Bobby and Christi Shepherd - Thomas Cook donates £1.5m compensation money to charity

Christie & Bobby Shepherd.'Christianne Shepherd and Robert Shepherd
Christie & Bobby Shepherd.'Christianne Shepherd and Robert Shepherd

Tour operator Thomas Cook has donated £1.5m it received in compensation following the deaths of two Horbury schoolchildren in Corfu to a charity.

The company was given the money following the deaths of Bobby and Christi Shepherd who were killed by carbon monoxide poisoning while on holiday in October 2006.

An inquest into their deaths found they were unlawfully killed and that Thomas Cook had “breached its duty of care.”

Bobby, six, and Christi, seven, died at the Louis Corcyra Beach Hotel on the Greek holiday island when fumes from a faulty boiler seeped into the bungalow they were staying in.

Thomas Cook was given the £1.5m compensation by the Louis Group following a case brought against the tour operator in October 2012.

Peter Fankhauser, group chief executive officer for Thomas Cook, said the money would be donated to Unicef.

He said: “Thomas Cook has not in any way profited from our claim against the hotel owner. In late 2012, we brought a claim against the hotelier for breaching their contract to provide safe accommodation to our customers and to comply with all applicable laws which was decided in our favour.”

“Today, I have made arrangements for the full amount – £1.5million - to be donated in full to Unicef, the world’s leading children’s organisation.

“I believe this is the right thing to do and I apologise to the family for all they have gone through.”

Bobby and Christi had been on a half-term holiday with their father Neil and his then partner, now wife, Ruth.

The children were found dead by a chambermaid and Neil and Ruth were both hospitalised after falling into a coma.

Thomas Cook was cleared of responsibility at a trial in Greece in 2010 and awarded damages against the hotel’s owner.

The inquest held at Wakefield Coroner’s Court heard there were four separate faults with a hot water boiler in an outbuilding attached to the side of the bungalow where the family were staying.