greasy, with an accumulation of waste on the floor.

There was a failure to keep adequate records for the temperature of fridges and freezers and for cooking food.

Steven Townley, defending, said his client had previously been in charge of the restaurant and at that time it had a hygiene rating of four – out of the highest rating of five.

Ghazanfar had then been sentenced to 20 months jail for an offence of wounding.

After being released from prison he again took over the running of the restaurant at beginning of this year and got industrial cleaners in to clean the premises.

Only a small area of the large kitchen area was being used to prepare food and that area was clean, but the inspectors judged the whole of the large kitchen.

Ghazanfar had also ordered new equipment, which arrived after the inspector’s visit.

Mr Townley added: “He has spent over £10,000 getting the kitchen back in order and he is confident he will get back the four star rating he had previously.”