Child in Bolton left with horrendous burns after touching ‘Britain’s most dangerous plant’

Daisy Jackson Daisy Jackson - 15th June 2022

Parents have been warned to watch out for ‘Britain’s most dangerous plant’ after a child in Bolton was left with burns.

The four-year-old ended up in hospital with second-degree burns from coming into contact with Giant Hogweed in Longsight Park.

A photo shows the poor tot’s hand covered in large blisters.

Parents are now being urged to teach their children how to recognise the dangerous plant so they don’t encounter it while playing in parks and woodland.

The sap from the invasive Giant Hogweed can cause photodermatitis or photosensitivity, meaning the skin can’t protect itself from sunlight, leading to blistering, pigmentation and scarring.

The burns sustained from the contact with Giant Hogweed. Credit: Hardy Mill Primary School

It’s characterised by its thick, bristly stems which often have purple splotches, its enormous height (up to five metres), and large jagged leaves.

A statement from Hardy Mill Primary School said: “One of our children has sadly been in contact with this plant over the half term break and ended up at the hospital with second degree burns.


“Please look out for this plant in your garden and when out and about with you children. We have been informed that this plant is definitely growing in Longsight Park.

“It would be helpful to show your children what this plant looks like so they can avoid coming into contact with it.”

Read more: Warnings issued as ‘Britain’s most dangerous plant’ thrives around Greater Manchester


A spokesperson for Bolton Council said: “We haven’t had any reports of Giant Hogweed in Longsight Park and it isn’t somewhere we’ve had it in the past. However we will send an officer to the area to check.

“Our policy is to immediately treat all instances of accessible Giant Hogweed on our land to remove its presence.

“We are also currently carrying out a treatment on council land where Giant Hogweed was reported in the past, in order to limit its spread this year.

“We will continue to remove any accessible Giant Hogweed on council land as soon as it is reported, and would like to encourage the public to report any instances of what they believe to be Giant Hogweed on council land to [email protected] or by calling 01204 336632.”

Featured image: Wikimedia Commons