You might think that making personal injury claims is a new thing and something which our ancestors would not have had the good fortune to be able to do. You might think our great grandfathers would just have had to suffer in silence, but you might be wrong!
Looking back through their archives, Aviva have found cases of strange and unusual cases of personal injury claims being made, most of which would not even make it past the starting gate today. However, it is interesting to look back and see how our ancestors dealt with personal injury and how different things are today. Here are eight of the best that Aviva found:
- In Lancashire, a greengrocer was playing Blind Man’s Buff with his friends when he slipped and hurt himself. He was paid a total of £15 in compensation back in 1878, the equivalent of around £700 in modern money.
- In 1904, a travelling salesman who was on his way to Belfast witnessed an accident just in front of the tram he was on. As he was craning to see what was happening he hit his head on a pole and claimed £7 in compensation, the equivalent of £400 today.
- Back in 1892 it was more common to throw rice at a wedding than confetti and a merchant from Essex was indulging in this time honoured tradition when a grain of rice hit him in the eye, causing serious injury. The man was paid £50 in compensation, which is worth around £3,000 today.
- In one of the biggest ancient personal injury claims payouts, at the seaside resort of Great Yarmouth in 1900, a shipbuilder swallowed a bone that was in his fish supper. The records do not clarify the severity of his injury, but it must have been pretty bad as he managed to claim £1,000 in compensation, an amount that would be worth around £57,000 today!
- In 1886 an artist who lived in Swansea was caught off guard and knocked over by a sudden gust of wind. He managed to claim £30 in compensation, which would work out to just under £2,000 today.
- A Dublin pharmacist was enjoying a relaxing afternoon at the Turkish Baths when he slipped on the damp marble steps and injured himself. He claimed the equivalent of just over £1,500, which in 1885 was just £33.
- In the Midlands, an innkeeper in Birmingham was having trouble sleeping, and so decided to take a swig of his sleeping medicine. Unfortunately he grabbed the wrong bottle and instead took a slug of a highly poisonous potion. He managed to claim over £1,000 in personal injury claims compensation, around £48,000 in today’s money.
- Finally, over the northern border in Scotland, a merchant in Glasgow hurt himself severely as he leapt out of bed to catch his wife, who had apparently fainted. This chivalrous act paid dividends, as the romantic hero managed to submit personal injury claims to a total of £42 in compensation, an amount that would equate to over £2,500 today.