AN Indian restaurant in Jericho was closed by environmental health officers after neighbours complained of mice.

Oxford City Council sent a team of officers to Jamals, in Walton Street, last Tuesday lunchtime.

They were so concerned by standards of cleanliness that they issued staff with orders to close at 6.40pm under regulation eight of the food hygiene regulations 2006.

Environmental health officer Richard Kuziara said: “The inspection was carried out as a result of a complaint from a neighbouring property about rodents.

“They co-operated with the requirements of the notice.

“They had to clean the place, sanitise and disinfect the premises, pest-proof the building and fill in any gaps. They had no hand washing facilities, they had disconnected hand washing basins.

“Any food made that could have been contaminated had to be disposed of and we watched them do this.

“And there was a requirement to removed any redundant equipment and rubbish.”

He added the restaurant re-opened the next day, on March 14, from 6pm.

Mr Kuziara added: “At 3.30pm on Wednesday, March 14, we issued a certificate to say the risk no longer existed.

“The immediate risk to health has been removed.

“They were very co-operative. As soon as we told them what we were doing they did everything they could to get open again.”

The council’s team will now keep an eye on the restaurant to make sure standards are maintained.

To prove the decision to close the premises was justified, Oxford City Council representatives will now appear at Oxford Magistrates’ Court on Friday to present evidence they say will prove the restaurant’s temporary closure was justified.

Mr Kuziara said: “A closure like this is used in cases where there is an immediate risk to health, meaning that if there’s a potential to cause food poisoning and make someone ill we have to address that.”

He added that there had been no reports of any illness caused by the restaurant’s food.

No-one from Jamals was available for comment.