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Last Updated: Tuesday August 04 2009 15:29 GMT

Boy's shock at huge court ruling

Maddy and Curtis

Boy wins disability court battle

A 13-year-old boy born without fingers on his right hand has told Newsround how it felt to hear his local council was responsible for his disability.

Curtis is one of several children in Northamptonshire who were born with deformities to their hands and feet, between 1985 and 1999.

Now, after years of fighting to prove their disabilities were Corby Borough Council's fault, a court has agreed.

"When I found out I just couldn't believe it," Curtis told Maddy.

"I couldn't believe that people didn't do their job properly when they were sorting out the waste.

"I have to live with their mistakes for the rest of my life."

Curtis
Curtis says people stop to look at his hand but he tries to make a joke of it

Curtis is one of 16 children involved in the case, which has made legal history.

Last week, a court decided their underdeveloped hands and feet were caused by poisonous waste from a disused steelworks, which the families argued wasn't cleared up properly.

The steelworks in Corby closed in 1980, but the families claimed its clean-up was so badly handled it exposed pregnant women, like Curtis' mum, to poisons which harmed their unborn children.

Council's decision

After the court's ruling, the council is still deciding what to do next.

They might go back to court to appeal against the court's decision or they could agree to give the families compensation money.

But all Curtis wants is an apology.

"I am not interested in winning any money," he said. "I just want them to say sorry and move on."