SCHOOLCHILDREN who lost playground fights, slipped on grass, and fell over whilst skiing were paid thousands of pounds in compensation payouts, it can be revealed.
More than £800,000 was paid out by Blackburn with Darwen and Lancashire County councils over the past five years, figures released under the Freedom of Information Act revealed.
It has led to calls for a change in the law that would ban the councils from being held responsible for children’s accidents.
The figure includes £30,000 paid to a Blackburn pupil who was injured in a PE lesson, while £17,500 has been reserved for a possible pay-out for a child who got their fingers caught in a door.
Other payouts include £14,450 for a child who fell over whilst skiing on a school trip.
Blackburn with Darwen Council, which is set to pay out £97,508 over the past five years, wouldn’t say which schools the children attended.
That was or fear of identifying them, or whether fees were negotiated, or paid out of court. And Lancashire County Council paid £80,000 to 14 claimants last year, bringing its five year total to £723,923.
Recent claims include £9,000 paid to a child who lost a tooth in a playground fight, and £4,585 to one who fell over on grass and cut his knee on a gate.a Haslingden and Hyndburn MP Graham Jones, inset, has blamed the ‘compo culture’ for the pay-outs, and he said that the councils should be exempt from claims, which can take years to settle.
The Labour MP said: “Over the years, schools have been reluctant to get involved with doing activities for kids because of people out there just looking for compensation”
Blackburn with Darwen Council’s executive member for resources, added: “The council holds public liability insurance for incidents causing damage or injury to members of the public.
“When it is felt that there is no legal liability on the council we will vigorously defend the claim.”