Archie’s mother heartbroken over failed attempt to delay life support shutdown

Archie Battersby’s mother called the rejection of her offer to delay turning off her son’s life support system “another heartbreaking development” and suggested the legal battle had come to an end.

Ollie Dance and Archie’s father Paul Battersby filed an application with the European Court of Human Rights, but it was rejected Wednesday night.

The 12-year-old has been in a coma since being found unconscious in April and is being kept alive by a combination of medical interventions, including ventilation and medication, at the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel, east London.


Archie Battersby with his mother Holly Dance (Family Handout/PA)

His parents’ application to the Strasbourg court came just hours before the Barts Health NHS Trust was expected to turn off their son’s life support on Wednesday morning.

But shortly after 6:30 p.m., the European Court of Justice said it denied the parents’ request, adding that it would not “intervene in national court decisions authorizing the withdrawal of (Archie’s) life-sustaining treatment.”

It has not yet been confirmed from Barts Health NHS Trust when life support will be terminated.

Following the European Court’s decision, in a statement released through Christian Concern, Ms Dance said: “This is yet another heartbreaking development in our fight for Archie’s right to life.”

She reiterated that they had been contacted by doctors in Japan and Italy about her son’s condition, adding, “Why can’t we give him a chance?”

Ms. Dance reiterated her vow to “fight to the end for Archie’s right to life” and said the family wanted to put the boy in hospice, “but the hospital said we couldn’t do it despite previous promises.”


Archie Battersby’s parents have been involved in a number of lawsuits over their son’s condition (Hollie Dance/PA)

Minutes later, when reporters asked the hospital if the defeat was something else, she said, “This is the end. It was the last one, right? Once again, our country has failed a 12-year-old child.”

UK Supreme Court judges have previously said they have “great sympathy” for Archie’s parents, but added that “there is no chance of any meaningful recovery”.

Ms. Dance and Archie’s father, Paul Battersby, has been involved in a number of court cases regarding their son’s fortune.

On April 7, his mother found him unconscious in her home, and he has not regained consciousness since. She believes that he took part in an online challenge.

Ms. Dance and Mr. Battersby were granted an appeals hearing on Monday after the government asked judges to urgently consider a UN committee’s request to continue treating Archie while he considers his case.


Holly Dance vowed to fight for her son “until the end” (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

However, after reviewing the case, three judges refused to delay the withdrawal of life-sustaining treatment after Tuesday afternoon.

They also refused to give permission to appeal their decision to the Supreme Court.

They filed an application directly with the Supreme Court asking for his continued treatment so that the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) could have time to consider their complaint filed last week.

But in denying leave to appeal, a three-judge panel concluded that the Court of Appeal had “made the right decision.”