Two Surrey businesses have been ordered to make urgent improvements after receiving the lowest possible food hygiene score from inspectors.
Cheers Wine Store in Ashford and Cobham Spice and Grill both received a zero out of five rating in May this year, and are two of the county’s seven companies with the lowest rating.
Regarding the low score of Cobham Spice and Grill, the inspector said: “In this case, our inspection revealed non-compliance with a number of food hygiene requirements.
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“We worked closely with the company and sent out hygiene improvement notices. The company has cooperated and has already worked hard to make the immediate improvements required under food hygiene legislation, and we have carried out two reviews to verify standards and progress. ”
The company name is now different on the restaurant’s signage and is known as Cobham Spice Oven, which calls into question the restaurant’s choice to rebrand. However, the board explained that the names have always differed between its website and its facade.
An inspector working for Elmbridge Borough Council said: “The food hygiene rating that is assigned as a result of an inspection reflects the food hygiene standards found on the date of the inspection. The ratings are on a scale of 0 to 5, with a rating of zero signifying that urgent improvement is needed.
A council spokesperson added: “We carry out food hygiene inspections in the district to verify that companies are complying with the food hygiene law. We also give a food hygiene rating to help customers choose where to eat in the restaurant. Ninety-eight percent of the premises inspected at Elmbridge met a standard of three or higher.
“When businesses get low or no marks, we work closely with them and advise and support businesses throughout training, as well as food safety courses that help equip kitchen staff with skills and necessary knowledge. “
The owner of the premises declined to comment on obtaining a zero food standards score.
Cheers Wine Stores on Station Road in Ashford suffered the same fate in May.
A spokesperson for Spelthorne Borough Council said: “Due to the fact that this is an ongoing matter, there is a limit to what we can say at this time.
“During the recent food hygiene inspection, the environmental health officer found that the food hygiene measures in the premises were very poor and, as a result, the company received a score of 0 in terms of food safety. Environmental health officers work with the company to achieve improvement.
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The store owner, who declined to be named, said: “It’s always a shock to see the inspectors coming in and we were really disappointed with the score we got from the inspection.
“I’m doing my best. The board has given us two months to see things right before facing another inspection next month.
“We hope that next time we have changed the issues and worked to take all advice into account.”
Companies with a low score can request a re-inspection three months after the initial inspection; this is when food standards scores may increase as a result of improvements.