A MAN who had ‘‘forgotten’’ about his driving ban has admitted driving a friend’s car the wrong way around a traffic island while disqualified.
Harrogate Magistrates heard on Tuesday how Daniel Matthew Heslop, 40, of Mayfield Grove, Harrogate, had been banned from the roads for five years by Bradford magistrates in 2006 for one of a number of drink-drive offences.
The sentence had stipulated that once the ban was served he had to take a fresh driving test before getting back behind the wheel.
Heslop’s solicitor Clive Farndon said he had complied with the fixed period of the ban but had unfortunately forgotten the court’s comment about not driving until he took and passed a new driving test.
Mr Farndon said Heslop had been driving a friend’s Peugeot 207 only a short distance when he was spotted by police and pulled over.
Prosecutor Katie Varlow said the car had come to the attention of a police patrol in East Parade, Harrogate, on March 8. It had been seen going the wrong way around a traffic island and moving off at speed.
The court heard Heslop was already subject to a community order after an earlier appearance and was engaging well with the probation service in a bid to address alcohol problems.
When presiding magistrate Dr John Garraway suggested a further community penalty might be appropriate, duty probation officer Jane Cox said all that could be offered was a curfew which would isolate Heslop and perhaps encourage him to drink at home.
Because the original community order included an alcohol treatment requirement – he had been referred to a detoxification programme but was still drinking heavily – the rules did not allow for unpaid work to be ordered.
Dr Garraway fined Heslop £100 for each of his two offences, banned him from driving for six months – with the necessity to take a test after that if he wanted to drive again still in force from 2006 – and ordered costs of £85 together with a £15 victim surcharge.