Published on 14 - January - 2007
Focus pays out £700,000 to former employeeA former Do It All employee has been awarded £700,000 in compensation after being left wheelchair-bound through a deadly virus he caught from a parrot while he was working for the company.
Focus, which took over Do It All, reached an out-of-court settlement with Glyn Atherton, of Chesterfield, Derbyshire, just before the case was due to be heard by the High Court in Sheffield.
Mr Atherton won a six year battle for compensation after he contracted a rare disease, psittacosis, from an African grey parrot.
Although Mr Atherton - an assistant manager at Focus Do It All, in Bulwell, Nottingham - did not work in the Pet World section of the store, he often walked through it and past the parrot during the day.
Staff in contact with pets wore protective clothing when they cleaned out the bird cages, but Mr Atherton maintained that anyone walking past the cages while they were being cleaned could have inhaled the dust and contracted the disease.
Following diagnosis of the Mr Atherton's condition, a post mortem on the parrot revealed that it had been suffering from psittacosis - a form of pneumonia.
A spokesman for Focus, which admitted liability, said: "The case has been concluded and we have no further comment to make."