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Leaseholder ordered to pay £100,000 fine for breach of fire safety law

25 April 2021

THE AVON Fire and Rescue Service has secured a conviction against a leaseholder of premises on Prince Street in Bristol following an audit in 2019. A Prohibition Notice was served on the premises and this was subsequently found to have been breached.

On Thursday 25 February, Ms J Brown pleaded guilty to breaching an Article 31 Notice and received a 12-month suspended sentence. In addition, Brown was ordered to pay a fine of £100,000 plus £7,450 in costs.

Karl Venn (head of fire safety and station manager for the Avon Fire and Rescue Service) said: “We welcome the outcome of this case, it sends a clear message to all leaseholders and business owners that the fire safety legislation is very important and must be complied with at all times.”

Venn added: “The initial joint visit with Bristol City Council and, subsequently, the fire safety audit carried out by our fire safety officers at the premises highlighted serious failings in relation to the legal responsibility of the leaseholder to reduce the risk of fire within the building, thereby ensuring people could escape safely if there was a fire. So much so, in fact, that a Prohibition Notice had to be served.”

In conclusion, Venn said: “I would like to thank Bristol City Council for their assistance. Its representatives worked tirelessly to ensure that those affected had some form of accommodation while the Prohibition Notice was implemented.”

The Avon Fire and Rescue Service works closely with businesses to ensure that they comply with the regulations and staff are available to offer practical advice and assistance in this area.

*For more information on the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 and keeping premises safe from fire visit www.avonfire.gov.uk/business-safety