A DISTRICT judge said it was "really depressing" to see so many drink-drivers being dealt with on one day at Chester Magistrates Court.

The remarks came as District Judge Nicholas Sanders was sentencing Tarporley chef Matthew Marren, who had pleaded guilty on Friday, January 4 to one charge of drink-driving.

Marren, 28, of Tiverton Way, was one of nine drink-drivers to be sentenced in the courtroom that day.

The district judge said to him: "It's really depressing to see so many people coming through, knowing that the police are out at this time of year looking for drink-drivers, and people like you with great potential going out to drink-drive."

Marren was banned from driving for 16 months and fined £500.

Prosecuting, Eve Johnson said a road traffic collision was reported on the A49 at Beeston on December 17 when Marren's Vauxhall Astra was blocking the carriageway. No other vehicles were involved.

When interviewed by police, Marren said he had had four pints and agreed he was over the limit.

He had no previous convictions.

In Marren's defence, the court heard it was poor decision making.

He was a chef from a rural part of Cheshire and was close to losing his job but his employer had value placed upon him.

He was remorseful and had pleaded guilty at the first opportunity.

As well as the fine and driving ban, Marren must pay £85 court costs and a £50 victim surcharge.

He was offered the chance to reduce the length of his ban by one quarter if he successfully completed a drink-drive rehabilitation course.