City restaurant fined for
food safety offences
THE owners of a Thai restaurant in
Liverpool have been fined more than ₤32,500 after pleading guilty to two food
safety breaches. Thai Leisure Group Ltd, which owns Chaoprhaya, based in
Liverpool One, was also made to pay ₤4,207 in costs to the Council and a ₤120
The Magistrates Court was told that on Tuesday, 15 March 2016, Environmental
Health Officers (EHO) from Liverpool City Council carried out an unannounced,
routine inspection and found:-
► Extensive mouse droppings: to the rear of a fridge; on shelving in food
preparation area opposite; in main kitchen on shelving containing food
preparation equipment; on floor by sweeping brush and on electrical cabling and
► A dead mouse was found in the area housing the motor of the fridge.
► Missing ceiling tiles above refrigeration equipment, and within the void a
number of mouse droppings on the suspended ceiling tiles and on top of the
upright fridge located below the missing tiles.
► 2 glue boards with a number of decomposing mice attached within the ceiling
void above a food preparation area within the kitchen.
► A build up of grease on the cabling and surfaces of the ceiling tiles.
► Various uncovered foods were on display and in various stages of preparation
in the main food preparation areas of the ground floor kitchen.
► A build up of food debris and grease was discovered on floor surfaces and
various equipment surfaces in the kitchen including shelving and cooking
► The front preparation counter unclean with food debris having collected in the
interior parts behind the front grille.
► The restaurant's own daily pest check did not offer an accurate description of
the pest activity within the premises.
► The build-up of food debris within the kitchen was also indicative of a lack
of effective, routine cleaning and had the effect of attracting pests to food
The findings resulted in the immediate closure of the premises, with the
co-operation of the manager, due to the imminent risk to public health.
Officers were also provided with an Audit report dated 29 January, 2016 from
Southall Audits, an independent consultancy company instructed by Chaophraya.
Southall's report noted they were "very concerned" that the pest
issue was "escalating" and warned that without suitable pest proofing and
cleaning:- "if an EHO was to find the evidence we found of rodent activity
during our visit, there would be no question that the business would be closed
and subsequently prosecuted."
The report even recommended the restaurant close and conduct a deep clean of the
Officers were invited to re-visit the restaurant on 21 March 2017. The restaurant was
still closed at this stage and it was decided that conditions still presented an
imminent risk to health and the restaurant wasn't therefore permitted to
A further visit took place just a day later, on 22 March 2016 and it was agreed,
following that inspection, that the restaurant could re-open, conditions having
improved sufficiently in the Officers opinion.
The restaurant was subsequently awarded the lowest potential food hygiene rating
of 0 out of 5 indicating that urgent improvement was necessary.
Councillor Steve Munby, Cabinet Member for neighbourhoods, said:- "The
Thai Leisure Group has received a very substantial fine which reflects the
extreme seriousness of these charges.
This case sends out a strong message that substandard hygiene in any food outlet
across the City will not be tolerated, and our experienced team of Environmental
Health Officers are prepared to prosecute any business who puts their customers