Penalty action taken against hospitality business owners

Northampton Borough Council has taken action against the respective owners of two businesses that failed to comply with the Government’s Covid-19 guidance.

Several breaches were observed by Environmental Health Officers on Friday, 23 October at Stereo Club on Bridge Street and at The Old House on Wellingborough Road.

A fixed penalty notice of £1000 was issued to the owner of Stereo Club where officers found customers standing in groups – with staff not taking any action to remedy the situation – breaching the Government’s stipulations about management of customer behaviour.

The fine follows on non-compliance issues identified during previous visits. The owner was provided with advice and guidance on how to conform to coronavirus regulations and warned that continued non-compliance would result in a fixed penalty.

The same night, officers also visited The Old House on Wellingborough Road, where customers were found on the premises after 10pm.

A prohibition notice, formally requiring premises to close at 10pm or face prosecution, was issued to the owner of The Old House.

Councillor Anna King, Cabinet member for community safety and engagement, said: “The Council always tries to engage with businesses and explain the guidance to them before encouraging them to follow it, in line with the recognised approach.

“However, the owners of Stereo Club demonstrated a disregard for public safety when our officers visited on Friday and the Council was left with no choice other than to take action.

“With Covid-19 infections on the rise, we all have a responsibility to play our part in trying to reduce these concerning levels.

“On our part, we have to ensure Northampton businesses are not flouting the rules and helping to protect residents’ safety.”

Both notices were served under Regulation 3 of the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Local COVID-19 Alert Level) (Medium) (England) Regulations 2020.