Woman of 74 falls on moss

Swindon Advertiser: Nicholas Woodhouse at the area of moss where his wife Diana fell Nicholas Woodhouse at the area of moss where his wife Diana fell

PENSIONER Diana Woodhouse has been told she may never walk her dog again after she slipped and fell on a mossy footpath in Blunsdon last week.

The 74-year-old was walking her dog with husband Nicholas Woodhouse, 71, near the Sams Lane and High Street junction last Thursday when the neglected surface caused her to lose balance.

Swindon Advertiser:

Diana, above, was taken to Great Western Hospital by ambulance after Nicholas made an emergency call.

Staff found she had broken her femur as a result of the fall.

She was in theatre for five hours on Valentine’s Day as surgeons fought to repair her leg and fitted her with a steel rod from the hip to her knee.

While Diana continues to recover in hospital, husband Nicholas has been looking for answers as to how this came to happen and why the footpath had been allowed to become so overrun by moss.

He is also trying to come to terms with the fact his wife and companion may never share a dog walk with him again.

The former newsagent, of Churchill Avenue in Blunsdon, said: “We had the dog with us and we were trying to get a walk in between showers.

“I was walking behind her when she fell on to her left side. She immediately cried out with pain.

“I saw a surgeon after her operation and he told me it was a very serious procedure and he was doubtful she would be able to do the things she was doing before.

“I can’t come to terms with it. It’s really shocking.

“I blame Swindon Council. That path was an accident waiting to happen. Many residents around here say it’s dangerous to walk on.

“Some of them won’t even walk around there.”

Nicholas said the ground had been wet at the time from the rain, but remains adamant the depth of moss present on the footpath is beyond acceptable.

The chairman of Blunsdon Parish Council, Ian Jankinson, himself walked up the same footpath on Saturday and felt the path did not present an immediate hazard to residents.

However he did encourage Swindon Council to take note and assess the footpath as soon as possible.

He said: “We have a part-time groundsman who walks around the village and makes us aware of any hazards which need addressing by the borough council.

“Normally, whenever there are any overhanging bushes or problems with highways the borough council are very good at dealing with them quickly.

“This particular path is mossy, but most paths are mossy at this time of the year, especially with the terrible weather we’ve been having.

“If you are frail that path might be a problem but we walked up it quite easily.

“Not immediately, but we would ask for the council to have a look at it.”

A Swindon Council spokesman said: “All the pavements in our several thousand kilometre network are inspected either once a year or twice a year, depending on their type and location.

“The pavement in question was last inspected in November. No defects relating to moss were noted, and we have no record of any complaint about its condition being made to us.”

Comments (4)

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9:49am Tue 18 Feb 14

CocoaClown says...

Whilst this is unfortunate for Mr and Mrs Woodhouse, and I wish Mrs Woodhouse a full and speedy recovery, I don't think you can blame the Council for bad weather and the effects of it. Yes, perhaps it can be cleared, but they can't inspect every path in every part of town weekly to ensure they are clear. There is a path near us which is covered in dead leaves which have been trodden down and with all the rain it is now extremely slippery. I wound't expect the Council to come and clear that. It's just part of nature and as a result you either avoid it or take extra precaution when using it.

As slack as the Council can be sometimes, I have reported a few issues relating to overgrown bushes on footpaths, dog mess around schools and broken glass in play areas and they have always been fairly quick to resolve the issues. I'm sure if this was reported as an issue they would have checked it out.
Whilst this is unfortunate for Mr and Mrs Woodhouse, and I wish Mrs Woodhouse a full and speedy recovery, I don't think you can blame the Council for bad weather and the effects of it. Yes, perhaps it can be cleared, but they can't inspect every path in every part of town weekly to ensure they are clear. There is a path near us which is covered in dead leaves which have been trodden down and with all the rain it is now extremely slippery. I wound't expect the Council to come and clear that. It's just part of nature and as a result you either avoid it or take extra precaution when using it. As slack as the Council can be sometimes, I have reported a few issues relating to overgrown bushes on footpaths, dog mess around schools and broken glass in play areas and they have always been fairly quick to resolve the issues. I'm sure if this was reported as an issue they would have checked it out. CocoaClown

12:26pm Tue 18 Feb 14

peter moor says...

Get well soon,in the mean time can her sister barbera walk it?
Get well soon,in the mean time can her sister barbera walk it? peter moor

1:58pm Tue 18 Feb 14

house on the hill says...

CocoaClown wrote:
Whilst this is unfortunate for Mr and Mrs Woodhouse, and I wish Mrs Woodhouse a full and speedy recovery, I don't think you can blame the Council for bad weather and the effects of it. Yes, perhaps it can be cleared, but they can't inspect every path in every part of town weekly to ensure they are clear. There is a path near us which is covered in dead leaves which have been trodden down and with all the rain it is now extremely slippery. I wound't expect the Council to come and clear that. It's just part of nature and as a result you either avoid it or take extra precaution when using it.

As slack as the Council can be sometimes, I have reported a few issues relating to overgrown bushes on footpaths, dog mess around schools and broken glass in play areas and they have always been fairly quick to resolve the issues. I'm sure if this was reported as an issue they would have checked it out.
A very good common sense response.
[quote][p][bold]CocoaClown[/bold] wrote: Whilst this is unfortunate for Mr and Mrs Woodhouse, and I wish Mrs Woodhouse a full and speedy recovery, I don't think you can blame the Council for bad weather and the effects of it. Yes, perhaps it can be cleared, but they can't inspect every path in every part of town weekly to ensure they are clear. There is a path near us which is covered in dead leaves which have been trodden down and with all the rain it is now extremely slippery. I wound't expect the Council to come and clear that. It's just part of nature and as a result you either avoid it or take extra precaution when using it. As slack as the Council can be sometimes, I have reported a few issues relating to overgrown bushes on footpaths, dog mess around schools and broken glass in play areas and they have always been fairly quick to resolve the issues. I'm sure if this was reported as an issue they would have checked it out.[/p][/quote]A very good common sense response. house on the hill

2:31pm Tue 18 Feb 14

Always Grumpy says...

I wonder if the groundsman emplyed by the parish council walks around the entire parish inspecting the paths, or just Blunsdon village, in order to satisfy the requirements of the selfish residents of the village?
I wonder if the groundsman emplyed by the parish council walks around the entire parish inspecting the paths, or just Blunsdon village, in order to satisfy the requirements of the selfish residents of the village? Always Grumpy

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