Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 21°C

min temp: 12°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Worlingworth: Family of Matthew Skeet claim court fines ‘undermine the severity of what happened’ the day their son was killed when a wall collapsed at a building site

09:00 22 March 2014

Bethany, Linda and David Skeet wore red to Ipswich Crown Court on Friday, 14 February to signify their broken hearts while hearing the verdict of Matthew Skeet

Bethany, Linda and David Skeet wore red to Ipswich Crown Court on Friday, 14 February to signify their broken hearts while hearing the verdict of Matthew Skeet's death in 2010.

The family of a teenage labourer who was killed on a Suffolk building site have appealed for an MP’s support in their quest for justice.

shares
Matthew Skeet, from MeltonMatthew Skeet, from Melton

Linda and David Skeet were left “disgusted” with the justice system and believe a criminal hearing into safety failings on the Worlingworth site where their son was killed by a falling wall failed to provide the closure they hoped for. Site owner Elliston Steady & Hawes and Barry Potts, a structural engineer, admitted to criminal breaches on the site prior to the death of Matthew Skeet and his employer Kevin Ruffles in October 2010. They were ordered to pay a total of £80,000 as punishment for their failings at Ipswich Crown Court on February 14.

Although Mr Justice Rabinder Singh stressed the failings were not directly attributed to the mens’ deaths, the Skeets were left feeling let down by the law.

“My son was the innocent party in all of this and yet he was wiped off the face of the earth without anyone being held full accountable,” said Mrs Skeet. “I won’t rest until I feel justice has been done.”

In a letter calling for the support of Dan Poulter, MP for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich, Mr and Mrs Skeet, from Woodbridge, wrote: “It has absolutely disgusted us that the fines imposed by the Crown Court totally undermine the severity of what happened and the pain, loss and suffering as a consequence.

Matthew Skeet, from Melton, was killed by a falling barn wall in Worlingworth in October 2010.Matthew Skeet, from Melton, was killed by a falling barn wall in Worlingworth in October 2010.

“In our mind this was not considered a punishment.”

The letter highlights the family’s frustration at providing detailed evidence and statements to the Crown Prosecution Service only to be “sidelined” when the decision was taken to drop the manslaughter charges.

Further concerns are raised about the Fatality Act, which prevents claims for compensation when a person over the age of 18 dies with no dependents. Though they stress “money does not replace a life nor ease the pain and suffering” Mr and Mrs Skeet claim the law as it stands seems to suggest that “one person’s life is worth more than another”.

The family believe that others in their situation are also concerned about how deaths in the workplace are treated and have called upon Dr Poulter to pursue changes to the law, citing the Dangerous Dogs Act as an example legislation has been instigated in response to a number of deaths.

“As a family we cannot rest or acept the conclusion of our case as it stands - and no doubt there are many other families with the same views and feel os helpless about the law as it stands.”

Mrs Skeet is also keen to hear from other bereaved families to join their campaign. Contact her on 01394 386842.

shares

0 comments

Avro Vulcan XH558 at the Clacton Air Show.

The eyes of Britain were on Clacton yesterday as it hosted the first major air show since last weekend’s Shoreham disaster – and organisers hailed the first day of the event as a huge success.

Vulcan makes last trip over Suffolk at RAF Lakenheath.

Today (August 27) marked the last time the iconic Avro Vulcan bomber flew through Suffolk.

Ex-teacher convicted of abusing child

A former remedial school teacher from Suffolk and long-term partner of one of the founders of the Paedophile Information Exchange has been found guilty of molesting an 11-year-old boy, it can be revealed.

Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service was called out to a car blaze.

Firefighters were called out to a car blaze in Ipswich tonight.

Police have closed the road.

Police, fire and ambulance crews attended the scene of a three-vehicle crash on the Barnby bends in Beccles.

Large crowds at the Clacton Air Show.

Thousands of fans have flocked to the Essex coast today to take in the sights and sounds of the Clacton Airshow.

Leiston Film Theatre Assistant Manager Hannah Everett and General Manager Wayne Burns have their martinis ready now that they are able to screen the new James Bond movie the same day as the world wide release.

As the stars of the new James Bond movie tread the red carpet and settle in their seats to enjoy the world premiere, film fans in a Suffolk town will be watching all the action, too.

Police are investigating the incident

Police are investigating after a suspicious vehicle was seen in a field in Coney Weston this morning.

Hollesley Bay

Serious questions are being asked about why a prolific burglar, who had been jailed for four-and-a-half years, was moved to the “soft option” of a Suffolk open prison just months into his sentence.

Police are investigating the incident

Police have issued a CCTV image of a man they are looking to trace following a sexual assault in Haverhill.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages