Jimmy Spice's restaurant in Wimbledon fined £10,000 for mouse infestation in store cupboards

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By julie_cross | Wednesday, January 04, 2012, 16:07

A Wimbledon restaurant has been fined £10,000 after environmental health officers from Merton Council discovered it was infested with mice.

Merton Council prosecuted the owners of the popular Jimmy Spice's Restaurant located in Wimbledon Broadway in Wimbledon Magistrates Court in December for offences dating back to March 2011.

East and West Restaurants Ltd who own Jimmy Spice's, pleaded guilty to five offences under the food hygiene regulations at Wimbledon Magistrates Court last month and were fined £10,000, ordered to pay the full council costs of £1,530 plus a victim surcharge of £15.

The council's environmental health officers visited Jimmy Spice's Restaurant on the evening of Friday, March 18, 2011 in response to a complaint received from a member of the public who was alarmed when a mouse ran over his foot whilst he was having a lunchtime meal at the restaurant.

A thorough inspection was carried out and a serious mouse infestation was found to be affecting the two food storerooms located on the first floor. Mouse droppings were found throughout the storerooms and large quantities of food had been contaminated by the mice gnawing and urinating over the packaging.

The situation was so bad that the storerooms had to be closed on the spot and were not allowed to re-open until improved pest control measures had been put in place, the contaminated food had been destroyed and the premises thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.

At Court, the company accepted full responsibility for the conditions found and stated that they now have a new pest control contractor who carries out regular checks on all parts of the premises. They also confirmed that all necessary pest proofing work has now been carried out and the staff have been retrained in food hygiene to prevent any repetition of such an incident.

Merton's environmental health officers will continue to work positively with the company and local managers to ensure standards continue to improve.

Councillor Andrew Judge, Merton Council cabinet member for environmental sustainability and regeneration said: "Our environmental health officers do their utmost to work with food businesses and restaurants to avoid closure where possible.  However, we have an absolute duty to our residents to put their needs first and we will not tolerate standards anything less than excellent when it comes to the public's health.  

"We will continue to ensure that even in these difficult financial times, if restaurants and takeaways want to stay open in Merton, they will have to meet the highest hygiene standards."

      

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