West Berkshire gastropub owner in court over food safety breaches

The former owner of a gastropub in the West Berkshire village of Woolhampton has been brought before Reading Crown Court to face charges of breaching food hygiene regulations.

The Angel Inn, formerly owned by Shobna Joel, was visited by health inspectors back in February 2011. A number of issues were uncovered, including food in the fridges that was past its ‘use-by’ date and areas of the kitchen, particularly the floor, which were badly in need of a proper clean.

A hygiene improvement notice was served on Joel, requiring her to implement a new cleaning system and make the required improvements to food hygiene practices, including food hygiene training, in her business.

The restaurateur was also given a ‘Safer Food, Better Business’ pack to complete, but did not do so because she had her own system in place, which was apparently based on those used by big restaurant chains. Joel also failed to make some of the required cleaning and food hygiene improvements.

The business owner was eventually convicted on one charge of failing to implement and maintain procedures based on HACCP (Hazard analysis and critical control point) principles, and was given a one year condition discharge.