A BANNED Kendal driver hit 50mph in the town centre and ran a red light during a night-time police chase.

Jordan Alan McQuinn, 22, was spotted by two PCs on Blackhall Road at 9.25pm on June 10, behind the wheel of a Honda Civic. He had bought that vehicle despite being disqualified and never having held a licence.

Carlisle Crown Court heard McQuinn, of Echo Barn Hill, accelerated away from police with blue lights activated, on to Sandes Avenue and eventually on to Windermere Road. He took a traffic island on the wrong side of the road and went through a red light.

Prosecutor Peter Barr said: "It was estimated he was driving about 50mph in the town centre."

Police gave up the chase but McQuinn was later detained. He admitted dangerous driving, driving while disqualified, failing to stop for a PC, having no insurance and driving otherwise than in accordance with a licence.

At the time he was subject to a previous court community order, and on bail in relation to another matter.

Sarah Magill, defending, said McQuinn had described 32 days in prison on remand as a "shocking experience" which had given him time to reflect on his wrongdoing.

"He understands that he placed the police and other road users at risk," said Ms Magill. "There was no injury or damage - he understands what he did could have caused those things to happen."

She added: "He is truly sorry. He says he just panicked when he saw the police. He shouldn't have been driving at all."

Judge James Adkin noted a probation sentence report made for "pretty depressing reading", describing McQuinn as "unmotivated" and "having poor engagement".

"It seems to me if I was to pass a suspended (jail) sentence or a community order I would be setting you up to fail," said the judge.

"At the moment you are a young man who is perfectly prepared to engage in risky behaviour. You have a poor history of compliance bearing in mind the lack of work you have done on your current (community) order."

Judge Adkin jailed McQuinn for eight months. He was banned from driving for a year, and must pass an extended test.