When Cordelia Summers was five years young, a Sunday wasn’t a Sunday if she didn’t get to spend time with her beloved Nanna. The two of them were practically inseparable. One weekend Nanna taught a mesmerised Cordelia about sewing. She was fascinated by the thought of fixing bits of clothing and wondering what she might be able to make one day. The possibilities seemed endless.
Cordelia would often ask Nanna to sew with her, especially on the rainy and cold days of winter.
Years later, Cordelia was now spending her free time making all sorts of items, from throws to cushions and quilt covers. Business went well and Cordelia was happy spending her weekends attending local craft fairs and markets.
One weekend when Cordelia wasn’t attending the market she sat down with her friends, Alyson and Rupert and privately taught them a few methods and together they each made a cushion case and they were all thrilled with the results. Cordelia had a knack for teaching and she enjoyed it too, so she decided to branch out her business and teach classes as well.
Cordelia set up a studio from which she could teach and classes soon filled up and she soon found herself contemplating leaving her day job, doing more classes and crafting full time.
On one autumn evening, Cordelia was teaching her paying students how to make a duvet cover. There were twelve attendees to this particular class and for the most part things were going well. However, one attendee hadn’t been paying full attention to Cordelia’s safety advice and was allowing the duvet material to hang over the end of her workbench. One other attendee to the class was at the workbench in front and got up off her seat and didn’t see the material hanging down. As the lady took a step her leg got caught in the duvet material and she tripped over. Desperately trying to avoid hitting her head she put her hands out in front of her. Her hands hit the worktop with force and there was a loud crack, the woman almost immediately yelped in pain. The poor woman’s head still hit the table, but thankfully her hands and wrist had taken most of the impact.
Cordelia ran over to the woman immediately to check she was ok. Her forehead was red and a small lump was already starting to form but on seeing the woman’s hands and wrists a chill went down Cordelia’s spine. The woman’s right wrist was clearly broken.
Because the woman had a head injury Cordelia didn’t want to take any risks. She called an ambulance and took notes, ensuring she was very thorough, to the extent of even taking a picture of the position of the piece of material the woman had tripped over. The injured woman was attended to by paramedics, who took her off to the hospital.
The next day Cordelia called her insurance company. She informed them of the incident and said it was possible that it could lead to a claim. On the phone she mentioned the fact the incident happened during a class she was teaching. Immediately the claims handler pointed out that the policy she had taken out didn’t cover her for teaching classes where customers would have a handson role and to top it off, her policy was now invalid. It was yet another horrifying moment of panic for Cordelia as she realised she was now liable for any claim that would arise. If only Cordelia had taken the extra time to read about the policies she might have taken out the correct policy intended for teachers and she would have been covered for a situation like this, now she had to wait and see if a formal claim was going to be made.
This information was supplied by Bill Imber BSC (Hons), Cert C.I.I., G M Imber & Sons Ltd., Insurance Brokers, phone 01342 327250, who specialises in insurances for the Retail, Crafts and Market Trading Industries. Visit www.gmisl.co.uk