Clive Whittard visited a Waitrose store in July 2011 and bought himself a spring roll for lunch. After taking a single bite something inserted into his gum and became stuck between a wisdom tooth and a crown. Since he was in so much pain Mr Whittard called the NHS direct helpline where he was told that he should book an emergency dental appointment.
He paid £90.00 for an emergency appointment at the dentist surgery where he was told that his gum had been split and had to be stitched. He was also informed that his wisdom tooth had been damaged and was fitted with a temporary filling to improve comfort, although he was told that it would have to be taken out in the future.
Mr Whittard took it upon himself to return to the Waitrose store the next day in order to make a complaint. The incident was then recorded in the accident book and he was asked to provide proof of purchase, as well as the object that had lodged itself into his gum, so that the complaint could be forwarded to the Waitrose head office.
After waiting for a response from the head office, Mr Whittard was sent a letter explaining that the foreign object that was in his spring roll was a piece of bamboo and that the product was to be taken off the shelves so they were satisfied that it wouldn’t happen again. Enclosed with the letter was a £20.00 Waitrose gift voucher.
Clive wrote back to the head office, explaining he was unhappy with the £20.00 voucher that he’d received considering the injuries he’d sustained and asked whether there was the possibility of further compensation. Waitrose responded by saying that the case was now closed and declined any chance of compensation.
Since this incident, Mr Whittard’s temporary filling has fallen out and he was told that he wisdom tooth couldn’t be saved and would have to be extracted.
Mr Whittard decided to pursue a claim with Express Solicitors. Leanne Rowley worked hard to fight against Waitrose and their negligence and managed to secure a compensation settlement of just over £14,000 for the incident.