Owner of Haslington Hall jailed for fire safety breaches
Mohammed Isaq, owner of luxury wedding venue Haslington Hall in Crewe, Cheshire, has received a jail sentence after he committed fire safety breaches and put the public and his staff at risk of death and serious injury.
Mr Isaq, aged 56, had been previously warned by Fire service officials about the fire safety breaches at the venue and had been ordered to close the building.
But despite these warnings, he chose to ignore the prohibition notice that had been issued on at least three separate occasions.
Weddings were still taking place when Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service visited the venue.
As a result of his ignorance, Mr Isaq, of Hale Barns was sentenced to 20 months in jail at Chester Crown Court.
Judge Roger Dutton, told Mr Isaq, “These are very serious breaches. After all, should a disaster happen, it is the fire service who have to put the lives of their employees at risk to save lives of the public.”
“A more flagrant breach of the legislation there cannot be in my view. You simply ignored many of the important aspects of the enforcement notices and completely ignored two prohibition notices – there to ensure the public is not placed at risk.”
History of Haslington Hall
Haslington Hall was constructed in the 1500s and was part timber in construction.
It was used as a luxury wedding venue and offered overnight accommodation for guests.
Mr Isaq’s failure to take the necessary fire precautions put his employees and the public at serious risk of injury or even death.
Cheshire Fire and rescue service inspected the building and found evidence of inadequate fire detectors, firefighting equipment, alarms, signage for emergency routes and exits, escape routes and staff were not adequately trained in fire safety.
The fire service had visited the Grade I listed building back in 2012 and issued enforcement notices, in hope that the necessary works would be carried out to meet the standards required.
However, the enforcement notices were ignored in due course by Mr Isaq.
No changes had been made two years on from initial visit
The fire Service visited again in 2014 to carry out a further inspection and condemned a structure known as “The Big Marquee” within the grounds of Haslington Hall due to breaches in fire safety.
Again, they issued a prohibition notice saying that the venue must not be used.
They visited on a further 3 different occasions and found the marquee to still be in use for weddings, despite their warnings about the serious risk to the public’s safety.
This was not the first time that Mr Isaq had breached fire safety regulations.
He had previously been taken to court in January 2012 and fined by Cheshire Fire and Rescue service for breaching 9 fire safety regulations at Haslington Hall,
After pleading guilty to the fire safety breaches and was ordered to pay court costs totalling £23,815.
The inevitable eventually occurred on 24th March 2018 when a huge fire broke out at Haslington Hall.
Luckily, nobody was injured in the blaze, despite 6 different fire crews in attendance due to the size of the fire.
Cheshire fire and rescue service comment on the case
Head of Protection and Organisational Performance at Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service, Lee Shears, said, “There should never be lives put at risk in any premises and legislation is there to protect anyone using a venue such as this.”
“Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service aims to help and support all businesses to operate safely, however we will take action when owners and managers choose not to treat fire safety as a vital legitimate business requirement.”
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