Sign fall death bookshop will open, say bosses

The collapsed sign outside Waterstones which tragically claimed the life of Margaret Sheridan
The collapsed sign outside Waterstones which tragically claimed the life of Margaret Sheridan
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A Blackpool bookshop that has been closed since a member of staff was killed when the shop’s sign fell on her will reopen, bosses say.

A council investigation is still ongoing into the incident at Waterstones, on Bank Hey Street, last month – but police are no longer involved in the inquiry.

Bookseller Margaret Sheridan, 68, from Singleton, was killed when she was hit by the falling sign as she locked up the store on January 12.

It is understood that the incident was not weather-related.

The town centre shop has remained shut since Ms Sheridan’s death and customers are still in the dark over when it is due to reopen.

However, Waterstones has insisted the closure is only “temporary” but was unable to give a timescale for work to repair the store.

A spokesman today said: “Waterstones in Blackpool has been closed temporarily after the tragic accident in January.

“The resulting death of our bookseller Margaret Sheridan has been deeply saddening for family, friends and colleagues.

“Waterstones Blackpool will reopen again after repair works to the building that will be undertaken shortly.

“We will confirm the date of reopening once these are underway.”

Blackpool Council said it would not comment on the investigation until it has reached its conclusion, adding only that was not clear how long the inquiry into the accident would take.

A Lancashire Police spokesman said: “Our investigation has ended and is now back with Blackpool Council.”

No charges have been brought as a result of the police inquiry.

Still waiting for answers as shop sign death investigation continues

Depending on the outcome of the inquiry that is now being led by Blackpool Council, the death of Margaret Sheridan could yet be investigated by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

However, town hall chiefs have given no indication of how long their own probe will last.

HSE has confirmed it is aware of the incident, when Ms Sheridan was killed after sign at the front of the shop fell on her, but is not currently investigating.

A spokesman said: “It is not something HSE is directly involved with.

“It is the council that is investigating because of where it happened.”

The 68-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene.