Lytham eatery fined as staff underpaid

Portofino
Portofino

A Lytham restaurant is one of two top Lancashire eateries on a list of more than 200 employers to be named and shamed for underpaying workers.

Portofino, on Henry Street, joins The Freemasons Arms at Wiswell on the list of businesses not paying the National Minimum or Living Wage.

As well as paying back staff the money owed, employers on the list have been fined a record £1.9m by the government. Retail, hairdressing and hospitality businesses were among the most prolific offenders.

Business minister Margot James said: “It is against the law to pay workers less than legal minimum wage rates, short-changing ordinary working people and undercutting honest employers.”

She said the list ‘sends the clear message to employers that the government will come down hard on those who break the law’.

Nationally, the worst offender was Argos, which failed to pay £1,461,881 to 12,176 workers In-Portofino Ltd trading as Portofino, failed to pay £1,976.15 to six workers, according to the list published by the government.

Contract Joinery (Lancashire) Ltd, based in Poulton, failed to pay £132.02 to one worker. The latest list is the 12th in the Government’s ‘name and shame’ policy.

Nobody was available to comment from Portofino or Contract Joinery.

Melissa Tatton, director at HM Revenue and Customs, said: “HMRC is committed to getting money back into the pockets of underpaid workers, and continues to crack down on employers who ignore the law.

“Those not paying workers the National Minimum or Living Wage can expect to face the consequences.”

Who else?

Other Lancashire-based employers on the government’s list include:

• Anthony Kenvig, trading as Kenvig’s Hair Marriott, Preston – £9,698.04 owed to two workers;

• Edmondsons (Freightliners) Ltd, Lancaster – £3,250.07 owed to 28 workers;

• SS Pubco Ltd, trading as The Freemasons Arms, Ribble Valley - £1,166.85 owed to two workers;

• Banny’s Limited, Pendle – £2,418.48 owed to 47 workers.

A Kenvig’s Hair Marriott spokesman said the business was now under new ownership.

Nobody was available for comment at the other named businesses.