A FATHER-of-two who has multiple offences of drink driving and driving while disqualified on his record has been sent to prison after he was caught drink driving just months after receiving a suspended jail sentence.

James Vincent Lowe was jailed for a total of five months on Tuesday (June 13) after he was stopped in Newtown last month with several beer cans in his car.

Lowe, 33, got behind the wheel of his partner’s car on May 26 to drive to the supermarket to get specialist baby formula for his seven-month-old baby.

Lowe, from Newtown, was handed an 18-month suspended prison term last September for driving while disqualified and failing to provide a specimen when he had been suspected of drink driving after causing a three-car collision. He had also been disqualified for five years, until 2027.

Lowe, a dairyman who works on a farm in Shropshire, admitted drink driving, driving while disqualified and driving without insurance at Tuesday’s hearing.

Prosecutor Helen Tench said was around 10.20pm on May 26 when police pulled Lowe over on New Road in Newtown due to the fact his Ford Focus had a faulty brake light.

“PCs Taylor and Frederick were driving along New Road and stopped the defendant; they spotted several beer cans in the car,” said Mrs Tench.


“He confirmed he had been drinking and after providing a positive roadside test he was arrested. When they asked him his name was he stated it was ‘Dave’ and when asked further about the name he told them: 'That’s all you need to know’.

“Checks showed he was banned until 2027. He has numerous previous convictions, many related to driving. He was convicted of drink driving in 2011, in 2016 he was convicted of driving while disqualified, he admitted drink driving again in 2021 and in September 2022 he committed offences of failing to provide and driving while disqualified.

“On that last occasion he was disqualified for 60 months and given a suspended sentence – he is in breach of that sentence. He committed these latest offences eight months into that five-year disqualification.”

The reading provided by Lowe at the roadside was 62 micrograms – the legal limit is 35 micrograms.  

Acting for Lowe, who gave his address as New Hall Farm, Smethcott, near Church Stretton, which is his place of work and where he occasionally stays, Rob Hanratty said: “All I can say is he has cooperated with probation. He was abiding by the rules of the previous order.

“He comes here realistically knowing he faces a prison sentence.

“On the day he had been working, he is very hard working, he is a dairyman who works in Church Stretton. He has two children, including a baby."

He added: “His little expedition has been a disaster all round – the baby didn’t get its milk, his partner’s car was seized by police and now his job and liberty are at risk.”

Probation officer Julian Davies said Lowe’s engagement since his September order has been “excellent”.

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After deliberating for some time, the bench returned to court to tell Lowe they were sending him to prison.

“Because of your previous offending and probation describing you as a high risk of reoffending, plus your attendance on the thinking skills programme, which you haven’t learnt from, we are going to activate the suspended sentence,” said chair Stephen Pembroke.

Magistrates ordered Lowe to serve a total sentence of 20 weeks. His previous suspended sentence of 18 weeks for failing to provide was activated but reduced to 12; and the 12 weeks for driving while disqualified was reduced to eight – these will be served concurrently.

He was handed a further eight weeks, reduced from 12 and to be served consecutively, for the most recent offences of driving while disqualified and drink driving, with no separate penalty for the no insurance matter.

He was told he will be banned from driving for an additional three years and 10 weeks and must pay a £154 surcharge on his release.