POLICE were waiting for a drink driver as she drove back home from Skipton after receiving a tip-off from a member of the public, heard Skipton Magistrates Court.

Vanessa Howarth, 38, pulled into Smithy Croft Road, Gargrave, in her Vauxhall Corsa at just after 8pm on September 25 to be met by a waiting police officer, heard the court on Friday.

She provided a positive roadside test and was taken to the police station where she provided a blood sample for analysis, which later revealed she had 185 milligrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood, more than twice the legal limit of 80, the court heard.

Howarth, of previous good character, admitted drink driving. The court heard in mitigation she was a single parent of three children and had taken one to stay with his father in Skipton where she had become upset by the comments of her former husband’s new partner.

Mitigating, John Mewies said Howarth had gone to a pub in Skipton because she was so shaken and upset where she had drunk four vodkas. Mr Mewies said she had not wanted to drink alcohol, but had felt vulnerable and had sought solace in drinking.

She had tried to arrange for a taxi to get her home, had told her son and it was suspected that her ex partner he called the police, said Mr Mewies. He said the consequences of losing her licence would be very significant as she would not be able to ferry her children to activities and functions.

Magistrates told Howarth that they had taken into account her early guilty plea and could see that she was very distressed at what had happened. They pointed out it was a high reading of alcohol in her blood, and that they could have banned her from driving for up to 22 months.

Instead, she was banned for 18 months, fined £290 and ordered to pay costs of £85 and a surcharge of £32. If she completes a drink drivers rehabilitation course, her ban will be reduced by 18 weeks.