A Newcastle woman who was left paralysed after emulating Mary Poppins has had her claim for compensation rejected after a judge ruled that she was the ‘author of her own misfortune.’
Ruth Geary was enjoying a drink with colleagues from the Pfizer pharmaceutical company at the Union Rooms in Newcastle, owned by the JD Wetherspoon chain, in March 2007.
At one point a companion of Mrs Geary slid down the upper part of the pub’s 19th century banister and the claimant decided that she would do the same, in the manner of Julie Andrews’ character in the 1964 Disney classic.
Unfortunately, she fell three and a half metres on to the restaurant’s marble floor and was rendered tetraplegic by the resulting injuries.
She sought millions of pounds in a personal injury compensation claim against Wetherspoons on the grounds that the banister railing was dangerously low, 20cm below ‘recommended height.’
However Mrs Geary’s claim was rejected after a two day hearing at Newcastle’s High Court. Mr Justice Coulston said:
“The claimant freely chose to do something which she knew was dangerous,” reports the Northern Echo.
“Because of the conversations about Mary Poppins, there was even a degree of pre-planning.”
Source: Chronicle Live
Date Published: June 22, 2011
Author: David Brown