AN 85-year-old drink driver was found to be more than twice the legal limit after police stopped him becaue he was driving too slowly, a court heard.

Burnley magistrates were told how John McCaffrey had turned to drink after his wife of almost half a century died recently.

McCaffrey is now facing a minimum three year driving ban, as he has a previous conviction for driving with excess alcohol in the last 10 years.

The defendant, of Lord Avenue, Bacup, admitted drink driving on June 7. The bench adjourned sentence until a later date and McCaffrey was given an interim driving ban and unconditionally bailed until the next hearing.

Alex Mann, prosecuting, said at 7.30pm, a vehicle was seen being driven very slowly on Newchurch Road, Bacup.

It was stopped by officers and the defendant fully co-operated with the police at the roadside.

He was taken to the police station, where he gave a sample showing 84 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath – the legal limit is 35.

McCaffrey was convicted of driving with excess alcohol in 2009, when he had been given a curfew and was disqualified for two years, said Mrs Mann.

Janet Sime, for McCaffrey, said the defendant had been married for 45 years and he had lost his wife to cancer just six weeks earlier.

The solicitor continued: “He has been drinking heavily. He accepts that.” Miss Sime told the hearing the defendant had problems with his circulation and was suffering from prostate cancer. He was due to go in hospital soon.

The solicitor added: “It doesn’t look like any family is supporting him in coping at the moment. He has a lot of issues.”