It was supposed to be one of her regular Sunday afternoon trips to IKEA to help buy furniture for a new home for her daughter and grandchild.

But it ended up in Carol Ravenscroft suing the retail giant for neglect after she was forced to use herself as a human shield to protect two year old grandson Dylan from being crushed by a falling wardrobe .

Mrs Ravenscroft, 57, a teaching assistant at a special school, suffered injuries to her hands, arms and neck when she lunged in front of the mirror-fronted piece of furniture as it toppled over towards a trolley where Dylan was standing at the Swedish firm's Warrington branch in Cheshire.

But she had to fight a bitter 21 month legal battle during which IKEA contested her story, wrongly branded her a liar and claimed her personal injury claim was ''fraudulent and fundamentally dishonest".

Eventually at Manchester County Court Mrs Ravenscroft, from Swinton, near Salford, won £3,500 damages and was vindicated by a judge who ruled her claim was not false. Ikea were also ordered to pay an undisclosed amount in costs and legal fees.

Mrs Ravenscroft said she could have lost her job and may have been left with a £100,000 legal bill if IKEA's claims had been upheld.

"They were bullying me to make me drop my claim,'' she said. ''To be accused of lying about something so serious was a dreadful thing. It has been a nightmare since the incident.

"Dylan could have been seriously injured, if not worse, in the incident. I just did what any grandmother would do in the situation and put myself in the way to protect my grandson. But to be accused of lying about it was disgraceful."

The incident occurred in March 2014 when Mrs Ravenscroft was looking at a bedside table when the wardrobe which was being untied from a post by a member of staff began to fall towards them.

Carol's lawyer Sheldon Fagelman, of GLP Solicitors, said: “We believe that Ikea were trying to use these tactics to put her off in the hope she would drop her claim. My client was shocked with the way she was treated by Ikea in making such terrible allegations against her and suffered stress as a result.”

Cavendish Press' coverage of Mrs Ravenscroft's legal battle went in The Times, Daily Mirror and The Sun. If you have a story please contact us on 0161 237 1066 or email [email protected]

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