A judge has reduced EastEnders actor Jamie Borthwick’s six-month driving ban to two months.
The 27 year old was banned from driving for six months, fined £660, and a further £166 in court costs, after he admitted to speeding in his Mercedes at 52mph on a 30mph road in Romford, east London, in May last year.
Since his driving ban came into effect, Jamie, best known for playing Jay Brown on the popular soap, has been paying for public transport to get to BBC studios for filming.
However, his lawyer claimed that he is now unable to take public transport to work because he is constantly recognized and is unable to drive his great uncle and aunt to their hospital appointments.
Jamie’s case was heard in a closed court hearing known as a Single Justice Procedure on December 1 last year.
He was then given six penalty points at Romford Magistrates’ Court on January 31.
On Thursday, Croydon Nightingale Court heard how the soap star was banned from driving for six months as he was over the maximum points of 12 on his license as he already had six previous points.
During the court proceedings, Borthwick appealed his sentence, citing difficulty getting his relatives to hospital appointments and being noticed for his work on television on public transport.
His lawyer Alex Owen said: “The circumstances of this offense are the road is a dual carriageway which isn’t signposted at 30mph limit, but of course, the presence of street lights indicates that. He was unaware of that at the time, he was wrongly under the impression it was a 50mph limit.
“It took place in the midafternoon, and it was relatively quiet at the time. No danger was caused.
“Mr Borthwick is working at the moment. He is currently paying for himself to arrange transport to and from work at a considerable cost to himself. Having spoken to him this morning he tells me both his great uncle and great uncle’s wife – the closest thing he has to grandparents – are both ill.
“They are both 75. His uncle’s wife has around four hospital appointments a week, mostly in London – too far for them to travel.
“His great uncle is waiting for an operation to his knee, having been a laborer for most of his life. He is driving to appointments and has been told by his doctor he should not be driving.
“His family and two sisters are all working full time or in education. They have been managing for the past month with the great uncle’s driving getting worse.
“In those circumstances because of his flexible working hours he’s the best person and available person to take them to appointments. Particularly when his uncle has the operation he won’t be able to drive for some time.
“Mr Borthwick does attend a number of charitable appearances. For the most part he’s responsible for his own travel to and from those appearances and as he is not able to drive he is not able to do those.
“He has issues with public transport and being recognized and not all of those encounters have been favourable.”
Granting the appeal to have Jamie’s six-month ban reduced to two, the Crown Court’s Recorder, Richard Thomas, said: “The effect of the imposition of the six penalty points was that he had 12 points on his license.
“He had two previous convictions, one from 2018 which was three points and another from July 2021 which post-dated the incident but was on his license by the time of conviction and sentence.
“What he asks us to is exercise our discretion, taking into account mitigation and either impose five points or disqualify him up to 56 days,
“With some degree of ambivalence and having carefully thought about it we are just about prepared to replace his points with a disqualification of 56 days.
“And so the sentence will be exactly the same as in the magistrate’s court except the sentence of six points will be amended to disqualification of 56 days.”
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