Ginger Beer and Snails Don’t go Together!

Everyone has an accident at some time, but you will only be able to bring a claim for any injury that you suffered if the accident was caused by someone’s negligence.

The concept of negligence arose from the legal case of Donoghue v Stevenson in 1932 when Mrs Donoghue drank from a bottle of ginger beer. It wasn’t until she had nearly finished that she realised the bottle contained a dead snail.

Consequently, Mrs Donoghue fell ill and sued the manufacturer of the ginger beer, Mr Stevenson.

The case went all the way to the House of Lords where the legal definition of negligence, based around the idea of owing to someone a duty of care, was set out for the first time.

The Court decided everyone must take care to avoid acts or omissions which you can reasonably foresee are likely to injure your neighbour.

Your neighbour is not just the person next door but anyone so closely affected by what you do or don’t do that you should bear in mind the impact of your actions on them.

This doesn’t just apply to snails and ginger beer bottles but in everyday life. The driver of a vehicle owes other road users a duty of care, an employer owes a duty of care to her employees, an occupier to people on his land for example.

If you have suffered an injury in the last three years which has been caused by someone’s negligence, then you may be entitled to compensation. Contact us on tel: 01228 522215 or email

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