‘Gate nearly killed my son’ says upset mum

The iron gate at Williamson Park which narrowly missed crushing six-year-old Owen Parker.
The iron gate at Williamson Park which narrowly missed crushing six-year-old Owen Parker.

A mum says her son could have been crushed to death under a heavy iron gate which fell on him as he played in Williamson Park in Lancaster.

Claire Parker’s son Owen Parker, aged six, a pupil at Westgate Primary School, jumped out of the way as the gate toppled over but it clipped his knee, causing bruising and a possible fracture.

Six-year-old Owen Parker with the temporary cast on his leg, which was injured after a gate fell on him at Williamson Park in Lancaster.

Six-year-old Owen Parker with the temporary cast on his leg, which was injured after a gate fell on him at Williamson Park in Lancaster.

Claire, 33, of Westgate, said: ““It was a concrete floor so if the gate had fallen on him it could have been fatal.

“Luckily his three-year-old brother Ethan wasn’t with him at the time, as he would not have been able to jump out of the way.

“Owen was with my father-in-law Andrew Parker and they were near the butterfly house when the entire gate, which is 5ft by 5ft, fell.

“It clipped his knee, cut it and badly bruised it. The gate was that heavy my father-in-law couldn’t lift it.

“We took him to hospital and we spent five hours in A and E and they put a temporary cast on which they changed for bandaging.

“I had to keep him off school on Monday because he can’t use crutches. He has gone back to school but needs extra help from the teachers.

“My husband Gareth is less than impressed with what has happened.

“The incident had to be recorded in a book at the park and I have also contacted the park manager who couldn’t even get my name right.

“The response I got was not adequate. It has been an ordeal for Owen and us.”

Coun David Smith, Cabinet member with responsibility for Environmental Services, said: “We’d like to send our best wishes to Owen and can reassure his family that an internal investigation has been launched to thoroughly scrutinise this incident.

“The city council takes the health and safety of visitors to all its public parks very seriously and it is important that we determine the cause and if there are any lessons that we can learn for the future.

“We will keep in close contact with Owen’s family to ensure they are kept up to date with progress on our investigation and any action that is taken.”