Borough Council of Wellingborough

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Owner fined for filthy catering business with no hot water

Published Tuesday, 10 March 2020

The owner of a Wellingborough catering business has been prosecuted after officers discovered the premises had no hot water and filthy conditions.

Mr Rohit Patel, of R Caterers, Mill Road, Wellingborough, pleaded guilty to six food hygiene offences at Northampton Magistrates Court on 16 December 2019.  However, due to the seriousness of the offences the Probation Service were asked to provide a report to the Magistrates Court on sentencing.  

On Tuesday, 10 March 2020 at Northampton Crown Court Mr Patel was issued with a 12 month community order with 150 hours of unpaid work and ordered to pay £1500 towards costs to the council.

Council officers carried out an inspection on 14 December 2019 at R Caterers, Mill Road, Wellingborough, a catering business which produces hot food for the elderly, and found the premises had no hot water supply to either the kitchen or toilet and to be in a filthy condition throughout.  Conditions were so bad officers believed there was an imminent health risk to the public.

The premises was filthy with dripping grease on walls, engrained dirt on surfaces and food equipment, insufficient work surfaces, posing a significant risk of cross contamination to food.    
The risk was so significant and the general conditions so poor that Mr Rohit Patel agreed to voluntarily close the business until such a time that the health risk to the public had been removed.  Due to the conditions found at the time of the inspection, however, the owner was prosecuted.

Leader of the Borough Council of Wellingborough, Cllr Martin Griffiths, said: “Officers found appalling conditions when they inspected this catering business. There was no hot water to the premises and the whole place was filthy.
 
“We work informally with businesses where possible to make sure high standards are maintained. In this case we had visited the business on a number of occasions, but when considerable failings are found that significantly risk public health, we won’t hesitate to take enforcement action.

“These offences were particularly serious. The public’s safety is a key priority and we will do whatever is necessary to make sure people have peace of mind when eating food from a registered food business within the borough.”

Officers have now authorised for the premises to re-open following installation of a new hot water boiler, kitchen and toilet refurbishment and additional food preparation surfaces provided.  The council is working proactively with Mr Rohit Patel to improve his businesses Food Hygiene Rating Score.