Woman 'who fell over ornamental lion' sues luxury hotel in High Court
A WOMAN who claims she fell over an ornamental lion on a pathway of a luxury hotel as she left a wedding reception has sued in the High Court.
Civil servant Joyce Mills (45) suffered a fracture to her lower leg, is left with scarring, and was 11 weeks off work after the accident as she left the Cabra Castle Hotel, Kingscourt, Co Cavan, the court heard.
Opening her case, Pat O'Connell SC said she had been staying the courtyard area of the hotel and was returning to her accommodation with her partner and friends after the wedding reception when the accident happened.
Ms Mills,of The Oaks, Clonshaugh Woods, Dublin, fell over the black ornamental lion as she could not see it. She suffered a significant injury to her left lower leg, counsel said.
A fellow guest at the wedding who was a doctor advised she should not be moved and she had to wait an hour and a half for an ambulance.
Counsel said Ms Mills had to have surgery the next day and was in hospital until October 26, 2011 when she was discharged with a cast on her leg and on crutches.
He said when Ms Mills returned to work 11 weeks later, she still had to use one crutch.
She has been left with scarring, and had worn high heels all her life but can't do it any more, he said.
An issue in the case, counsel said, will be the position of the decorative lion, which was 22inches high, on the night of the accident.
He said a photograph taken the night after the accident showed the location of the lion.
A photograph put up on on Trip Advisor by a hotel client recommending the hotel also showed the lion in a similar position as to when Ms Mills fell and not against a wall as contended by the hotel side.
Ms Mills has sued Kingscourt Castle ltd trading as Cabra Castle Hotel as a result of the fall on October 23, 2011.
She has claimed a dangerous tripping hazard was allegedly created and there was an alleged failure to have any or any adequate lighting around the statue.
The hotel denies the claims and contends there was contributory negligence on her behalf and that she allegedly failed to look where she was walking.
The case continues.