A PENSIONER suffered a serious head injury after tripping on a loose paving stone on Age Awareness Day.
And the plight of Jean Barrington has now triggered a demand for extensive footpath repairs throughout Hyndburn.
Mrs Barrington, 67, of Station Road, Huncoat, was on her way to take part in a yoga demonstration at Hyndburn Age Concern when she crashed to the ground outside Accrington Town Hall.
She said: “I heard the flag stone wobble but I couldn’t get myself off it quick enough. Then my other foot hit the pavement where it dipped down and the next thing I knew I was in hospital.”
Suspicions that she had fractured her skull proved unfounded but she suffered cracked ribs, internal bleeding and severe bruising.
She added: “I couldn’t leave the house for nearly two weeks as the swelling and bruising to my face was so severe. I am still bruised now and doctors think I will need many more weeks to recover because the fall caused some soft tissue damage near my eye.”
At Wednesday’s meeting of Hyndburn Council, her ward councillor, Dave Parkins, demanded action.
He asked council leader Peter Britcliffe to write a letter to Lancashire County Council demanding a full survey be carried out on all Hyndburn’s footpaths and necessary improvements carried out on a regular basis.
He said: “This is not the only dangerous area in the borough. Something needs to be done as loose flags are around every corner.”
Councillor Britcliffe said: “It is really annoying when we get letters of complaint about the state of the footpaths when the body in charge is Lancashire County Council.
“This is a serious problem and Mrs Barrington is by no means the first victim.
“Last year the whole budget for footpath repairs was spent on surfacing Whinney Hill Road so that the county council could dump its rubbish in Hyndburn.”
The loose flagstone on which Mrs Barrington tripped was repaired within the hour.
But Councillor Parkins said this was not enough. He added: “We need to inspect our footpaths regularly to prevent this sort of thing happening.
“I am sure that if we looked at the county’s insurance claims we would see that prevention is cheaper than cure and compensation.”