The site of an illegal meat processing plant which was raided by Wiltshire Council has applied for permission to make these activities legitimate.

A planning application has been submitted to convert the Crown Garage on Andover Road into a meat cutting and packing facility from its current use.

In November last year, over 2.4 tonnes of meat was seized from the site after council officers stormed the site, finding beef, goat and lamb in “poor conditions”.

A planning application for the site was submitted on January 28, proposing a change of use from car valeting and vehicle repairs into a meat cutting and packing facility.

The new facility will have a covered van delivery and dispatch area for the meat facility, with a car wash area being maintained the other side of the former petrol station’s steel columns nearer to the road. The hours of its opening are not yet known.

If approved, the application would allow for the legitimate packing and cutting of meat at the site, following a prohibition of such activity at the site following a council enforcement raid.

The origins of the raid lie not in Ludgershall, but Devizes, where a car wash in New Park Street was raided in October, where they found fresh meat being cut in “grossly unhygienic” conditions.

The facility’s operator, Gent Jakupi, subsequently appeared in Swindon Magistrates’ Court where he was ordered to pay £4,024.50 to the council, as well as being banned from operating the meat cutting plant after being served with a hygiene emergency prohibition order.

He subsequently moved his operations to the site in Ludgershall, without registering this with the council or Food Standards Agency. This site was then raided on November 27, with 2.4 tonnes of meat found. Another hygiene emergency prohibition order was served, banning meat processing at the address.

At the time, Jakupi said that he was buying the meat fresh and shipping it the same day, so was unaware that he needed a licence. He added that his premises was cleaned thoroughly, describing the floor as “so clean I would be happy to eat off it.”

Wiltshire Council disagreed, with Councillor Simon Jacobs, cabinet member for public health and public protection, saying that officers were “shocked” by the conditions.

He said: “They found that even the most basic requirements such as clean food rooms, a hot water supply, washing facilities, the control of pests and basic welfare facilities for food handlers were missing. This business has put their customers at risk.

“The need for officers to have to act in this way, not once but twice, is an extremely serious matter and we are working very closely with the Food Standards Agency on further enforcement to safeguard the public.”

The application is currently under consideration by Wiltshire Council, with a decision to be made in due course.