A 43-YEAR-OLD man was given a 12-month community order for failing to supply a specimen of blood and not reporting to court when required.

Nick Cherrington, of no fixed abode, was asked to supply a blood specimen after crashing into a lamppost on the A34 near Sutton Scotney.

He had earlier taken a breathalyser test, which he passed, but his solicitor said the defendant was “confused” by both the accident and being asked to supply the blood test having already passed the breathalyser test.

He was charged with failing to give a reasonable excuse for not providing a blood specimen and required to appear at Basingstoke Magistrates Court on January 2 – something he did not do.

This week the court heard that the Mr Cherrington had thought we was supposed to go before magistrates on January 22, rather than January 2.

However his solicitor argued that upon finding out his error, his client had attended court at the earliest possible opportunity.

“He’s done everything he can to correct the breach,” he said.

“It was an oversight on his part but given his lifestyle it’s understandable in the circumstances.”

The court heard how Mr Cherrington is currently homeless, sometimes relying on “sofa surfing” but often left “out on the streets” after falling into difficult circumstances.

He works as a landscape gardener but has seen work dry up in recent weeks due to the bad weather, leaving him with no income as he has not applied for benefits.

His solicitor added that he was living “by the generosity of friends and the foodbank at the moment”.

Magistrates sentenced Mr Cherrington to a 12-month community order, with a requirement to attend 15 Rehabilitation Activity Requirement (RAR) days.

He was also made to pay a £90 victim surcharge and £40 in costs, taking the total bill to £130.