A MAN who didn’t want his mother to see him drinking was caught over the alcohol limit and fast asleep behind the wheel of his car while it was parked and running, magistrates were told.

Andrew French appeared in the dock at Swindon and pleaded guilty to being drunk in charge of the Vauxhall Astra at the recreation ground in Highworth on July 19.

The 39-year-old, of Swindon Road, was discovered at about 7.20pm after a concerned member of the public found him unresponsive and called the police, prosecutor Nick Barr told the court.

Officers then found him fast asleep in the driver’s seat, wearing his seatbelt with the key in the ignition and the engine idling. He gave a positive breath test that recorded a level of 88 micrograms putting him more than twice the legal alcohol limit.

Ben Worthington, defending, said his client had been out in Lechlade where he had drunk a couple of pints of cider. He then bought a small bottle of whisky and drove back. He went to the recreation ground in The Elms and began to drink it. Because it was warm weather he kept the engine running to power the air conditioning.

“He did not go home because he is currently staying with his mother. She is not a fan of him drinking to excess,” explained Mr Worthington.

French had been offered building work but delayed accepting it while waiting to see whether he would lose his driving licence and the offer had since been withdrawn, but he was looking for work again and was optimistic he would find some.

Mr Worthington said a licence was needed so he could work and visit his children who lived in Birmingham.

The bench imposed 10 points on his licence, ordered him to pay a fine of £120 with £85 prosecution costs and £30 towards victim services.