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Pensioner wins damages for fall in Crowborough Lidl

By Sussex Courier  |  Posted: January 25, 2013

By Andy Saunders andy.saunders@courier.co.uk

  • £8,000 PAYOUT: Jennifer Mill tripped over a box in Lidl TWAH20130123A-001_C

  • £8,000 PAYOUT: Jennifer Mills, of Park Road in Forest Row, who has been awarded £8,000 in damages after she was severely injured in a fall at Lidl in Crowborough, where she tripped over a box, fell on a glass bottle she was holding and disclocated her shoulder. She is pictured in the sitting-room of her home on Wednesday morning TWAH20130123A-005_C.jpg

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BOSSES of a Crowborough supermarket will have to fork out thousands of pounds in compensation to a pensioner left lying in agony after falling over a discarded box.

Jennifer Mills, 72, complained to Lidl that she fell over a large box left lying in an aisle and landed on a glass bottle she was carrying.

The former head teacher said she was left covered in blood and with a dislocated shoulder following the fall, and now struggles with everyday tasks because of her injuries.

The incident happened in September 2010 when Mrs Mills and her husband Robert, from Forest Row, were shopping in the Beacon Road store.

She said: "I fell with such force I knew straight away I had seriously hurt my shoulder.

"After almost an hour lying on the floor, my husband finally managed to get a chair from the store and he managed to lift me up, before the paramedics arrived to take me to hospital.

"My injuries took many months to heal, and more than two years on I have been left without full movement of my shoulder. I also don't have the strength in my right hand that I used to have and find I cannot manage simple tasks such as opening jars any more, which is very frustrating.

"My injuries could so easily have been avoided if the store had taken more care and put customer safety first."

She was treated at the Princess Royal Hospital in Haywards Heath for the injuries.

Amid anger not enough had been done to protect public safety, Mrs Mills turned to injury law firm Irwin Mitchell.

After contact between solicitors and Lidl, the discount supermarket agreed to settle out of court for more than £8,000.

Solicitor Sophie Davies said: "Supermarkets, shops and other public places have a fundamental duty to ensure they are providing a safe environment for the people who use them.

"Lidl accepted liability for Mrs Mills injuries and we have repeatedly called for a focus on safety and will continue to do so to help prevent further accidents such as this in future."

But Mrs Mills added: "Unfortunately it does not seem that I have made much difference as I still see boxes lying around when I have been in Lidl."

Lidl refused to comment on Mrs Mills' case.

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