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Willows Farm Village is sued over injury
The Bank of England's in-house physiotherapist has launched a massive compensation claim after breaking his back in a trampolining accident at a children's theme park.
Paul Edwards, 40, who tends to the niggles and aches of Sir Mervyn King and the other bankers who steer the nation's financial ship, as well as practicing in Chorleywood, suffered a fractured spine during a family visit to Willows Farm Village and Park, near St Albans, in May last year.
Mr Edwards, of Germain Street, Chesham, says he was attempting to bounce "normally" at the popular farm-themed leisure park and petting zoo when he struck his back, due to the trampoline being "positioned too close to the ground below it."
He is suing the owners of the attraction - Bowmans Farms Ltd, of Coursers Lane, London Colney - who advertise that visitors to their park will experience "acres of fun" - for a minimum of £300,000 in damages.
In a High Court writ, Mr Edwards, who runs his own physiotherapy clinic with his wife Nicky, as well as working for the Bank of England since 2008, says he was "using a trampoline which he was permitted to use and was using it in a normal manner" when he suffered the "serious injury" to his back.
The writ states that Mr Edwards had an annual membership to Willows Farm Village and that the accident happened during a family visit to the theme park on a Sunday.
"During a family visit to the premises, Mr Edwards was using a trampoline when, after jumping upwards and then landing on the stretched fabric of the trampoline, he struck the ground beneath the fabric and suffered a serious injury to his back," the writ says.
"His injuries were caused by negligence or breach of an implied term of the contract that the trampolining facilities would be safe for him to use," it is alleged.
Mr Edwards also claims that staff at the theme park had "positioned the trampoline on a slope...so that it was too close to the ground below it, failed to place the trampoline on level ground (and) failed to ensure that there was sufficient distance between the stretched fabric component of the trampoline and the ground below it."
The writ states that, as a result of the accident, Mr Edwards suffered "a serious injury to his back including a wedge compression fracture of the 12th thoracic vertebra" for which he is seeking "a lump sum award of damages".
In their defence to the action, Tanja Neuhof, for Bowmans Farms Ltd, says that they "admit primary liability" for Mr Edwards' accident, but "reserve the right to allege contributory negligence against him".
Miss Neuhof adds that "no admissions are made as to the injury suffered by Mr Edwards as a result of the accident" and that "no admissions are made as to the cause or causes of his current medical complaints".