Following the hearing at Bodmin Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday 23 August, licensee Adrian Olsen of the Tredrea Inn, Padstow, pleaded guilty to five food hygiene offences.
Bowen pleaded guilty to three offences (three were withdrawn).
He was fined £300 for each charge, £900 in total.
He had to pay a £30 victim surchage and £1,052.50 in costs.
Olsen was charged with five offences.
He was fined £300 for each offence, £1,500 in total.
He had to pay a £30 victim surcharge and £3,000 in costs.
He was ordered to pay a total of £4,530 and his business partner Jeremy Bowen also pleaded guilty to three food hygiene offences at an earlier hearing and had to pay a total of £3,125, which included the council’s costs.
- Find out how to get a five-star food hygiene rating here.
The council’s public protection team first raised concerns about hygiene at the pub following an unannounced inspection in July 2016.
The inspection found the kitchen to be very dirty and in poor repair with no management systems in place or evidence of staff training.
Officers also found food and waste material were not being stored correctly and a lack of pest-proofing and the presence of open foul drains outside the kitchen door encouraged rodents and other pests.
Following the initial inspection, officers carried out a number of visits to the pub and, on one occasion, found rodent droppings in areas where food was stored.
The pub was awarded a four-star food hygiene rating in May this year and licensee Olsen told The Morning Advertiser the prosecution came as a shock.
He said: “We thought if we were complying and doing what the inspector asked, we would not be prosecuted.
“We were quite shocked when we got the summons out of the blue when we thought we had done everything [asked of us] and more.”
Olsen’s business partner Bowen also highlighted his dismay at receiving the prosecution. He said: “I was gobsmacked and upset after all the hard work we put into the pub and getting it to where it was (its four-star rating).”
Bowen did refute the council's comments on the rat droppings and argued there had never been an infestation of rats at the pub and the business has pest control procedures in place.
However, Bowen added the incident wouldn’t impact the future of the pub and he was striving to improve.
He said: “I am aiming to get a five-star rating and we will get it by the time the inspectors come out again, I am determined.”
But Bowen also said he pleaded guilty in court in a bid to protect the future of the pub.
He added: “I just bit the bullet because I wanted the pub to go on and I couldn’t have this hanging over us.”
Food hygiene standards
Cornwall Council senior environmental health officer Tony Pepperell said the council's role was to ensure food is prepared correctly and advise business owners who need help.
He added: “Food hygiene inspections play a vital role in keeping people safe.
“When you’re visiting a pub, restaurant or café, you won’t be able to see behind the scenes at how your meal is prepared or how the ingredients have been stored, but we can.
“We take this role seriously – we offer help and advice to business owners who need it, but will prosecute if action isn’t taken to improve conditions.”
Cornwall Council environment and public protection cabinet member Sue James said: “This prosecution sends out a clear message that Cornwall Council will not tolerate poor standards of food hygiene, particularly where businesses repeatedly offend.
“Our officers aim to both protect the public and provide a level playing field to the businesses that do take their obligations seriously.
“These businesses invest time and money to achieve high standards and should not be unfairly disadvantaged.”