DARTFORD: Driver pleads guilty to drink driving and loses his job

A MILKMAN who crashed his float into a lamp-post after drinking brandy on his round, has left his job.

Dennis Burke, aged 64, of Juniper Walk, Swanley, was two times over the limit when police arrested him.

Appearing at Dartford Magistrates' Court last week, he pleaded guilty to drink driving and was banned from driving for 18 months and fined £100 with £55 costs.

Burke crashed his float on Top Dartford Road on November 8 after drinking brandy with a customer.

Resident James Aitkenhead, 21, was at home when the sozzled milkman crashed in front of his house.

He told News Shopper: "Dozens of broken milk bottles were scattered all over my lawn, the windscreen of the milk float was shattered, and a lamp-post was knocked to the ground."

He added Burke, who had a cut to his forehead, appeared "hammered" and was "staggering".

He also claimed to have found a bottle of brandy inside the float.

Dartford magistrates heard Burke was given a glass of brandy on the morning of the accident by a customer he had visited regularly over the last 14 years.

He had been off work the previous week with flu and decided to call in to see the elderly lady 20 minutes after he finished his round because he missed her the previous week.

Burke's employers Associated Co-operative Creameries has decided the drunken father-of-two has delivered his last pint and offered him early retirement.

Neither the company nor Burke were available for comment.

Famous drinkers of Brandy Alexander

MIXING brandy and dairy products is not unique to former milk float driver Dennis Burke.

A mixture of brandy and either milk or cream, or a blend of the two, is known as Brandy Alexander and was a pop ular cult drink in the 1970s much used by popstars like former Beatle John Lennon, American folk-rock singer Harry Nilsson and former Who bass guitarist John Entwhistle.

Nilsson and Lennon spent a year-long "lost weekend" drinking various concoctions based on Brandy Alexander during one of Lennon's splits from Yoko Ono.

Usually a blend of brandy, some form of cocoa or cinnamon topping and either milk, ice-cream or cream.

A sweet cocktail, it was often an after-dinner drink but this was not always the case during popstar binges.

Coincidentally, Lennon, Nilsson and Entwhistle are all now dead.