Woman wins £180,000 after boss wouldn't let her leave early to pick up daughter 9 months ago

Woman wins £180,000 after boss wouldn't let her leave early to pick up daughter

Alice Thompson only wanted to finish an hour early

A female estate agent has won a sex discrimination claim against her employer after she wasn't allowed to leave work early to collect her newborn from the nursery.


Alice Thompson, from Weybridge, Surrey, fell pregnant in 2018 while working as a full-time sales manager at Manors, a small firm in London, Metro reports.

Thompson was required to work until 6pm, but because nurseries are closed by then, she asked if she could reduce her hours to part-time so she could finish at 5pm.

Company director Paul Sellar denied the request, saying the company could not afford the new arrangement. He also feared it would cause a "detrimental effect on the ability to meet customer demand".


Thompson quit her job in December 2019 and took Manors to an employment tribunal where she explained that her case was motivated by a desire that her daughter not suffer "the same experience" when she grows up.

The tribunal awarded Thompson £184,961.32 for loss of earnings, pension contributions, injury to feelings and interest, finding that the company’s insistence on a 6 pm finish placed her at a "disadvantage".

At a party celebrating Thompson's pregnancy in Spring 2018, she claimed she heard Sellar tell a colleague, "I thought, for fuck’s sake, why is she pregnant when we are doing so well? I was warned about employing a married woman of her age."

After going on maternity leave, Thompson said she was told to hand in her phone and keys as if she was leaving the business. Then, later that month, she was told she was overly emotional due to her pregnancy.


Thompson also claimed that she was deliberately excluded from a trip to New York and a boozy boat trip.

Employment judge Sarah Jane Goodman found Thompson had been discriminated against by the denial of her request, calling it an "injustice because of her sex", but rejected other claims brought by the estate agent in relation to the alleged comments by  Sellar.

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