Hemel Hempstead fall victim spends three years battling for compensation, then gives it to charity

Helen Heenan.
Helen Heenan.

A woman who won £500 in compensation nearly three years after tripping over a broken pavement has now given the money to charity.

It took Helen Heenan 18 months to find out who was responsible for maintaining the area behind Hemel Hempstead’s Full House pub, where she fell over in June 2010.

She said: “It was a shock at the time – I was covered in bruising and cuts.”

The paving stones on the footpath between the town’s library and Market Square were eventually repaired after the owners of the walkway wrote to her in September 2011.

Hemel Hempstead MP Mike Penning had put pressure on them to help get a response for Helen, who lives in Larchwood Road, Adeyfield.

She then put in a personal injury claim with the help of town centre law firm Pictons Solicitors, who did not charge her a fee.

The property management company responsible for the land – GVA Grimley – passed her claim onto their insurers in December 2011.

But it was not until January this year that she was offered the £500 in compensation – and she did not receive it until April.

Helen has now decided to give the money to Hemel Hempstead charity Hope for Children, where she works as a volunteer.

She said: “Considering the help that I’ve had from people in the local community, it occurred to me that a local charity would be the most appropriate to benefit from this sum of money.

“Having seen the brilliant work that they do through volunteering with them over the years Hope was the obvious choice.”