Alan Dransfield's Blog

Alan Dransfield's Blog

Freedom of Information and Health and Safety

This blog is aimed at shaming those who ignore health and safety and those who abuse the Freedom of Information Act out of laziness, corruption or to cover up incompetence.

Health and Safety Executive - fit for purpose?

Ben Bradshaw MPPosted by Sheila Oliver Mon, February 29, 2016 07:26:41

Dear Mr Bradshaw MP

I call upon my MP to write to the appropriate Secretary of State and call for a public inquiry into the Health and Safety Executive and the conduct of their officials.

As you are aware the HSE informed me recently that they can't investigate my allegations ref Health & Safety violations at the Haven Bank Climbing Centre in Exeter because it is a Leisure Centre and does not come under their remit.

At best, such statements are hogwash and at worst they are designed to obstruct justice.

No person applying a right and proper mind would say leisure centres do not come under the HSE remit.

Please see the following HSE report into Leisure Centre deaths.

With thanks

Yours sincerely

Alan M Dransfield


No wonder they imposed a lifetime email ban against me.


"Centre operator sentenced after child drowning

Date:18 July 2013

The operator of an Essex leisure centre has been ordered to pay more than £190,000 in fines and costs after a seven year-old girl drowned in a swimming pool.

Michelle Gellard, from East London, died after she went swimming with a number of other children at the Blackwater Leisure Centre in Maldon on 14 June 2008 after attending a judo competition.

Bedfordshire-based Leisure Connection Ltd, which operates the pool, was prosecuted today (18 July) by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) after an investigation into the death identified serious failings with lifeguard cover.

Chelmsford Crown Court heard there were two lifeguards on poolside duty on the day, increasing to three lifeguards when members of the public found Michelle at the bottom of the pool’s deep end.

One of the lifeguards retrieved Michelle from the water with the assistance of another swimmer. Sadly, despite resuscitation attempts, she was later pronounced dead at Colchester General Hospital.

The HSE investigation concluded that Leisure Connection Ltd failed over a period of time to ensure that sufficient, suitably positioned lifeguards were always on poolside duty to ensure the safety of pool users.

The court was told the company had failed to identify that this leisure centre was not compliant with its own procedures, and that the procedures in place at the site were inadequate.

Leisure Connection Ltd, of Potton House, Wyboston Lakes, Great North Road, Wyboston, Bedfordshire, was fined £90,000 with costs of £101,663 after admitting breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.

After the hearing, HSE inspector Antonina Drury said:

"This tragic and untimely death should never have happened.

"Members of the public visiting leisure centre swimming pools have an entitlement to expect that the operator paid to run them will deploy and train its staff so as to provide sufficient numbers of life guards in the right places so as to operate the pool safely.

"In this case, Michelle Gellard was robbed of her chances of rescue and survival by Leisure Connection’s failures.

"Evidence emerged in the course on the investigation that Leisure Connection failed to identify and address the fact that the amount of life guarding it was paying its staff to provide at Blackwater Leisure Centre was noticeably less than the amount it knew was required for full and safe operation of the pool."

For further information about safety in leisure activities, visit"

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