Elizabeth-Anne Gumbel QC and Henry Witcomb, instructed by Jill Greenfield at Field Fisher Waterhouse, have successfully represented a barrister who suffered severe brain damage when he fell down the stairs in Daly’s Wine Bar on Fleet Street.

Michael Waterworth had been out celebrating with two of his friends who had recently been made QCs when he fell backwards down a fight of “steep stairs” smashing his head on a step at the bottom. He was rushed to the Royal London Hospital and underwent emergency neurosurgery. However, he remains in hospital six months after his accident, and is likely to require round the clock care for life and to never work again.

Elizabeth-Anne and Henry argued that these particular stairs were steep and there was a gap in the handrail. Had there been a continuous handrail and better lighting, this accident would have been prevented and Michael would have been able to prevent his fall. Liability was denied by the Defence.

An agreement was reached in October in which a substantial settlement was accepted. This settlement has now been approved by Mr Justice Ramsay, who ordered that the amount of the payout should remain confidential.