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27/09/2021

Drunk in charge incident on County Derry beach reminiscent of 'Last of the Summer Wine'

A 50-year-old man has been hit with ten penalty points.

Drunk in charge incident on County Derry beach reminiscent of 'Last of the Summer Wine'

Benone Strand where the incident took place.

A solicitor has said that an incident involving a 50 year-old man accused of being drunk in charge of a vehicle at Benone beach was reminiscent of an episode of long-running sitcom, 'The Last of the Summer Wine'.

Derwin Harvey made the comments during the sentencing of his client Darren Diver, whose case came before Limavady Magistrates Court on Wednesday.

Diver, of Stradowen Drive, Strathfoyle, was charged with being in charge of a vehicle with excess alcohol.

The court heard that the charge was linked to an incident on July 24 at Benone beach.

On the evening in question, police received a report from a member of the public who stated they were concerned about the manner of Diver's driving on the beach.

When officers arrived, Diver was standing beside the car and was holding a bottle of beer in his hand.

When asked by an officer where his car keys were, Diver claimed that a person unknown to him had taken them off him. He also told police that he had consumed four bottles of beer.

The court heard that a short time later the keys to the vehicle were found near Diver and he was ordered to take a breath test which returned a reading which was twice the legal limit.

Mr Harvey described the case as an 'unusual' one stating that his client claims he did not drive his vehicle in a dangerous manner or at a speed that would present as a danger to the public.

The solicitor said on the day in question it was extremely warm and Diver and two companions decided to go to the beach.

“Their intentions were to spend the night there drinking beer,” said Mr Harvey, adding that it was 'the Derry version of The Last of the Summer Wine'.

District Judge Peter King asked Mr Harvey if he believed the Derry version of 'The Last of the Summer Wine' would be 'a ratings hit'.

“Well, we've had 'Derry Girls' so this could be the version of 'Derry Boys',” replied Mr Harvey.

“Yes, 'Derry Old Boys',” laughed Judge King.

Diver was given ten penalty points and was fined £350 for the offence.

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