Two former beauty therapists, who sued Virgin Atlantic after they developed repetitive strain injuries from giving massages to businessmen, have won 300,000 pounds in compensation.
Jayne Evans, 40, and Michelle Hindmarsh, 32, gave Shiatsu treatments to first class passengers in the airline's Terminal 3 Clubhouse at Heathrow, the Daily Mail reported.
AdvertisementMost of the pair's customers, who were always fully clothed, were men, whose massages required heavier hand and finger pressure involving particular strain on the thumbs.
The High Court in London heard that the women were left "unable to peel a carrot" due to the pain they developed in their wrists, shoulders and back after working long shifts.
Both had to give up their masseuse careers, for which they had trained since school, and were left "devastated".
Virgin Atlantic accepted liability but disputed the amount of compensation due.
Evans, from Ruislip, Middlesex, was awarded 230,972 pounds, a sum which includes damages for "anxiety and depression" caused by the loss of her dream job.
She now has a clerical role in Virgin's cargo division, which she finds "very considerably less congenial".
Hindmarch, from Banstead, Surrey, was awarded 69,458 pounds after she quickly found better-paid work in a different field.
The judge said she was "a woman of determination and fortitude who was making the best of her situation" and dismissed the suggestion that she was exaggerating her symptoms.
The women's symptoms, the court was told, were caused by working over-long shifts, and by using Shiatsu pressure-point techniques with heavy pressure and at fast pace.