A GROCERY store infested by mice has been shut just days after health officials closed the takeaway next door.
Health staff investigated Tariq Stores in Blacker Road, Birkby, after the adjoining Taj Mahal was shut down, Huddersfield magistrates heard yesterday.
The convenience store sells many food items, including fruit and vegetables and meat from its in-store butchery.
Health officer Gillian Rockett visited the shop, owned by Hewa Rihem of Thornton Lodge Road, Thornton Lodge, last Wednesday.
She found severe mouse infestation and very poor standards of hygiene.
The court heard that mouse droppings were found in a number of areas, including the edges of the kitchen, butchery and the toilets.
Droppings were also found near the fruit display and vegetables.
A dead, decomposed mouse was found in the kitchen.
Food debris was found in several places and the kitchen floors and walls were filthy.
Flies were found crawling around the food crates.
Yoghurt past its use-by date of June 3 was found on sale.
Mrs Rockett told the court: "The pest control officer said it was a very severe and active infestation.
"He said it was one of the worst situations he had seen.
"He was also very concerned about the raw sewage outside the premises."
Officers decided there was an immediate risk to public health and served an emergency prohibition notice following the inspection.
This meant that the shop had to close immediately.
Magistrates heard that health officer Josie Brown visited the premises two days later to check that it had not been opened to customers.
She heard the meat saw in operation and meat being prepared for sale.
A shopper was also seen leaving with carrier bags. Ms Brown said she was sure the bags contained meat.
She added that Mr Rihem told her he was not aware of any trading taking place.
Mr Rihem was not in court to hear the magistrates confirm the emergency prohibition notice.
This means that the shop must stay closed until environmental health officers are satisfied that the problem has been put right.