Cotswold Geotechnical Holdings is the first corporate entity to be convicted under the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007. As the corporate entity was a small one, the proceedings did not answer many of the questions concerning how the Act will be applied to large corporate entities. In particular, how, in practice, the court will approach the question of identifying who within a large organisation is to be identified as a "senior manager". This is central to the new offence as senior management failure must be a substantial element in the corporate entity's breach of its duty of care.
Cotswold was described in court as being in a "parlous financial state" and therefore the fine of £385,000 indicates that very high fines may be imposed. Mr Justice Field in his sentencing remarks observed that a larger fine would cause the company to be liquidated and that people would lose their jobs. He added "It may well be that the fine in terms of its payment will put this company into liquidation. If that is the case it is unfortunate but unavoidable, but it is a consequence of the serious breach".