A pensioner with an "appalling driving record" has lost his licence for five years after going out for lunch with his wife whilst banned from the roads.

Richard Pearce, of The Planks in Old Town, pleaded guilty to one charge of driving while disqualified and one charge of driving without insurance.

The 72-year-old appeared at Swindon Magistrates Court for sentencing.

Police stopped the defendant on County Road at 12.30pm on November 26, 2023, because they suspected that he was flouting a driving ban and were proven correct.

He had lost his license for three years after being convicted of drink driving in May 2022, and his history of similar convictions and driving bans dates back to 2000.

Pearce apologised from the dock but was then advised by his solicitor, Richard Williams, to stop talking after going on to admit to other times he had been behind the wheel of his wife's Ford Fiesta while banned from doing so.

Mr Williams added: "He's a carer for his partner and wanted to take her out for Sunday lunch and do something nice for her."

Chair of the bench, Jane Flew, extended his driving ban until 2029.

She said: "I hope you never get behind the wheel of a car again."

Pearce, who had brought a bag with him in case he was jailed, thanked her for her leniency.