A YOUNG backpacker who became a quadriplegic after a quad-bike accident while working on a dairy farm in Australia has been awarded almost £7million in compensation.

A Tasmanian court ruling has brought to an end a landmark trial concerning the catastrophic accident suffered by Holly Raper, 27, from Chorley.

Holly, who, after four-and-a-half years, is still in a minimally conscious state, received a serious head injury as a result of a quad-bike accident while she was working on a farm in Australia in December 2011, during her gap year.

She was 23 at the time of the incident.

The trial concluded that she was not properly trained or given a helmet prior to the accident. The bike also had faulty brakes and steering.

Her parents sued the farm owners based on the severity of her injuries, her need for lifelong 24-hour care and the potential loss of income.

The award of £6,811,927 will meet the lifelong needs of Holly including adapted accommodation, transport, care and ongoing therapy and medical care as she continues her fight to regain the ability to communicate with the world around her.

Her parents, Chris and Elaine Raper issued a statement at end of the trial.

They said: “We are relieved that the long legal process is at an end and that Holly will be able to continue to receive the support she needs now and into the future.

“Our thanks go to all Holly’s friends, family and past colleagues for their love and support since her accident and to the medical professionals both in Tasmania and also the Royal Preston Hospital who have, and continue to, take such good care of our daughter.

“We also wish to thank Judge Stephen Estcourt for his judgment and the legal teams both in the UK and Australia who have spoken so professionally on behalf of Holly and helped secure her future care.

“With this matter now concluded, our energies can be solely directed on helping our daughter in her ongoing recovery.”

Peter Rigby, from Fletchers Solicitors, who have been supporting the family in the UK since 2012, hoped the judgment would allow Holly and her family to begin putting firm plans in place for the future. Peter said: “The lives of Holly and her parents, Chris and Elaine, were turned upside down in December 2011.

“Since that time they have dedicated their lives to giving Holly the best care possible.

“This judgment allows them to get the professional support, treatment and equipment Holly needs and for her to have the best possible quality of life.”