AN IMPASSIONED plea to spare a serial Tetbury drink-driver, who flouted a suspended sentence order, failed to save the 25-year-old from prison.

Nicholas Cook of Market Place, Tetbury, pleaded guilty at Cheltenham Magistrates Court yesterday to drink-driving, driving whilst disqualified and without insurance.

Alcoholic Cook also admitted that by committing the offences in Sheep Street, Cirencester on August 11 he was in breach of a suspended sentence order.

He also admitted failing to attend for unpaid work sessions on June 30 and July 21.

Cook was appearing for sentence after the court had studied a pre-sentence report prepared by the probation service.

Prosecuting lawyer Sonia Alford said: “It was 2.45am when police on patrol in Cirencester saw a VW Golf being driven in an erratic manner.

“The vehicle was swerving and went on to the wrong side of the road.”

The court heard that officers followed the vehicle into a car park.

“They stopped the car and the defendant smelled of alcohol so he was breath-tested and then arrested,” said Ms Alford.

A station breath test revealed that Cook had 85 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath, the legal limit being 35 micrograms..

Cook had previously been disqualified from driving for an offence of excess alcohol until 2022, the court was told.

Probation officer Jo Hall said: “His compliance with the suspended sentence order has been quite poor and the issue that needs to be addressed is his alcohol consumption. His offender manager recommends activation of the suspended sentence.”

Defending lawyer Liz Hyams argued “It would be unjust to activate the suspended sentence as to do so would do nothing to address the issue of his alcohol problem.

“To send him to prison today would not help anyone and I urge the bench to give him one last chance.

“He is going to move in with his mother who sits at the back of the court and he is going to A.A. meetings and has joined a gym.

“It would be better for him and for society if he gets the help he needs now. He is now ready to comply with a drug and drink rehabilitation requirement.

“If he goes to prison today he will lose his job – he has already lost the woman he was going to marry.”

But, telling Cook that it was a miracle nobody was killed, magistrates jailed him for a total of 12 weeks and banned him from driving for four years.