A pub has been slapped with the borough's highest ever food safety fine – over £50,000 – after a ‘large and active’ mouse infestation was discovered.

The Goose in Hoe Street, Walthamstow, was temporarily closed after Waltham Forest council officers discovered a “large and active mouse infestation” during an inspection in September 2018.

The pub – which is located by Walthamstow Central tube station – has since reopened.

Stonegate Pub Company, which runs The Goose, was ordered to pay a fine of £53,333 for inadequate pest control measures as well as costs of £4,042 and a victim surcharge of £170 at Thames Magistrates’ Court on Friday, February 7.

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Evidence of a mice infestations was discovered by council officers. Photo: Waltham Forest Council

The total sum of £57,527 is the largest ever fine for a food business operator failing to meet safety standards in Waltham Forest.

Cllr Clyde Loakes, deputy leader and cabinet member for the environment, said: “Having the correct pest control measures in place is not difficult and it’s hard to understand why the owners of The Goose failed so badly. Food businesses know they must do all they can to make sure that customers are not in danger of illness or worse because of vermin or nasty bugs in their kitchens or premises – it’s that simple.

“Aside from the damage to their wallets, food businesses risk irreparable damage to their reputations when they are prosecuted for food safety failings.”

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The pub has since been granted a four out of five hygiene rating. Photo: Waltham Forest Council

He added: “This huge fine – the largest we have seen in Waltham Forest – sends a clear message to food businesses: There is no excuse for not taking your responsibilities seriously. We will always press for the harshest penalties against those who seek to cut corners and through doing so play games with their customers’ health.”

Following improvements implemented following the closure, The Goose is currently rated four out of five on the Food Standard Agency’s food hygiene rating database after its most recent inspection in January 2019.

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