Doncaster Council says it has 'moved swiftly' to end their market stall agreement with disgraced teacher, Luke Cannon, who was sentenced for sex offences committed against school pupils just days after opening the council's new £21,000 flagship stall.
Luke Cannon, 27, was sentenced to a community order and 125 hours of unpaid work during a hearing at Sheffield Crown Court on February 13 this year, after he admitted to three sex offences committed against two pupils who attended the South Yorkshire school he worked at.
It emerged earlier this month that Cannon, of Sandcliffe Road, Wheatley Hills, Doncaster opened a new business called Cannon's Seafood Bar and Delicatessen at Doncaster Market to a storm of publicity.
The council confirmed this afternoon that they have now ended 'the agreement with Cannon’s Sea Food Bar and Delicatessen' in the wake of the revelations .
A spokesman said the local authority believes terminating the agreement is 'in the best interests of Doncaster Market' and added they have already received expressions of interest from people wanting to take over the £21,000 stall.
Peter Dale, Director of Regeneration and Environment for Doncaster Council, added: “We were as shocked as everyone when the story broke and after looking into this in more detail we have taken quick and decisive action by terminating the arrangement with Cannon’s Sea Food Bar and Delicatessen.
“We are now formally seeking expressions of interest in this ‘ready to go’ hot food outlet.
“As we have already had lots of people looking into this excellent business opportunity, we are confident of a speedy turnaround with a new business expected to be up and running on this market stall by Easter.
“Doncaster Market is a hugely important part of town centre. As part of our Urban Centre Masterplan, works have started on the transformation of the Wool Market and the Corn Exchange is benefiting from a major refurbishment programme. We are always looking at commercial investments that boost the market and our investment in this stall will see a new business open shortly that encourages more people to visit our markets and the town centre.”
As part of Cannon's mitigation his barrister, Ian Goldsack, argued that the two people employed by Cannon would be at risk of losing their jobs should he receive an immediate custodial sentence.
The name of his business was not mentioned in court.
Judge Graham Reeds QC sentenced Luke Cannon of Sandcliffe Road, Wheatley Hills, Doncaster to a community order and 125 hours of unpaid work after the 27-year-old pleaded guilty to a string of sex offences including causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity.
During the hearing, prosecutor, James Baird, told the court how Cannon's offences were committed against two pupils, a girl under the age of 16, and a boy over the age of 16, who attended the South Yorkshire school he taught at. They were committed during 2015 and 2016, the court heard.
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