A PUBLICAN who breached health and safety regulations and regularly flouted court summons has been ordered to pay more than £6,700.

Colin Smith was found guilty of contravening a health and safety notice requiring a “suitable and sufficient” assessment following a trial at Colchester Magistrates’ Court.

As landlord at popular pub and gig venue The Bull, in Crouch Street, Colchester, the 52-year-old failed to ensure staff at the premises had a valid risk assessments over noise at work.

Victoria Jempson, prosecuting, said: “A Colchester Council health and safety officer had been part of a team taking part in a campaign around the town centre.

“In April 2017 the officer made inquiries and various failed attempts to meet Smith who had made promises to provide the assessments.

“He was issued with an enforcement notice in September 2017 that required him to under take a reassessment.

“He requested an extension to the end of October 2017 but what was provided by Smith to the council was not suitable or sufficient to protect the safety of employees.”

He was taken to court by Colchester Council, but failed to turn up for several hearings before finally being found guilty by magistrates in September 2018.

In April last year he was also reprimanded for failing to provide the Crown Prosecution Service with evidence he said he had acquired from a noise expert before a hearing.

Defending himself at Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court yesterday, Smith said he had no assets and was living in his partner’s mother’s caravan at Thornley Bay caravan park on Canvey Island.

He said: “I have always been compliant with the laws.

“I have run bars for 20 years and I got a professional company in which does the assessments for half of Colchester. The rest of the town is fine.

“All I can do is apologise to the court but at the moment I have no way to pay.”

Magistrates ordered Smith, who also used to run the Hole in the Wall pub, to pay a £240 fine for his offence.

But he was also ordered to pay the prosecution’s costs - making a total of £6,702.74.

He has 28 days to pay.