CHRISTCHURCH Hospital officials have requested a meeting with the council after the facility’s café was handed a poor food hygiene rating.

An inspector from Christchurch Borough Council visited the site last month and filed a report which stated overall major improvement was necessary.

The report claimed the facilities at the café were very good for cleanliness and good for food handling but improvement was needed for the management of food safety.

This relates to various areas, including having evidence that staff know about food safety and showing checks are regularly carried out to ensure high standards.

The cafe had previously been rated as a five, the top score possible, and a statement from the hospital says they are seeking clarification from the local authority after the rating changed so “dramatically”.

A Christchurch Hospital spokesperson said: “We always aim to provide our café customers with the very best service.

“Our recent food hygiene inspection rated our facilities as very good for cleanliness and good for food handling but requiring improvements for management of food safety.”

A food hygiene rating sticker displayed on the day of the visit related to a previous outlet, The Courtyard Restaurant, which has been demolished. The premises was instructed to remove the sticker and also register with the local authority.

The inspector said there was no evidence staff had received food hygiene training or had pest control records, however the hospital said this query could have been addressed on the day if requested.

The hospital spokesperson added: “The concerns relate to audit and training information, which is stored at Bournemouth hospital (rated five by Bournemouth council), and could have been provided if requested.

“Christchurch council’s previous inspection rated the café as a five, so we’re keen to understand why the rating has changed so dramatically.

“We’ve requested a meeting with Christchurch council to discuss the report but haven’t heard back from the Public Health team.”