Archie Battersbee's mum raised the alarm with 'startling screams' after incident

Hearing - Paul Battersbee, Hollie Dance and other member of Archie's family <i>(Image: PA)</i>
Hearing - Paul Battersbee, Hollie Dance and other member of Archie's family (Image: PA)

A MAN rushed to attempt to help Archie Battersbee after hearing his mother’s “startling” screams for help, an inquest heard.

Joseph Norton was carrying out work on his mother’s home - next door to where Archie lived - when he heard Hollie Dance’s screams as she discovered her son unconscious.

He described finding Archie with a “pale face” and “blue lips” in a written statement read yesterday during the inquest into the 12-year-old boy’s death.

The statement said: “I heard screaming, it was startling and alarmed me. It was a serious scream and I saw Hollie screaming for help.

“As I got to the door I saw Archie just a few feet away, his face was pale, his eyes were open and his lips were blue.

“Later when I did CPR he was bare chested. I knelt down and tested for a pulse but I couldn’t find one.

“Hollie was making a lot of noise and crying. I called 999 and asked for an ambulance and I was told to go back and do CPR.

“Hollie had been trying but didn’t know how to do it, I followed the instructions. Two paramedics came into the house and then a further ambulance crew.


“I was trapped in the hallway and was asked to help clear space. It was very traumatic to be involved with.”

Catherine Bennett, operations manager, at the ambulance service attended Archie’s home on the day April 7.

She said: “When I arrived there was a child on the floor on his back who has gone into cardiac arrest. There was no abnormal marks to his neck and nothing obvious to show massive trauma.

“He was pale in colour and I started basic life support and chest compressions. There were no signs of head injury.”

Miss Dance has criticised the decision to not take her child directly to a London hospital previously.

However, Ms Bennett insisted there was no plan to take the child to a London hospital and initial treatment would have been the same regardless of which hospital he attended.

She said: “My recollection is that there was no discussion about taking him to a London hospital. The fact that he was still in cardiac arrest would mean the response of treatment would be the same whether at Southend Hospital or a London hospital.”