Southwark cafe re-opens after being fined more than £6,000 for rat droppings and unhygienic conditions


A cafe owner was fined more than £6,000 after health inspectors found rats in his kitchen and grease dripping on food from a cooking hood.

A routine visit to Cimraan Cafe, at 300 Old Kent Road, in January last year also found staff and the owner had almost no idea about food hygiene.

The outlet was shut down straight away.

Owner Mohamed Mohamud Ahmed, 29, of Vicarage Grove, Camberwell was handed court costs and a fine totalling £6,991.40, at Camberwell Green Magistrates’ Court on January 30 this year.

Photo of rat droppings, grime and dirt build up on kitchen floor

The cafe has now been allowed to reopen after passing a second inspection.

Southwark council inspectors discovered the grizzly scenes a year before – an uncontrolled rat infestation in areas where food was stored, handled and processed.

A Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Order was granted at Camberwell Green Magistrates’ Court after its closure.

The café manager had a complete lack of knowledge of cleaning and disinfection when he was questioned.

Adequate checks of food temperatures were not being done and signs of rats invading the kitchen were being ignored.

The kitchen where they were found was filthy and in a bad state of repair. There were no food hygiene training records or food safety rules for staff to follow.

Photo of gnaw marks from rats chewing through woodwork

Ahmed was fined for breaches of the Food Safety and Hygiene Regulations.

Cllr Victoria Mills said: “The owner of Cimraan Café showed blatant disregard for the health and safety of his customers and his staff and his premises was in a terrible state.

Council officers work tirelessly to check and support food vendors across Southwark and I hope this prosecution will serve as a reminder to them all to adhere stringently to food safety law and operate using good food hygiene practice.”

Inspectors returned to Cimraan Café on February 5, 2018, and found the premises had been repaired, pest-proofed, fitted with new tiles and deep cleaned.

The customer toilet had been cleaned and repainted.

So the Emergency Prohibition Order was removed.

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