Gran’s path fall agony in Bawtry

Nuala Dodds, aged 65, of Beckingham, suffered extensive facial bruising after falling outside the Crown Hotel, High Street, Bawtry, because of a missing pavement stone.
Nuala Dodds, aged 65, of Beckingham, suffered extensive facial bruising after falling outside the Crown Hotel, High Street, Bawtry, because of a missing pavement stone.
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These are the horrifying facial injuries suffered by a Doncaster grandmother after she fell on an uneven pavement.

Nuala Dodds was walking along Bawtry High Street when she tripped over a missing flag. The 65-year-old was disgusted when she discovered nobody was taking responsibility for keeping the pavements safe.

She said: “I was walking past the Bawtry Hotel when I tripped because of a missing piece in the pavement, which had left a whole about three inches deep.

“I fell quite badly. Lots of people saw what happened and came over to help me back up.

“If it’s not fixed then it’s going to happen again, possibly to somebody who will hurt themselves even more than I did. It’s very dangerous.”

The mother-of-two suffered bruising to the left hand side of her face, including to her eye lid, nose and cheek, in the fall earlier this month.

“It’s only just starting healing now,” she said.

“I also hurt my hip when I fell. I have arthritis and this really hasn’t helped with that.”

Mrs Dodds, of Timson Court, Beckingham, said there were other areas of the pavement which were damaged.

After her accident, she spoke to local business owners who told her it was not the first incident of this kind.

She said: “I was shocked when I found out it had happened before. Why has nothing been done to fix the pavement and prevent anybody else from getting hurt?”

The grandmother-of-one said she spoke to the Crown Hotel, Bawtry Town Council and the highways department of Doncaster Council, but all denied responsibility for fixing the damage.

Mrs Dodds said: “It is difficult to believe that a pavement being constantly used by the public in a busy town centre can be nobody’s responsibility to keep safe.”

In an e-mail sent to Mrs Dodds, a spokesman for the borough council’s highways department, said: “We have previously had two claims submitted to Doncaster Council for incidents in the area in question. “I can confirm that on both occasions we referred the claims to Bawtry Town Council, and they advised that all frontages along the length of the businesses from Dower House Square corner along to Cooplands are the sole responsibility of the owners.”

In a statement to The Star, borough council spokesman Dave Wilkinson added: “This is currently an unadopted highway and we are in the process of investigating where responsibility for the maintenance lies.”

Jennifer Worthington, clerk for Bawtry Town Council, said: “It’s the responsibility of the individual shop owners to fix the pavement. Some of the owners are very good.

“It is definitely something that concerns us. We’ve had meetings with Doncaster Council’s highways department, and we are awaiting feedback from them. The issue is on-going.”

The Crown Hotel was contacted and did not provide a comment.