CREDIT: Facebook / Evening Standard

A construction company has been fined over £500,000 after a gay couple fell to their deaths.

CREDIT: Facebook / Evening Standard

Gavin Brewer, 32, and Stuart Meads, 34, both fell to their deaths in October 2013 after making contact with hoarding on a building which gave way sending both men down a 12ft drop.

Both Gavin and Stuart were pronounced dead at the scene following their fall.

Monavon Construction pleaded guilty to the corporate manslaughter of Gavin Brewer, 32, and Stuart Meads, 34, at the Old Bailey on Monday, 9 May.

The Metropolitan Police launched a joint investigation with the Health and Safety Executive. This investigation found that the hoardings had been fixed in such a way that only negligible force would have been required to make them give way.

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Monavon Construction were responsible for a building site in Netley Street at the junction with Hampstead Road, NW1. Work had been ongoing at the site for approximately three years and construction was nearing its conclusion.

Part of the site bordered Netley Street and plywood hoardings had been put in place there which covered the pavement. On 14 October 2013 work began to change the hoarding so the pavement could be reinstated. On Friday, 18 October this work had been completed leaving the hoardings, measuring approximately 4ft in height, fixed by wooden struts to a wall behind which measured between 130mm to 280mm in height.
Behind this wall was a drop of approximately 12ft down into a basement area.

Monavon was fined £250,000 each for the deaths of Gavin Brewer and Stuart Meads as well as £50,000 for heath and safety breached. They were also ordered to pay £23,653 prosecution costs.

Mr Meads’s father told the London Evening Standard shortly after his death,

“Stuart was a wonderful son and is a huge loss to our family. We are in shock. It is a very difficult time.”