A devastating accident involving a fly-tip has left a mother heartbroken as her daughter, Bella, lost several fingers in the incident. The incident occurred in April when 8-year-old Bella was playing in an alleyway behind their home on Kestrel Avenue in Clifton, Salford. According to her mother, Kerry Ratcliffe, Bella was constructing a den when she accidentally stepped on a garden table that had been dumped in the alleyway.
In an interview with the Manchester Evening News, Kerry shared the heartbreaking details. The table wobbled, causing Bella to lose her balance and grab onto a nearby fence. Tragically, her fingers were severed in the process. Kerry vividly remembers the moment when she heard Bella’s screams and a neighbor rushed to their aid. Overwhelmed with shock, Kerry collapsed upon learning the extent of her daughter’s injuries.
Bella was immediately taken to Wythenshawe Hospital, where she underwent a 12-hour surgery in an attempt to reattach her fingers. Unfortunately, the procedure did not go as planned. Despite the challenges, 9-year-old Bella has shown remarkable resilience and has returned to school—a significant milestone for her. However, Kerry remains deeply troubled and seeks answers regarding the accident.
In light of the incident, Kerry has relocated her family to Winton in Salford to be closer to her relatives. She emphasizes the need for action and urges the authorities to secure the alleyway, which residents claim is a notorious fly-tipping hot spot. Kerry highlights the presence of private iron gates that were supposed to secure the area but were reportedly left open, allowing unrestricted access.
Salford council confirmed that the land belongs to ForHousing, a housing association. Nigel Sedman, the executive director of homes at ForHousing, expressed deep remorse upon learning about Bella’s tragic accident. He explained that the security fence had been installed several years ago in response to concerns raised by neighbors about anti-social behavior and fly-tipping. Sedman assured that the organization promptly visited the site to address the incident and make it safe. ForHousing remains committed to supporting the local community and working towards a resolution.
While Bella will eventually receive a prosthetic hand, her mother hopes that authorities will take the necessary measures to prevent similar accidents in the future. Kerry’s plea for a secure and safe environment serves as a reminder of the importance of addressing issues like fly-tipping to protect the well-being of residents, especially children, in their neighborhoods.