Hygiene offences have cost the food business operator of a Stockton restaurant a total of £2,030.
Geoffrey Clark, 61, of Durham Road in Thorpe Thewles and owner and manager of The Balcony on Harrowgate Lane appeared at Teesside Magistrates Court.
He pleaded guilty to five offences under Food Safety and Hygiene (England) Regulations 2013.
When Stockton Council's Environmental Health officers carried out a general food hygiene inspection in March 2014 they found:
Filthy food preparation and storage areas
Inadequate cleaning of various items of food equipment
Wash hand basins without suitable materials to allow hygienic hand washing
In mitigation, Mr Clark said that he was a busy person and was not spending enough time at the premises. He said that all his staff were trained and systems were in place but the staff weren't effectively implementing them. He also added that the premises has been closed since last August and he has no intention of re-opening it.
He was fined a total of £1,500 and ordered to pay £500 costs and a victim surcharge of £30.
Stockton Council's Cabinet Member for Housing and Community Safety, Councillor Steve Nelson, said: "People have a right to enjoy their food in safety and expect high food hygiene standards when they go out for a meal.
"Stockton Council's Environmental Health Officers will not allow premises to continue serving food in an unhygienic way. Residents' and visitors' safety is a priority and the Council will take action against food operators who break food hygiene regulations."
Stockton Council continuously inspects food premises and the results are shown on the website http://ratings.food.gov.uk/