A company which was found guilty of a health and safety breach following the death of one of its employees has had its bid to reduce its fine rejected.

Stewart Clague Services was fined £200,000 plus costs after the death of Gary Skelding on August 4, 2020.

Mr Skelding was working for SCS when a scaffolding collapsed at the building site he was employed on in King William’s College.

The company sought leave to appeal against its fine saying the £200,000 was ‘manifestly excessive’.

SCS claimed that Deemster Sandeep Kainth had erred when applying the Sentencing Guidelines for Health and Safety Offences by using a starting point of Step 3 for the sentencing, which gave a starting point for a fine of £300,000.

However, the Attorney General’s Chambers argued that the company was ‘fortunate’ that Deemster Kainth didn’t raise this further.

In their ruling Judge of Appeal Justice Anthony Cross and Deemster Richard Pratt said: ‘We agree that a closer analysis of the facts indicated that this case could have been both higher culpability and greater harm.’

They said that during the original sentencing in February of this year, Mr Skelding’s widow Alison had read a victim impact statement that set out the ‘traumatic consequences’ his death had had on her family.

Mrs Skelding told the Court of General Gaol: ‘I just hope that companies and workers on building sites might take a bit more time to ensure the right decisions are made so that another family doesn’t have to experience this.’

Justice Cross and Deemster Pratt said: ‘In doing so, she stated without realising it, that the purpose of a sentence is not only to punish and to deter others from similar conduct, but also to mark the gravity of the offending in a proportionate way.’

They added that the company’s appeal had ‘no reasonable prospect of success’ and so leave to appeal the sentence was refused. The company must also pay £1,250 costs.