Parents slam inquest into death of toddler crushed by falling lamp post

10:54 17 May 2012

Kate and Chris Hollis talk to the media outside the West London Coroners Court in Chelsea, following the inquest into death of their baby son Thomas, who was killed by a lamppost which fell on top of his pram. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday May 16, 2012. See PA story INQUEST Lamppost. Photo credit should read: John Stillwell/PA Wire

Kate and Chris Hollis talk to the media outside the West London Coroners Court in Chelsea, following the inquest into death of their baby son Thomas, who was killed by a lamppost which fell on top of his pram. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday May 16, 2012. See PA story INQUEST Lamppost. Photo credit should read: John Stillwell/PA Wire

The parents of tragic toddler Tommy Hollis have spoken of their pain at the death of their baby son and slammed the inquest into his death.

Eleven month-old Tommy, suffered a devastating head injury when a lamp post fell on his buggy in Chiswick, west London, west London, on February 23, 2010.

Workman Kelvin Elmore had cut a metal plate supporting the lamp post five days previously, not realising what it was, the inquest at West London Coroner’s Court heard.

Speaking outside West London Coroner’s Court yesterday, with her husband’s arm around her, Mrs Hollis said their sorrow was “compounded” by the way the inquest was conducted.

“We came here knowing it would be an extremely challenging time for us.

“However, we did not expect our upset and anguish to be compounded by what we feel was the coroner’s decision to exclude from consideration questions and evidence that might lead us to better understand how our son, Tommy, was killed in February 2010.

“We feel let down that crucial witnesses were not called or declined to answer questions.

“In particular, Kelvin Elmore, who cut the plate, chose not to give evidence and explain to the court, in person, why he did what he did.

“Despite what has been reported, Mr Elmore is not an engineer.

“Also, Hounslow Borough Council, under whose control these works were carried out, have been notably absent from these proceedings.

“We would also like know why there was no engineer on site at or around the time of the cut to the lamp post when it was apparent that the job was becoming more complicated and how no one realised that the plate was connected to the lamp post despite it being so close.”

A spokesman for Hounslow council said: “This was an awful tragedy and our sympathies remain with the Hollis family for the loss of their son Tommy.

“Safety is always the paramount concern. There was a suggestion during the inquest that undue pressure was placed on contractors by the council to hurry up the work. This was not supported by the whole of the evidence. We would never compromise safety by placing pressure on council officers or contractors to rush to complete work.

“It is important to finish works on time so that the public do not suffer unnecessary inconvenience, but this would never come before public safety.”

Latest Stories

17 minutes ago
The scheme is designed to crack down on crime and antisocial behaviour committed whilst people are drunk (Photo by Ralph Orlowski/Getty Images)

Londoners who repeatedly break the law whilst drunk will be forced to wear ankle tags that can tell if they have been drinking, as Mayor of London Boris Johnson pledges to tackle ‘booze culture’.

Read more
50 minutes ago
Christopher Bridger was accused of sexual offences against three women. He was found guilty of raping a woman whilst he was studying in south London in 2008 [Picture courtesy of Metropolitan Police]

A trainee paramedic at St George’s University Hospital in London has been found guilty of rape at Guildford Crown Court, after lulling women “into a false sense of security by claiming to be gay”.

Read more
Yesterday, 16:44
Lutfur Rahman's tweet

Tower Hamlets Mayor Lutfur Rahman has ordered the Palestinian flag to be flown from the Town Hall.

Read more

Quirky London

Quizzes

But which London?! [Photo courtesy of Basher Eyre]

Yoou might know London like the back of your hand, but how well do you know the other Londons - and London landmarks - across the world?

Read more
The prize is glory (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

It used to be Manhattan that was famous for its majestic skyline, but now our fair city is catching up. Do you know your Shard from your Heron Tower?

Read more
Test your London musical knowledge with our album quiz (Images via Getty)

Does your music knowledge stretch from The Rolling Stones to Rudimental, Spandau Ballet to Siouxsie and the Banshees? If so then test it out with our London bands quiz:

Read more