Woman who claims she slipped on petals from a bridal bouquet settles case

Ann White from Clonmel said she suffered ‘massive skid’ on flower petals on dance floor

A woman who claimed she slipped on petals on a hotel dance floor two hours after the bride threw her bouquet at a wedding reception has settled her High Court action on confidential terms.

Mr Justice Kevin Cross was told on Thursday the case had settled and could be struck out.

Ann White had told the court she was attending the afters of a work colleague's wedding reception at the Aherlow House Hotel, Co Tipperary when she fell on the dance floor, fracturing her wrist and arm.

The 53-year old child care worker said there was a “serious scrum” of about 20 “very enthusiastic” single girls when the bride threw her bouquet at 12.30am.


A number of hands pulled at the bridal bouquet of pink and white roses and there were petals all over the dance floor, she said.

Ms White said she got up on the dance floor at about 2.30am and her right foot skidded.

She said she looked down and saw rose petals.

A friend went to grab her but she had a “massive skid” with the left foot and fell backwards, hit her head off the floor and heard a crack.

She said she skidded on rose petals. She was wearing stilettos but they were normal heels for age 50 plus, she said.

“I got a shock the pain was so bad, I could not talk I could not move my arm.”

The bride and groom came to her assistance, she added.

Ms White, Highfield Grove, Clonmel,Co Tipperary, sued Aherlow House Hotel Ltd, with offices at Limerick city, over the accident in the hotel in 2012.

She claimed that, about 2.30am on September 15th 2012, she was caused to fall on flower petals, hazardous material was permitted to be on the floor and there was a failure to take any or any adequate care of visitors to the premises.

The claims were denied and a full defence had been lodged in the case in which the hotel side claimed the incident was an unfortunate accident and was not foreseeable.

Struck out

When the case came back before the court today, Diarmuid P. O’Donovan SC, instructed by Cian O’Carroll solicitor, for Ms White, said the case had been compromised and could be struck out.

Mr Justice Cross said he was very glad to hear about the settlement and congratulated the parties on reaching it.

The case had a number of issues to be resolved and would have gone on for days.

A court decision on the case would be open to appeal which, considering the scarcity of judges, would have taken a long time, he added.

In her evidence,Ms White said she was transferred by ambulance to hospital after the fall and had surgery to her arm. She was in plaster of Paris for seven weeks and has been told she has to live with a pain syndrome.

“My arm is painful every day. I find it hard to dry my hair and I can’t wear jewellery on my left hand,” she said.

She used to love to knit for her grandchildren but cannot do that now, she added.

Counsel for the hotel, Jeremy Maher SC, had put to her she was “not half as badly injured” as she claimed but she replied: “You are wrong, the pain I have is real. It is there every single day.”

Mary Carolan

Mary Carolan

Mary Carolan is the Legal Affairs Correspondent of the Irish Times