A CHURCH organist from Dollar has been banned from driving after getting behind the wheel while more than double the legal limit.

Antony Baldwin committed the offence last month and appeared at Alloa Sheriff Court last Thursday, September 12, where he pleaded guilty to it.

Susannah Hutchison, depute fiscal, told the court that on August 19, at around 8.15pm, officers were asked to report to Bridge Street, Dollar, after members of the public observed Baldwin buying drink while already smelling strongly of alcohol.

He was then seen getting into his car by the witnesses who called police.

Officers then traced the accused at this home address and were told by him that he had had two glasses of wine before driving.

The 62-year-old, who was representing himself, told the court that his only exception with the narrative was that he actually drank three glasses of wine, not two, and that they were with an evening meal.

He said: “Normally I would walk to the shop, but because of intermittent back pain, I decided to jump in the car, thinking because I had had a meal I would be fine.”

He then told the court that he was a “professional organist and choir trainer” all over the Forth Valley including Falkirk and Stirling.

He is currently the church organist for St Ninian’s Old Parish Church in Stirling.

After telling the court his income and financial situation, Sheriff David Mackie fined Baldwin, of West Burnside, the sum of £650, reduced from £1,000.

He was also banned from driving for a period of 12 months, which will be reduced to nine if he successfully completes a driver’s rehabilitation course.