HE IS the 96-year-old war veteran who was refused compensation after suffering serious facial injuries in a fall.

Bernie Beckett was walking along Above Bar Street in Southampton when he tripped over a piece of uneven paving and needed hospital treatment. S

But Mr Beckett was denied a pay-out following the accident, which occurred after contractors were given six months to repair the pavement.

During that time they were guaranteed immunity from any claims lodged by people injured in falls.

Daily Echo:

Now Mr Beckett has been presented with a card and £70 by a woman who rushed to hisAS aid as he lay injured on the ground.

Sasha Dee set up a GoFundMe page headed by the message: “I stopped and talked to this gentleman while he waited for the ambulance. He fought the Nazis during the Second World War and still takes part in the Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal.

“Let’s raise some money for Bernie.”

The presentation was made at a Royal British Legion welfare office a few yards from where Mr Beckett was injured earlier this year.

His daughter, Alison Hunt, said: “After my father fell over Sasha made sure he was OK and decided to raise some money for him. He was overwhelmed that a complete stranger would do something like that for him. I’d like everyone to know that there are some very kind people around.”

As reported in the Daily Echo, Mr Beckett was walking past Starbucks when he tripped and fell, damaging his clothes and suffering facial injuries which kept him in hospital for six hours.

The city council knew repairs were needed and had already arranged for the work to be carried out.

Daily Echo:

But the size of the “non-urgent” repair meant contractors Balfour Beatty had up to six months to do the job, during which they and the council were immune from any compensation claims.

Mr Beckett, of Westwood Road, Southampton, obtained a compensation form from the council. He claimed £8.50 for his daughter’s hospital parking, plus an unspecified sum for new shoes, a new jacket and the pain and inconvenience he suffered.

Speaking last month a city council spokesman said: “Unfortunately it’s not always possible for us to repair faults immediately.

“Southampton City Council’s highways policy allows up to six months in which to carry out non-urgent repairs although we will try, if possible, to repair within two months.

“This follows standard operating procedure across the country.”