THREE hospitality businesses from County Durham have appeared in court after breaking Covid rules last spring.

All three were left with court bills of more than £1,000 following the breaches, which occurred at a time when businesses could open but were still facing restrictions in a bid to reduce the spread of the virus. 

The cases were heard at Peterlee Magistrates' Court on Tuesday. April 19.

Turks Head, Barnard Castle

The Turks Head public house, in Barnard Castle, was carrying out restricted business on April 30 last year.

Jason Swan, of Market Place, Barnard Castle, was facing two charges for breaches during Step 2 of the road map. 

The Northern Echo:

Peterlee Magistrates’ Court heard the pub failed to ensure that food or drink was ordered by and served to customers who were seated outside and failed to ensure customers remained seated while drinking and eating.

There was a second charge of failing to close the indoor part of the premises.

Swan did not attend court and the case was proved in his absence.

He was fined £1,000 and told to pay costs of £344, as well as £100 to fund victim services.

North Point Hotel, Tow Law

Darren Jackson, of Friary Gardens, Gateshead, appeared in court accused of breaking the rules last May.

It relates to the North Point Hotel t/a Bua Boutique at Tow Law.

He is accused of failing to ensure food and drink was served to seated customers and for failing to ensure people remained seated while they ate and drank.

The offence happened on May 18 last year, during Step 3 of the Covid road map.

The case was proved in his absence on Tuesday, April 19.

He was fined £1,000, and given court costs of £609 and £190 to fund victim services.

The Northern Echo:

The Hammer and Pincers, Newton Aycliffe

Rachel Walton, of Middleton St George, near Darlington was fined £1,300 during a hearing in Peterlee.

It relates to a breach of Covid rules at The Hammer and Pincers public house, in Preston Lane, near Newton Aycliffe on May 22, during Step 3 of the Covid plan.

Magistrates heard the pub served alcohol but she failed to ensure customers remained seated while eating or drinking.

She pleaded guilty and was fined £1,300, told to pay costs of £341 and a victim surcharge of £130.

The Northern Echo:


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