Teacher who slipped in ‘puddle’ on dance floor at wedding venue sues for £ 150,000
Special needs teacher Cara Donovan, 35, from Romford, Essex, fell and smashed her elbow on the dance floor at Leez Priory – which has been repeatedly voted the UK’s best wedding venue
Image: Champions News)
A teacher in agony after breaking her elbow on the ‘slippery’ dance floor of a wedding venue sued the company hosting the event for £ 150,000.
Cara Donovan, 35, was a guest at a wedding at the Leez Priory of Country House Weddings Ltd, a 16th-century Tudor mansion near Chelmsford, Essex.
The mansion, nestled in 40 acres of grounds, has been repeatedly voted the UK’s best wedding venue.
The special needs teacher is now suing the receiving company for £ 150,000 after slipping and breaking her elbow on their state-of-the-art ‘sparkling dance floor’ in September 2018.
The 35-year-old’s elbow was badly broken and she was left with constant arm pain – which still impacts all areas of her daily life.
Despite three surgeries, Cara’s arm says she is still in agony and has not been able to return to teaching at school.
Country House Weddings Ltd, owner of Leez Priory, was told by suppliers of the high-tech dance floor that there would be a risk of slipping if drinks were spilled on it, according to documents filed with the Haute Court.
But nothing was done to prevent guests from taking cash on the dance floor, and the company’s ads even showed pictures of people drinking and dancing, Cara’s lawyers say.
“During the evening, guests would go out on the dance floor – either to cross it or to dance – holding glasses of drink and occasionally spilling drink on the dance floor,” says his lawyer, Philip Goddard.
“The dance floor got wet with spilled drink stains.
“The lights in the basement of the dance floor made it difficult for people on the dance floor to see the liquid spilled on the surface.
“At around 10 p.m., the claimant went to the floor to dance. She slipped into the spilled drink, fell and broke her dominant right arm.”
Doctors performed three surgeries on Cara’s broken arm, but none cured her permanent pain and weakness, the lawyer says.
The mother-of-two, from Romford, cannot write, drive, use a keyboard or operate machines with two hands after her injury.
“She would like to resume teaching, but is inhibited by the injury,” says Goddard.
“A fourth operation may be needed to remove a bone fragment, but her current condition is unlikely to improve.”
Cara blames Country House Weddings Ltd for her injury and the impact it had on her life.
She claims the company failed to heed the supplier’s “no drink” warning and failed to enforce it by placing staff in appropriate locations around the venue.
Tables were also placed at the edge of the dance floor, which Cara said encouraged people to drink and dance.
Staff also failed to move guests around to mop up spilled drinks, it is said.
Country House Weddings Ltd’s defense was not available in court.
Cara’s claim has yet to be tested as evidence by a judge.
The defense against Country House Weddings Ltd’s action was not available in court and the contents of Ms Donovan’s claim have yet to be tested as evidence by a judge.