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Tree fells family’s Center Parcs holiday get together




The damage to the roof and doors of the Claxton car ANL-150415-145202001
The damage to the roof and doors of the Claxton car ANL-150415-145202001

A family whose holiday was spoiled when a tree fell on their car say they have been offered no recompense by Center Parcs.

Dan Claxton, from Unicorn Place, Bury St Edmunds, says they effectively lost two days of a four day Easter Stay at the Elveden holiday centre but have been told by Center Parcs that they cannot have a refund because it did not disrupt their holiday.

Dan Claxton, in the red jumper, enjotys a Center Parcs meal with his family before disaster struck ANL-150415-145150001
Dan Claxton, in the red jumper, enjotys a Center Parcs meal with his family before disaster struck ANL-150415-145150001

Mr Claxton, his wife and 22 month old son had joined his mother, sister, her partner and her three children in two lodges as his widowed mother’s treat.

But on the first morning staff knocked to say the tree had fallen.

“They had removed all the branches before they alerted us because they said they couldn’t find us, even though the car had a sticker saying which lodge it belonged to,” Mr Claxton said.

“They offered us a lift home, but as we only live in Bury that wasn’t generous.”

Mr Claxton said the tree narrowly missed a staff car next to his.

They were able to drive the 2004 Citroën C2 home, but it has been written off by their insurers because the tree had damaged the roof and the door tops, .

Mr Claxton works for the NHS Disability Resource Centre in Bury, assessing people for wheelchair aids, and had to cancel all his appointments across West Suffolk for the week.

As he is getting a company car he had sold his own car and was using his wife’s C2 while he was waiting.

He said: “I asked Center Parcs for a hire car because I can’t do my job without a vehicle, but we’ve been offered nothing from them.

“Not even money off another stay.”

“It’s really upset my mum because she feels quite guilty.

“We’ve now got to go through all the claims process.”

A Center Parcs spokeswoman said: “Our Ground Services team continually monitor the forest, identifying any weak trees that need to be removed for safety reasons.

“Occasionally, particularly high winds can bring down trees without warning as in any forest environment and in this case, a tree fell causing damage to Mr Claxton’s car.

“As soon as we were aware of the fallen tree, we took action to remove it and offered to take the family home.”



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