The National Trust has granted £50,000 to a ‘humiliated’ Winston Churchill gardener.
AFTER alleging that the National Trust “totally shattered her soul,” a former gardener at Winston Churchill’s family home was given nearly £50,000 in compensation.
Since retiring from her position as kitchen gardener at the charity’s property Chartwell in Westerham, Kent, Claire Bryant has been entangled in a three-year dispute with the organization. She had wanted to advance to senior gardener after five years on the estate, but alleges she was “humiliated” in front of the public due to criticisms about her performance in her current position.
Ms Bryant, 63, was “constructively unfairly dismissed” by the organisation, according to the judges in her employment tribunal.
According to Surrey Live, Ms Bryant has been granted little over £49,000 in compensation for unjust dismissal, discrimination, and harassment.
“I can honestly say, I have never been closer to a full mental breakdown than I have been during the previous three years,” Ms Bryant said after the ruling. It’s been dreadful, dreadful dreadful dreadful dreadful dreadful terrible
“It’s shattered every ounce of confidence I had, but it’s never, ever been about the money for me. It’s all about being able to defend yourself. The tribunal, held remotely via video in Ashford, Kent, upheld complaints of direct discrimination and harassment on the basis of sex in relation to a senior job Ms Bryant was invited to apply for, but which was given to a male applicant who scored significantly lower in the interview process than she did.
According to the tribunal, the second half of the interview was expected to include scenario-based questions.
Despite her previous four Performance and Development Reviews (PDRs) being assessed as “exceptional” or “very good,” with “high potential,” Ms Bryant said she was ashamed outside the café in front of the public.
Ms Bryant continued, “I felt relief that I didn’t have to feel intimidated or afraid anymore, and relief that I had my voice heard because I had been shouting into the wind for three years.” She added that the National Trust “completely broke [her]spirit” and that she will take “a very long time” to recover.
Ms Bryant, from Tatsfield, Surrey, was in charge of a team of gardeners in addition to her own responsibilities as a kitchen gardener. “Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”