Chefs tip off council about kitchen shocker

South Lakeland District Council has successfully prosecuted a restaurant owner after she pleaded guilty to three counts of failing to keep her kitchen clean.

Lucy Nicholson, 55, former owner of Lucy’s on a Plate in Ambleside, was stung with a £5,000 fine and ordered to pay costs of £1,200.

Her case went to Carlisle Crown Court after environmental health officers received two complaints from contract chefs working at the restaurant.

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Officers who visited the restaurant found the kitchens to be dirty with a build up of grease on surfaces, food kept at the wrong temperatures with a lack of cleaning and proper management controls.

SLDC Cllr Claire Feeney-Johnson, portfolio holder for environment, said Lucy’s on a Plate fell “very short” of providing a safe environment to eat.

“SLDC does not like to bring prosecutions unless it has to but in this case we had a duty to protect people visiting this restaurant,” she said.

Lucy’s on a Plate is now under new management and was recently awarded the highest food hygiene rating of five stars.

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