Prosecutors considering charges against Pontins after death of grandmother

Wendy Jones died six months after being injured at Pontins. Credit: Family handout

The Crown Prosecution Service is considering charges against Pontins after a grandmother died following a ceiling collapse at a Somerset holiday park.Wendy Jones was injured in the incident at the Brean Sands resort in 2019.

Avon and Somerset Police has now announced it has referred the case to prosecutors, who could bring criminal charges against Pontins' parent company, Britannia Jinky Jersey.

In 2019, an air conditioning duct collapsed and injured several people, including 68-year-old grandmother Wendy Jones. Mrs Jones died in hospital six months later.Her son James Havard-Jones said he welcomed the news that police have handed a file to the Crown Prosecution Service.

Speaking about Wendy's death, James said: "It changed everything. It changes the people you can go to when you need help. It took away a loving grandmother from children.

Emergency services at Pontins Brean Sands in 2019 following the collapse. Credit: ITV News

"My wife, in trying to explain to my children what happened, said ‘nanny’s gone to live on the moon’ so now when my children say ‘hello nanny’ they’re looking up at the moon. It brings back emotions that she’s not here. 

"My sister lost not only a mum but her best friend, they were incredibly close. My sister looked after mum lots. For family, we lost mum, a friend, a confidant, and a support network. 

"She was incredibly kind. She had a dry wit, she wouldn’t often crack wise but when she did there was always good humour there. 

"She transcended generations, she was able to talk with young people, people her own age, and old people. Kind, humble, caring, always willing to help."

A spokesperson for Avon and Somerset Police said: “We have investigated, together with the local authority, an incident in February 2019 at Pontins Brean Sands Holiday Park in which ducting collapsed onto a number of people.

“It followed the sad death of 68-year-old Wendy Jones in August 2019.

“A postmortem examination found a clear link between Mrs Jones’ death and the injuries she sustained in the incident.

“Detectives have remained open minded about the cause of the ducting collapse in what has been an extremely complex inquiry.

“Health and safety offences, as well as both gross negligence and corporate manslaughter offences have been considered as part of the joint investigation.

“Pontins’ parent company, Britannia Jinky Jersey, has provided a statement, while a 58-year-old man from Lancashire has also been arrested and remains released under investigation.

“Last month, we referred the case to Crown Prosecution Service. We continue to provide updates to Mrs Jones’ family and our thoughts remain with them following their loss.”

ITV News West Country has approached Britannia Jinky Jersey for comment but they have not responded.