Owner of 'Britain's worst hotel' banned from running it

AOL Travel

The owner of a hotel dubbed the 'worst in Britain' has now been told he can no longer run the establishment - after inspectors discovered a mouse infestation, raw sewage and flies on site.

Stephen Gethin, 62, was deemed unfit to continue running the Happyvale Hotel in Mornington Crescent, London, after 30 years at its helm.

The hotel acts as a hostel for homeless and vulnerable people, and Gethin earned up to £130,000 a year in payments from the Government.

According to the Daily Mail, he was this week found guilty of 15 health and safety offences committed last year and issued with a £20,000 penalty by Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court.

Back in 2012, Gethin was fined £5,000 after officials discovered cockroaches in the 17-bedroom hotel, which was opened by his mother 80 years ago as a bed and breakfast for labourers.

According to the Evening Standard, District Judge Newton said Gethin "exhibited a callous disregard for the safety and welfare of vulnerable residents, a wilful refusal to comply with statutory obligations, regular contraventions of legislation over the years, had failed to respond to advice from the council, and had exhibited a dismissive attitude towards the local authority."

Councillor Julian Fulbrook, Camden's cabinet member for housing, told the paper afterwards: "It should be renamed the Unhappy Vale Hotel, it's really quite grim.

"It fails on all the standards and regulations which is why the judge, having considered all the evidence, has come to a view that Mr Gethin is unfit to run it. That's very rare."

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