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Man gets €240k after losing eye on golf course

a teenager who lost an eye after being struck by a ball on a golf course has been awarded more than €240,000 after taking a High Court action.

Dean Boyle (22), from Moneymore, Drogheda, Co Louth, was 15 when he went with a teenage friend to play at Julianstown golf course, Co Meath on August 13, 2007.

As a result of the accident, at the second hole, he had to have his left eye removed and a prosthetic eye inserted.

Accident

In the personal injuries claim, it was said that Mr Boyle was struck by the ball as a result of a failure to ensure there was "a safe approach to the second tee for players walking from the first green".

It was also claimed there was a large hedge that forced players to access and leave the tee box "from in front of where players teeing are playing from".

Mr Boyle had taken his shot and was returning to his golf bag when his friend teed off and he was struck by the ball.

As a result of the accident, he was taken to A&E at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda, where he was seen by doctors and referred to Temple Street Children's Hospital.

He was taken there by ambulance and seen by Professor Michael O'Keeffe.

Mr Boyle had his eye removed and a prosthetic eye was put in in November 2007.

He has had further surgery since.

The court heard he has difficulty sleeping, has been depressed, suffered a loss of self-esteem and has become very self-conscious.

He suffers from headaches and finds it difficult to concentrate.

Formerly a keen sports player, he was unable to continue playing contact sports, it was claimed.

The case was taken against Mr Brian Foley, a nominee of Zurich Insurance as Mr Matt Berrill, trading as Julianstown golf course and pitch and putt, is deceased.

Yesterday Judge Brian Creggan was told by Mr Turlough O'Donnell, SC, instructed by Mr Sean T O'Reilly, for Mr Boyle, that both parties had agreed to an order being made in the sum of €275,000 with 10pc deducted, which resulted in a balance of €247,500.

Judge Creggan found that there was contributory negligence of 10pc.

The court heard €100,000 is to be paid out immediately and a stay will be put on the balance in the event that an appeal is lodged. It is understood that the defendant may appeal the issue of liability.

Physiologically

Judge Cregan told Mr Boyle that he had no doubt he had suffered "both physically and physiologically".

Judge Cregan told him he had no doubt it had effected "your confidence and self-esteem" and no award of the court could compensate him for that.

"You were well served by your legal team," he said.

The action was heard for three days at the High court sitting in Dundalk this week.

hnews@herald.ie


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