AN Ely hotelier has been fined £2,500 and ordered to pay £2,000 costs for breaching food hygiene regulations.

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Robert Setchell, of The Nyton, in Barton Road, admitted five breaches of food hygiene regulations when he appeared at Cambridge Magistrates’ Court last week.

The case was brought following routine inspections of the premises by the environmental health team at East Cambridgeshire District Council in August and September 2012.

A number of food safety breaches were discovered, including mouldy quiche and other items past their sell-by date, despite Mr Setchell having received training and one-to-one coaching in a course offered by the council.

Due to a longstanding history of problems with food hygiene regulations and the failure to act on warnings – officers had no alternative but to take legal action against him.

At the hearing on, February 14, Maggie Camp, senior legal assistant for the council told the court that the authority ‘took a very serious view of food safety contraventions’.

Ms Metcalfe, acting for Mr Setchell, argued problems had arisen when Mr Setchell had to dismiss one of his chefs but since employing a new chef at his premises, standards had improved substantially and were now satisfactory.

Liz Knox, head of environmental services at the council, said: “Taking this legal action is always a last resort but we are determined to protect public safety. We will continue to monitor food businesses throughout the district and if they fail to keep up adequate standards, then we will not hesitate to take legal action.”

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