A MAN who was persuaded to have a drink by friends he had taken to a Christmas do narrowly failed a breathalyser as he drove home.

Blackburn magistrates heard while the legal limit is 35 police in Lancashire do not prosecute anything under 40 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath.

"That is the reading my client blew and if it had been one microgramme less he would have been OK," said Damian Pickup, defending.

Clifford, 48, of Bridge Street, Great Harwood, pleaded guilty to driving with excess alcohol and other than in accordance with a licence. He was fined £173 with £85 costs and £32 victim surcharge and banned from driving for 12 months.

Mr Pickup said the case also dispelled the myth that you could have two pints and drive. He said his client had taken some friends to a Christmas do and they had persuaded him to go in for a drink.

"He had two pints of lager over an hour and he thought he would be OK to drive," said Mr Pickup. "He has made a mistake although the margin was as fine as it could be."