FAST food takeaways and a number of convenience stores are among a handful of Stockton's worst-rated businesses in terms of food hygiene and safety rating.

In and around the area including Yarm, Eaglescliffe, Ingleby Barwick and the town centre, almost 1,500 rateable businesses have been scored somewhere between 0 and 5 in recent inspections carried out by the Food Standards Agency.

Across the UK, food outlets including convenience stores, restaurants, pubs, takeaways, hospitals and care homes are ranked by hygiene and safety, structural compliance and confidence in management.

But in the Stockton area, these are the handful of businesses that are unfortunately bringing the area's average hygiene rating down.

Food hygiene ratings

0 - Urgent Improvement Necessary

1 - Major Improvement Necessary

2 - Some Improvement Necessary

3 - Hygiene Standards Generally Satisfactory

4 - Hygiene Standards Good

5 - Hygiene Standards Very Good

Source: Food Standards Agency - all ratings correct at time of publication on Sunday, February 23.

Businesses with a 0 rating - Urgent Improvement Necessary

Best one Store, Surrey Road, Norton - inspected November 2019

Businesses with a 1 rating - Major Improvement Necessary

Hamza Catering, Skinner Street, Stockton - inspected March 2019

Picasso Pizzeria, Oxbridge Lane, Stockton - inspected December 2019

Rosedene at Eaglescliffe (nursery), Butts Lane, Eaglescliffe - August 2019

Tina's Off Licence, Windlestone Road, Billingham - inspected July 2018

Usman's Food Store, Yarm Lane, Stockton - inspected January 2019

Businesses with a 2 rating - Some Improvement Necessary

Apna, Northcote Street, Stockton - inspected October 2019

Maharaja Tandoori, Myton Road, Ingleby Barwick - inspected August 2019

Metro Inns, Teesway North Tees Industrial Estate - inspected January 2020

Pizza Hotline, Surrey Road Norton - inspected November 2019

Presto Pizza, Healaugh Park, Yarm - inspected November 2019

Spar (convenience store), Lanehouse Road, Thornaby - inspected October 2019

Tommy Tuckers, Dovecot Street, Stockton - inspected May 2019

What the local authority is saying

Councillor Steve Nelson, Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Access, Communities and Community Safety, said: “Our Environmental Health officers work very closely with food business operators across Stockton-on-Tees to help them maintain good hygiene standards and also provide a full range of support, advice and training.

“Members of the public have the right to expect their food is prepared safely and correctly when choosing a place to eat and that’s why our officers regularly inspect food business premises.

"They continue to work hard to find operators who break food hygiene regulations and will take firm action against them.

"But it’s also important to remember that we have many good food establishments in the Borough, and that the majority of them display their food hygiene ratings for the public to see.

“If you don’t see the rating at a takeaway or other food business, you can search for a rating on the Food Standards Agency website and there are a number of apps that provide that information too.

"Anyone with concerns about a food business should contact 01642 526575.”

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