Archie Battersbee: judges deny appeal over decision to stop life support | UK news

The parents of a 12-year-old boy who suffered a “catastrophic” brain injury have been refused permission to appeal against a decision to end his life support treatment.

Hollie Dance and Paul Battersbee, from Southend in Essex, have been fighting for their son Archie to continue receiving treatment for as long as his heart is beating. But on Monday the court of appeal ruled there were no grounds for them to challenge the decision by a high court judge 10 days ago that continuing Archie’s treatment was “futile”.

Edward Devereux QC, representing Archie’s parents, had asked for the decision to be adjourned as the 12-year-old’s father had been taken to hospital on Monday morning with a suspected heart attack or stroke. The court heard he had previously had a heart attack last year.

Sir Andrew McFarlane, sitting with two other judges, said he was “extremely sympathetic” to Paul Battersbee’s situation but it was not in Archie’s interests to delay the decision.

“After careful thought, we refuse permission to appeal,” said McFarlane. He then adjourned the hearing and said he would set out his reasons later on Monday.

Before the decision was given, Devereux indicated that Archie’s parents might go back to the high court to seek another hearing based on fresh evidence. He said Dance had seen her son attempt to take breaths on Friday and Saturday.

Archie sustained brain damage about three months ago when, his mother believes, he choked while taking part in a viral social media trend known as the “blackout challenge”.

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