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The Wales restaurants and businesses rated zero for food hygiene

Wales Online logo Wales Online 07/08/2022 Conor Gogarty

Some 29 businesses across Wales have received the worst possible food hygiene rating — including a historic pub and a care home.

The Food Standards Agency classes businesses with zero stars out of five as needing "urgent improvement". Council inspectors visit premises and consider how food is handled, stored and prepared. They also look at how clean facilities are and how food safety is managed.

If an inspector finds there is an imminent risk to public health they have the power to stop part of the operation or close it down entirely until the issues are addressed. They can also set a deadline for improvements.

Read next: Waitress viciously attacks woman outside pub 'after her boyfriend cheated'

WalesOnline has approached all the listed businesses for comment. If yours would like to add a response to this article, please email conor.gogarty@walesonline.co.uk.

The information below is publicly available on the Food Standards Agency website. The ratings appear as they do on that site at the time of publication.

Mary Whistance's Goytre View B&B

Address: Goytre View, Pandy, Abergavenny, Monmouthshire

Business type: Bed and breakfast

Date of inspection: May 25, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Generally satisfactory

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

What the business says:

Mary Whistance, 85, has been cooking guests breakfast for 65 years. She has lived her whole life on the farm at Goytre View, which has been in her family for five generations. "I used to do B&B but I haven't for nearly three years because of the virus [Covid-19]," she said. "I didn't close the business. I just haven't been taking bookings. Friends have been coming to stay but it's not been for business.

"Back in May I had 11 people here for my birthday. It lasted three weeks. I still had people coming to stay in the third week. It took up all my time cooking food for them. Then the inspector came and I had all sorts of leftovers out. I was still recovering from the celebrations. The birthday cake had all gone but I did give the inspector something else. I can't remember what."

She said she felt "whacked" by the rating, adding: "I've never had a bad report before. The inspector said I've got to start wearing a pinafore apron or something. And I've got to keep cereals in tins instead of the cereal boxes. I don't know what she was on about."

Ms Whistance hopes to reopen the B&B soon and has no plans to retire, because she "wouldn't know what do, lying on a beach". She believes guests will be satisfied by her full breakfasts regardless of the hygiene rating. "Oh my God, people can't speak highly enough of it," she said. "When I bring it in they go 'ooh'. My mam taught me to design the layout on the plate. The eggs are free-range from the hens running round my cousin's 16-acre field. I've never bought an egg in my life."

Cwmbran Fresh Produce

Cwmbran Fresh Produce © Google Street View Cwmbran Fresh Produce

Address: 5 Llanyravon Square, Llanyravon, Torfaen

Business type: Retailer

Date of inspection: April 20, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

What the business says:

Cwmbran Fresh Produce is a greengrocer's shop as well as a wholesaler to pubs and hotels. Andrew Wheeler said he has owned the business for about 16 years but only started managing it himself in January.

"We got a zero rating partly because we didn't have anything written down for training [staff]," he said. "The shop is clean. We're not handling fish or meat, it's low risk items — carrots and potatoes, peeled and vacuum-sealed.

"We're not allowed to make cups of tea now or anything. You can't make or have a cup of tea where you're preparing veg. I think it's very harsh myself. The inspector was telling me I should have a blast chiller to get the temperature of the veg down. What we're going to do is prepare the veg and put it in the fridge and then pack it. We're only going to put a four-day shelf life on it because most of it is used within a day or two."

Mr Wheeler expects the business' hygiene rating to improve under his management. He said: "Historically we've had poor ratings. In the last four years we've only had a one-star. I would like to get it pristine and have a five. But we have put the nought on the door and gone from strength to strength."

The Red Lion

Red Lion Inn,Caerleon © Red Lion Red Lion Inn,Caerleon

Address: Red Lion Inn, Backhall Street, Caerleon, Newport

Business type: Pub

Date of inspection: March 16, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Major improvement necessary

What the business says:

The Red Lion's Grade II-listed building dates back to the late 17th century. David Sansom, who has been the pub landlord for two years, said: "It's a very old building and it had not been kept very well over the years. Heineken has only been the [building] landlord for a couple of years. It's not responsible for the decay.

"The way the building was set up and had been added onto over the years, it meant there were certain areas which couldn't be cleaned. These were not areas for food, but storage areas. The floor of the kitchen started to split. Water started to get under the floor and lift the floor up. Under the floor couldn't be fully cleaned. [Newport Council] said it posed a risk to food safety because of the fact it couldn't be deep-cleaned in that way. They have not put any pressure on us, no timings. They are not at all worried about public safety.

"After the inspection we voluntarily closed for a couple of days to do one or two jobs they'd asked us to do. We then had an interim report off them saying that if we had a new inspection, we would be on a four.

"We've received a notice to do certain bits of structural work. Heineken is spending an awful lot of money doing that, tens of thousands of pounds. In the main kitchen the whole floor is being relaid. The screed is being hacked away and it's being refloored. We will be shut for a week when that happens. The main work will be later in the summer.

"We are trading quite strongly. Our customers like the food here. I don't think many people look at the score. Maybe four people in the last four months have asked me about it. We've explained it and offered to show them our kitchen. Only one person has taken us up on that."

Kaszana

Kaszana Polish Shop © Google Street View Kaszana Polish Shop

Address: 23 Mostyn Avenue, Llandudno, Conwy

Business type: Retailer

Date of inspection: February 8, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Major improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Major improvement necessary

What the business says:

Waldemar Pazik, owner of the Polish shop, said: "Why zero? In fact, a lot of my neglect... After delivery from the warehouse, I did not return the [cardboard] packaging to the supplier, but only collected it in the back office. Evidently my mistake.

"Another irregularity is the cutting of meats in the back room. After the first inspection, I did not read the email prohibiting these activities, and still used the slicer at the back of the store. My inattention was criticised by the inspector. The criticism was right, but my action was not a premeditation, but an oversight.

"Another mistake is the dairy cooler generating too high a temperature. With higher temperatures outside, in the fridge... the temperature increased and unfortunately I did not notice it. My mistake.

"I completely forgot about keeping a book: 'Safer Food, Better Business For Retailers'. These are, in my opinion, the main shortcomings.

"An aesthete could still find a mess in the back room, but this is a workplace. There will be a mess for a long time, because all the time I am trying to correct and repair something, so the tools and materials are at my fingertips.

"The above problems were caused by general discouragement, overwork, memory loss, etc. The past Covid-19 also left its mark. I have the impression that I have one third of my brain less. Similarly with energy and motivation to work.

"But I believe that I have met the safety conditions for handling food. The machine for slicing cold meats stands on a table made of acid-resistant steel in the store, not in the back room. The dairy cooler is 100% new, with lockable doors. The temperature inside will be constant."

Conwy Council removed enforcement notices against the shop after Mr Pazik made improvements. The shop owner added: "This was a neglect that should not have happened."

Farries Fish Bar

Farries Fish Bar, Newport © Google Street View Farries Fish Bar, Newport

Address: Farries Fish Bar, Aberthaw Road, Newport

Business type: Takeaway

Date of inspection: May 10, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Major improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Major improvement necessary

What the business says:

The owner of the takeaway said: "The issue was my paperwork wasn't all here. It was at home that time. One of our taps wasn't working that day but we have another three sinks in the shop."

She added the shop had been closed for two days just before the inspection because she had been on holiday. "The day we reopened I'd just walked in and the inspector walked in behind me," she said.

"The problems were corrected by May 18 when the officer revisited the premises. Now we are just waiting for a re-score."

Bay Court care home

Address: Bay Court, St Asaph Avenue, Kinmel Bay, Conwy

Business type: Care home

Date of inspection: May 13, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

What the business says:

Karen Jones, owner of the 13-resident care home, said: "We'd had a water tank leak from the loft and it had gone down to the kitchen. When the inspector came round we had some water damage to the ceiling and it was in the process of drying out. [The rating] was because of the kitchen lights as well. They had been out for 24 hours. The kitchen is not used at night.

"The paperwork hadn't been completed on some days. It was just in terms of the temperatures once cooked. Some of the staff had forgotten to write down the temperatures. We also had to get a new thermometer in the fridge because it was faulty.

"The day before the inspector came, the cooker broke. The thermostat on it went. A lot of things happened over a short period. Our previous rating was four. I order ingredients from the best and there's been no complaints about the food. We're very proud to have a good menu. The work was all done within days of the inspector coming. We've already had a follow-up visit and they were impressed with the work we've done so quickly."

Ms Jones also pointed to a positive recent inspection from Care Inspectorate Wales. She argued the business' high standards are also shown by its zero recorded coronavirus cases among residents since the pandemic began.

Swaddesh

Swaddesh © John Myers Swaddesh

Address: 108 Pisgah Street, Kenfig Hill, Bridgend

Business type: Restaurant

Date of inspection: May 25, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Major improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Urgent improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

What the business says:

Swaddesh owner Mohammed Rahman claims the hygiene rating has left his business on the brink of closure. He fears the Indian restaurant will only last around six more weeks due to the score, which he claims is unfair. Read our story with his full comments here.

Choc Box

Address: 1 Treforris Road, Dwygyfylchi, Penmaenmawr, Conwy

Business type: Retailer

Date of inspection: March 9, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

What the business says :

Choc Box employee Sarah Brown said: "It's because we've got no hot water. That's literally it. We're finding it hard to get a plumber and every one we've tried has let us down. We do sweets, where kids can come and pick out sweets in their bags. You need to clean all the utensils and tubs but because there's no hot water, we can't do that. We've put that section out of use since the inspection. That was the advice from the inspector."

Ms Brown added the boiler had broken only a few days before the inspection in March. "The boiler exploded on me," she said. "I'm OK. I just got soaked.

"No other food is being prepared on-site. We do have hot water but it's from a coffee machine. We can use it to fill buckets with hot water so we can clean the floor and that. But the inspector said we can't use that for the pick and mix. We thought, 'It's still hot water, it does the same thing.'"

Teifi Inn

The Teifi Inn © Google StreetView The Teifi Inn

Address: The Teifi Inn, Ffair Rhos, Ceredigion

Business type: Pub

Date of inspection: March 8, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Major improvement necessary

What the business says:

Landlord Matt Potter said: "The reason I had a zero score when I got the inspection was because I had no Calor gas left for hot water or heating on the inspection day. It was difficult to get any supplies to the pub back then as we all know. All senior staff are trained."

Catering truck at Bryn Quarry

Address: Bryn Quarry, Gelliargwellt Farm, Caerphilly

Business type: Mobile caterer

Date of inspection: February 2, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

What the business says:

A spokesperson for the Bryn Group, which runs the sandstone quarry, said the catering truck is based on the site's access road. "While the truck is not operated by nor controlled by the Bryn Group, and we have no responsibility for its operations or regulation, your enquiry brought this issue to our attention, so we have of course spoken with its owner," he said.

"Firstly, both Bryn Group and the lady who owns the truck are unclear why the business is listed as 'Price’s Snack Shack' [on the Foods Standards Agency website]. Price is not the owner’s name, nor that of her business, and it is nothing to do with the Price family that owns Bryn Group and Gelliargwellt Uchaf Farm. It appears the inspector simply chose a name. We have approached Caerphilly Trading Standards and the Food Standards Agency to get that corrected.

"Secondly, the owner of the catering unit has informed us that she has been working with Caerphilly Trading Standards to improve the paperwork and record-keeping that led to February’s rating. We understand that they are content with the improvements that she has made. However, a repeat inspection would cost her £350, which – for a small business like hers – is an expense she cannot afford. This means the rating will be reviewed when Trading Standards next inspect the truck."

Duarte's Bakery Ltd

Address: Unit 9, Tir Llwyd Industrial Estate, Kinmel Bay, Conwy

Business type: Retailer

Date of inspection: March 21, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Generally satisfactory

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

What the business says:

Director Adelino Duarte said: "The reason was the lack of one ingredient on the label of one product, and some improvements on the bakery installations. The label was changed right away during the inspection, and the improvements were made in three weeks. Since then we are waiting for the re-rating."

He added that the problems with the installations were a lack of washable walls and ceiling. "Before we took over, the business was a butcher with five stars," he said. "So honestly we never thought the walls were an issue at all.

"The food management safety system was not on site but in the office... [It] was provided to the inspector. Unfortunately that needed to be on site.

"Law is law and we, as a company, need to comply with the law. Our management team never had complained about that, agreed with, and made what was asked."

Mr Duarte said the failings were not "dangerous" to consumers. He added that food safety inspectors now have online access to the bakery's safety management system.

Old Pandy Inn

Address: The Old Pandy Inn, Pandy, Abergavenny, Monmouthshire

Business type: Pub

Date of inspection: March 29, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Major improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

What the business says:

A spokesperson for the pub said: "Our establishment has had a revisit and we are currently waiting for our new rating, which will be in the next few days."

They added that they do not know what the new rating will be. WalesOnline has asked the business why a zero-star rating was issued in March.

Eastern Delight

Address: 10 Kinmel Street, Rhyl, Denbighshire

Business type: Takeaway

Date of inspection: March 17, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Major improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Major improvement necessary

What the business says:

The owner of Eastern Delight said: "We had a health inspector come in a few days ago and we've been re-rated." He declined to answer further questions.

Heath Kitchen

Heath Kitchen in Cardiff © Google Heath Kitchen in Cardiff

Address: 42 Whitchurch Road, Gabalfa, Cardiff

Business type: Takeaway

Date of inspection: June 27, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Major improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Major improvement necessary

Halal Swansea Market

Halal Swansea Market © Google StreetView Halal Swansea Market

Address: 18 St Helen's Road, Sandfields, Swansea

Business type: Halal butcher and grocery store

Date of inspection: February 9, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Major improvement necessary

Meows

Address: 2 Pentwyn Road, Blackwood, Caerphilly

Business type: Takeaway

Date of inspection: June 28, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Major improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Major improvement necessary

Eurofoods

Address: Unit D to E, Langland Way, Newport

Business type: Distributor

Date of inspection: February 24, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Urgent improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

Total Asia Food

Address: Unit 8 Port Road, Maesglas Retail Park, Newport

Business type: Distributor

Date of inspection: December 6, 2021

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

Llanwenarth Hotel & Riverside Restaurant

Address: Llanwenarth Hotel, Brecon Road, Llanwenarth, Monmouthshire

Business type: Hotel

Date of inspection: January 16, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Generally satisfactory

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

Tintern Old Rectory B&B

Address: The Old Rectory, Main Road, Tintern, Monmouthshire

Business type: Bed and breakfast

Date of inspection: June 25, 2021

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

Llay Kebab & Pizza

Address: 3 Market Square, Fifth Avenue, Llay, Wrexham

Business type: Takeaway

Date of inspection: April 5, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Major improvement necessary

Jubilee Fish Bar

Jubilee Fish Bar in Neath Port Talbot © Google Jubilee Fish Bar in Neath Port Talbot

Address: 37 Heol Jiwbili, Cwmavon, Neath Port Talbot

Business type: Takeaway

Date of inspection: May 18, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Major improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Major improvement necessary

Ruthin Castle Hotel and Spa

Address: Ruthin Castle, Castle Street, Ruthin, Denbighshire

Business type: Hotel

Date of inspection: February 2, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Major improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Major improvement necessary

Tai Wing Express

Address: 2 Rhyl Road, Denbigh, Denbighshire

Business type: Takeaway

Date of inspection: February 11, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Generally satisfactory

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

City Spice

Address: 19 Ffordd Coed Mawr, Bangor

Business type: Takeaway

Date of inspection: April 21, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Urgent improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

My Food

Address: 62 Chester Street, Wrexham

Business type: Retailer

Date of inspection: August 17, 2021

Hygienic food handling: Urgent improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Generally satisfactory

Management of food safety: Major improvement necessary

The Best Pizza Kebab

Address: 16 High Street, Prestatyn, Denbighshire

Business type: Takeaway

Date of inspection: January 13, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Urgent improvement necessary

River Dragon Chinese Restaurant

Address: 13 Bridge Street, Llangollen, Denbighshire

Business type: Restaurant

Date of inspection: June 9, 2022

Hygienic food handling: Improvement necessary

Cleanliness and condition of facilities and building: Major improvement necessary

Management of food safety: Major improvement necessary

You can read more stories here about food and drink in Wales.

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