On Thursday 30 October 1997, A RISHTON dairy farmer
was jailed for two months for failing to meet hygiene standards and
polluting a nearby stream. He put his wife in charge of the business.
John Barker, then 42 years old, of Moorside Farm,
Avenue, was imprisoned for breaking food safety regulations, failing
to comply with an improvement notice on a milk bottle-testing machine
with gas oil in February 1997.
Hyndburn magistrates sentenced him to two months
for each of the offences, to run concurrently. Barker was convicted of
four offences, including failure to keep areas of the farm clean,
failure to comply with an improvement notice and the storage of refuse
which attracted vermin.
Hyndburn's environmental health officers continued
to monitor the dairy, which is now operating under father-of-four
Barker's wife Julie.
The court heard how Barker had supplied a bottle of
milk for sale in Blackburn which contained a one-inch square fragment
of glass. Jane Morgan, prosecuting, told the court the gas oil
pollution at the
Paper Mill Lodge was from a faulty storage tank on
A Hyndburn Council spokesman said "It was an
indication of the seriousness of the offences that the magistrate
decided a jail sentence was the only option." Duncan Nightingale,
defending, said: "Barker had lost his business, his house and had
debts of £100,000. He didn't believe he was a man who had wilfully
gone out to cause injuries or wilfully caused the tank to leak."
Lancashire Evening Telegraph 30th October 1997.