Cambridgeshire fairground workers to be sentenced for causing death of girl, 7, by gross negligence

Two married fairground workers from Cambridgeshire who failed to adequately anchor a bouncy castle that blew away with a little girl inside it will be sentenced for her gross negligence manslaughter.

Friday, 15th June 2018, 11:07 am
Updated Tuesday, 19th June 2018, 4:50 pm
William Thurston and Shelby Thurston
William Thurston and Shelby Thurston

Seven-year-old Summer Grant died after a gust of wind lifted the inflatable from its moorings and sent it "cartwheeling" 300 metres down a hill at an Easter fair in Harlow, Essex, an earlier trial at Chelmsford Crown Court heard.

William Thurston, 29, and Shelby Thurston, 26, were both found guilty of manslaughter by gross negligence.

The couple, of Whitecross Road, Wilburton, Cambridgeshire, were also found guilty of a health and safety offence following the incident on March 26 2016.

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Summer Grant

Prosecutors said the defendants failed to ensure that the bouncy castle was "adequately anchored" to the ground and failed to monitor weather conditions to ensure it was safe to use.

A yellow Met Office weather warning was in place on the day of the incident, two days before Storm Katie was due to arrive.

Summer's father Lee Grant told the trial he turned to see the bouncy castle in the air after he heard a scream, and said "my daughter's in there".

He said he gave chase but could not catch the inflatable.

Summer was rescued from within the bouncy castle and taken to hospital where she died from her injuries.

The Thurstons are listed to be sentenced at Chelmsford Crown Court today, Friday June 15.