A CAR with no rear registration plate came to police attention as it clipped a kerb driving through a town shortly after midnight.

The black Vauxhall Zafira stopped in a parking bay but as police approached, driver, Ryan Varty went into reverse on to a grassed area before pulling away.

Omar Ahmad, prosecuting, said the police vehicle followed with blue lights flashing, but the Zafira failed to stop and ignored a Give Way sign at a junction and increased speed to 50-mph in a built-up area, of Bishop Auckland, early on July 3.

Varty drove over a mini roundabout, went the wrong way around other roundabouts, but lost control at a right-hand corner, as the Zafira went spinning 180-degrees before coming to a stop.

He again tried going into reverse but came to a halt after hitting a wall and a hedge.

Varty was arrested and told police he had drunk four bottles of brown ale, giving a roadside breath test reading of 90mg for alcohol, compared to the legal limit of 35.

In interview he admitted only having the car a couple of days, which was not taxed or insured, while Varty was subject of a driving ban at the time.

The 26-year-old defendant, of Archer Avenue, Bishop Auckland, admitted dangerous driving, while disqualified and without insurance.

Mr Ahmad said Varty’s 19 past offences include one for causing serious injury by dangerous driving for which he received a 28-month prison sentence, in 2015.

Chris Morrison, in mitigation said Varty, himself, described his decision to drive as, “a moment of madness”, as he had no prior intention, until returning from a friend’s house where he consumed the brown ale.

Mr Morrison said it followed, “an unpleasant few days” for Varty, including a relationship break-up.

Judge James Adkin said Varty’s previous conviction for causing serious injury should have been “a shot across the bows”, warning him of the dangers when taking to wheel in drink.

He imposed an 18-month prison sentence and banned Varty from driving for 33-months.