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Pontins roof collapse – Mum 'thought it was a bomb' when ceiling fell down injuring 18

Kids were left screaming in fear as debris rained down families at the entertainment centre of the Brean Sands resort near Weston-super-Mare, Somerset.

Six people had to be hospitalised after the collapse in one of the main rooms where families played bingo and kids were  treated to a show.

Mum Kelly Mansell, 38, said her children had been dancing when the collapse unfolded about two metres from them.

She told The Sun Online: "I thought it was a bomb, it was such a loud bang.

"My ten-year-old saw it fall and just started screaming."

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Kelly said she immediately grabbed her kids and ran to the exit, saying: "There were big panels of insulation and people screaming.

"I helped a few people to move out. It was very dusty.

"I had a black top on and I was covered in dust and insulation. It got all in your eyes."

The mum, who is holidaying with her family including her four-year-old twins Ellis and Jenna and ten-year-old daughter Kady from their West Sussex home, said the kids were now terrified after the experience.

She said: "They couldn’t sleep last night.

"We just came here for a cheap getaway to get away with family but didn’t realise we would be risking our lives."

I thought it was a bomb, it was such a loud bang

Laura Robinson, whose family of five children are at the site, told the BBC: "We were in the family clubhouse, suddenly part of the roof [came] down halfway across the room, all across tables and people.

"It has come straight down over the tables in a long line.

"I heard this cracking noise and looked up and part of it's coming down and then the whole way along it went."

Another woman said: "If I wouldn't have moved a big slab of concrete would have landed on my head and split my head open.

"It landed right by my feet."

One stunned guest described it as "like a terror attack" – adding she was worried children would be injured.

And a mum said: “We have all been sent back to the chalets, I saw the ceiling come down.

“Emergency services are on site, and we are waiting to hear any news.

“My main priority was get my five kids out. I know air ambulance has been out.”

A spokesman for Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service said ducting fell from the roof – exposing dangerous live electrical wires.

Alarms were going off, screaming and the roof was all on the floor. They're all outside now not allowed to leave, people being sick, crying, screaming from people stuck apparently.

Lisa Cook told the site she was hit by some falling debris as the roof caved in.

She said: "I’d just bought a bingo ticket and had moved into the entertainment area.

“Something fell from the roof and scraped the side of my neck but missed my head – I’m lucky, really."

Former New Zealand cricketer Iain O'Brian wrote on Twitter: "Arrived back to Pontins Brean Sands this afternoon, after a day out, to a major site panic.

"Sirens now, helicopters circling. Hope everyone is OK! It makes the leaky toilet in our room rather insignificant."

He later posted: "Word is, and hopefully it's accurate, no one seriously hurt.

"Serious amount of emergency services here. Staff very shaken and look like they could do with a hug or two."


A statement from the Avon and Somerset Police said they were called just before 6.30pm yesterday to Brean Sands Holiday Park in Brean following reports a ceiling had collapsed inside a building.

They said: "A number of people suffered minor injuries in the incident but thankfully no one was seriously hurt.

"A search of the scene has been carried out and we can confirm no one was trapped under the debris.

"The Health and Safety Executive have been informed."

One person staying at the holiday park said he thought the main club house roof has collapsed, and he thought Pontins would ask people to go home.

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service said in a statement: "The incident involved the collapse of approximately 40m of structural ducting and ceiling sections, exposing live damaged electrics and making the scene unstable.

"Fire crews used eight high-pressure airbags and small tools to establish that no persons were trapped beneath the collapse."

The scene was made safe and fire crews had left the scene, they added.


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