London Shuffle Club fined £10,000 after mouse droppings found in kitchen
An east London shuffle club has been fined £10,000 after mouse droppings were discovered in the kitchen.
The hipster-friendly cocktail bar in Shoreditch offers bottomless brunches and sourdough pizzas to punters looking to play the sport which King Henry VIII famously banned for its “addicting wickedness”.
But the Ebor Street hangout was found to have a filthy kitchen by Tower Hamlets council officers carrying out a surprise inspection.
The environmental health officers found the cleanliness of the kitchens and bar areas to be “substandard, with dirty floors, mouse droppings, open containers of flour and poor control of pests” during the inspection in November 2021.
The bar and kitchen was closed for six days until officers felt satisfied they had been sufficiently cleaned and the mice issue was under control.
A spokesman for the club said the conditions were as a result of “a temporary lapse in concentration and due process whilst reopening after Covid was recognised, which was hugely disappointing.”
The owners of the club were taken to court by the council on five charges relating to the inspection.
They pleaded guilty and were fined £10,000 at Thames Magistrates Court on February 21.
In mitigation, the court heard that there was not a serious mice infestation at the club, there was a low risk to consumers and pointed to its previous good record of food hygiene.
Kabir Hussain, environment cabinet member, said: “We have a thriving night-time economy in Tower Hamlets and people can be reassured that we will always take action against premises which fall below our high standards of cleanliness and hygiene.
“We are pleased that appropriate action has been taken at this venue to enable it to reopen.”
A London Shuffleboard Club spokesman said they had spent more than £10,000 refurbishing the kitchen and venue since the inspection “resolving all areas of concern”.
He said: “Structural and food safety issues were found, largely centred on the process, the systems and the structure of the kitchen. These were viewed by the Court as being of low risk to customers.
“This resulted in a negative score - the only one in our 5-star trading history.
He added: “While November 2021 marked a negative episode in our trading history, we took on board all of Tower Hamlets Council’s advice, quickly made all the improvements required, and put in place a plan to continuously strengthen our systems and procedures.
“This was also reviewed in the next visits by the Environmental Health team and our food safety rating improved.
“We will never compromise on our mission to deliver a great product and an amazing experience to all those who visit us and will continue to work with our independent advisors and Tower Hamlets Council to continuously improve it.”