Why did James die after eating food ordered via the Deliveroo app?

by Stuart and Jill Atkinson

Why did James die after eating food ordered via the Deliveroo app?

by Stuart and Jill Atkinson
Stuart and Jill Atkinson
Case Owner
The parents of James Atkinson
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Stuart and Jill Atkinson
Case Owner
The parents of James Atkinson
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Latest: July 7, 2022

Remembering James

This Sunday, 10 July 2022, is the second anniversary of our James’ death. We will be remembering James this weekend especially, thinking of the happy times we all had together as a family.

We ju…

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We are Stuart and Jill Atkinson from Leeds, the parents of the late James Atkinson. Our beautiful son died suddenly on 10 July 2020 when he was just 23 years old after ordering a takeaway pizza via the Deliveroo app from Dadyal Restaurant. James had a known nut allergy to peanuts and we have been told that he may have suffered a severe allergic reaction known as “anaphylaxis” after we believe he ate just once slice of pizza.  He was eating dinner with a few of his flat mates in Newcastle where they lived.  We didn’t even get to say goodbye before his heart stopped.  He died alone, without his mum, dad and family with him. He was a clever boy; he had graduated from Newcastle University after studying computer science.  How could this have happened to him when he was always so careful?  There will always be a hole in our hearts without James.

We have been told by the police that the restaurant may have swapped an ingredient in his pizza on the day he died to a powder containing peanuts.  We want to find out if that is correct, and if so, how that could have been allowed to happen.

A bit about our wonderful son James

James was a bright and bubbly character who lived life to the full. He loved sports especially rugby, cycling and running. He also completed a triathlon with his friends which he was very proud of.  He moved to Newcastle to study computer science and loved it so much he decided to stay. He loved spending time with his friends and brightened up any room. He was the life and soul of a party and went out of his way to make sure everyone was having a good time. 

James loved his time with family and looked forward to coming home to spend time with us all and having long walks with our dog. James also loved a games night and would enjoy beating us all! James will be forever missed by all his family and friends.

Our legal case

As James died in unusual circumstances, there will be an “Inquest” into his death which is an official Court process to hopefully find out how, when and where he died.

The first Court hearing in this process, called a “Pre-Inquest Review Hearing” will be going ahead on 10 May 2022 in Newcastle. We have been told that a 3-day Inquest into James’ death will be taking place on what would have been his 26th birthday. We should be celebrating his life on this day and instead we are going to be asking questions about what happened to him that night. We have no words to describe how painful this will be.  

But this isn’t just about James. There are over 2 million people living with a diagnosed food allergy in the UK and this number is on the rise. Everyone living with an allergy deserves to have confidence to order a takeaway free from fear of having a severe allergic reaction.  They have the right to be told if the food they order contains any allergens.  That should be basic stuff.

Deliveroo is a massive company and it is daunting facing them in a legal process like this.  More and more people order food online this way and we think we need to shine a light on how this happens.

In order to help us in this complicated legal process involving big organisations, we feel we need the very best legal representation.  The law surrounding food information and allergies is very complicated, consisting of lots of guidance and regulation that is lengthy and confusing. We have instructed the legal team from law firm Leigh Day that helped Natasha Ednan-Laperouse’s family, Owen Carey’s family and Shanté Turay-Thomas’ family to give us the best chance.  We would also like to work with a specialist barrister who has experience in high profile cases like this.  

We owe it to James’ memory to help the Senior Coroner find out whether there are any lessons to be learnt.  If there are, we will work with other campaigners to try to make sure that other people with allergies and their families don’t have to go through what we have.  

How much do we need to raise? 

To start off with, we need to raise a minimum amount of £10,000.  If we can reach this goal, we make sure that we have the best team to help us participate properly in the first part of his case. We will make sure that we post regular updates on this website in order to keep anyone that wants to help up to date with any information that we are able to give.  If we reach that target, we may need to raise at least £50,000 to get to the end of the case.  By spreading the word, we hope we can achieve this.

We are determined to ensure a full and fearless Inquest into James’ death and want to do all we can in his memory to help increase the protection for allergy sufferers in the UK.  

Thank you for reading this. Please help us get Justice for James.

Stuart and Jill Atkinson & Family

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Update 5

Stuart and Jill Atkinson

July 7, 2022

Remembering James

This Sunday, 10 July 2022, is the second anniversary of our James’ death. We will be remembering James this weekend especially, thinking of the happy times we all had together as a family.

We just wanted to say a massive thank you to everyone who has donated for their ongoing support. We have been so overwhelmed by peoples kind generosity and messages of support not just from the UK, but around the world.  We can’t bring James back, but we are so grateful that your backing is allowing us to do the very best for James, and get us the proper legal support that he deserves. We will aim to provide you with the next case update as soon as we can. 

Thank you.

Stuart, Jill and the family 

Update 4

Stuart and Jill Atkinson

May 23, 2022

Good Morning Britain Interview

We are really grateful to Susanna Reid and Richard Madeley for interviewing us on   Good Morning Britain today to talk about our wonderful son James. We miss him every day. Watch our interview here: 

Update 3

Stuart and Jill Atkinson

May 10, 2022

Today we attended the First Pre-Inquest Review Hearing in Newcastle

Nothing can ever bring our James back but today we stood for him in Court and called for a full and proper investigation into his utterly avoidable death. 

We have lodged a Victims' Right to Review calling on the Police to re-investigate what happened and to potentially bring criminal cases against those we believe played their part. 

We are pleased that the Coroner confirmed that Deliveroo will be required to attend the Inquest and provide evidence. 

We are so grateful to the hundreds of people across the country who have supported our CrowdJustice fundraising campaign. Only through your amazing kindness and generosity will we finally get Justice for James. Please keep spreading the word to help us hit our goal. 

Love, James' Family x 

Update 2

Stuart and Jill Atkinson

May 9, 2022

James on Graduation Day

We wanted to share a picture of James on his graduation day. He studied Computer Science at Newcastle University and he loved it. 

Update 1

Stuart and Jill Atkinson

May 9, 2022

Half way to initial target!

There has been an outpouring of public support since yesterday’s media coverage. We have now raised half the initial target, but we still need your help to keep going. Please keep spreading the word. 

Much love, James’ family

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