Broken toilets, dirty shelves and blocked fire escapes - why Subway in Holmeside was given a one-star food hygiene rating by The Food Standards Agency

The Food Standards Agency conduct inspections on businesses and say that they use their expertise and influence so that people can trust that the food they buy and eat is safe and honest.

By James Barker
Tuesday, 09 July, 2019, 09:40

The Subway restaurant, in Holmeside, was inspected by The Food Standards Agency, on February 26 2019, and given a one-star rating.

The report, obtained by the Sunderland Echo, highlighted a number of issues, including poor working practices, the need for further food handling training, structural issues, and potential fire risks.

Subway store on Holmeside, Sunderland

The inspector found that the staff toilet area was out of order, and the customer toilet was dirty, ‘pitted’, had a broken seat, and was covered in glue.

Food storage shelving and extractor fan filters were dirty and the white chopping board, used to prepare the vegetables had deteriorated so much at the time of inspection that staff were told to stop using it immediately.

Staff told the inspector that the ice machine in the store could not be taken apart to clean, and had never been cleaned. However the inspector pointed out that the ice machine, could be taken apart, and showed staff how to clean this in the future.

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The report states that a damaged manhole cover in the property, which had been highlighted in their previous inspection, in July 2017, had not been fixed.

The fire exit was blocked by scaffolding and the door from the yard was bolted shut meaning that if there had been a fire at the front of the building, customers and staff would be trapped inside with no escape, inspectors found.

Inspectors highlighted previous pest control reports, which had called for the store to repair “pest holes large enough for rodents to gain access above the rear fire door” and said that this had not been done.

A spokesperson for Subway said: "We have clear expectations and procedures in place to ensure that stores serve products that meet our food safety standards.

“All issues identified at the Holmeside store were quickly rectified and the Environmental Health Officer (EHO) has since revisited the store to observe the improvements. The store owner looks forward to the next official inspection and subsequent re-rating, which he expects to reflect said improvements."