Landlady is reaching for the stars

THE landlady of a town s hotel is appealing to Mid Beds District Council to put stars in her eyes. Lyn Whitmore says because the Crown Hotel in Biggleswade got zero stars for the council s scores on doors for its hygiene she is losing trade. Lyn, who also

THE landlady of a town's hotel is appealing to Mid Beds District Council to put stars in her eyes.

Lyn Whitmore says because the Crown Hotel in Biggleswade got zero stars for the council's scores on doors for its hygiene she is losing trade.

Lyn, who also runs the New Inn in the town which scored two stars, says she took over the hotel without knowing it had registered zero in the ratings by council inspectors.

Now she says as all the work has been done to improve the kitchen and other areas of the hotel the council should immediately give it a better rating instead of waiting six months until the next scores on doors are announced.


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"I am sure once people read the hotel got zero in the press they have been frightened off from coming here and eating," said Mrs Whitmore.

"Throughout December people were coming in here and talking about it and in the end we were worried whether people were going to turn up on the night for their meals.

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"We have worked very hard to turn things around here and had no complaints. We've replaced tiles in the kitchen and retrained and replaced staff.

"All the staff that was here when we were inspected last year have gone. The inspectors have been back and seen what we have done but we still have to keep our zero rating until the council do their next scores on doors inspections in the middle of the year.

"It isn't fair and what makes matters worse is that I didn't know about the zero rating when I took on the place. The first I knew about it was when I read it in The Comet.

"Businesses should be given a few weeks to turn things around and do any of the recommendations inspectors say need doing before the scores on doors are given."

A spokesman for Mid Beds District Council said: "Scores on the doors are based on a national scoring scheme endorsed by the Food Standards Agency and awarded only at the primary inspection of premises.

"Whilst we are sympathetic to Miss Whitmore's situation we hope she will understand that the score given reflects sustained good management and continuing high standards of food hygiene.

"This score also sets the next visit date and a new primary inspection would not be undertaken where only the management has changed, as in this case, but there were no changes in the staff or types of food served, etc.

"Mid Beds has limited trained and experienced officers who cover this area of work and they follow an annual inspection programme. Any change to this programme would result in others waiting longer for their primary inspection.

"The next programmed inspection will take place in the summer when the premises' score will be revised in line with any food safety improvements, carried out by the new manager and her staff.

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