Archie Battersbee case: Family set to appeal to European court

Undated family handout file photo of Archie Battersbee. A judge is preparing to deliver a ruling on

Archie Battersbee - Credit: Family handout/PA

The parents of a boy being treated at the Royal London Hospital are set to appeal to the European Court of Human Rights after judges in London ruled against them, a lawyer says.

Three Court of Appeal judges on Monday (July 25) upheld a ruling by High Court judge Mr Justice Hayden, who had decided that doctors could lawfully stop treating 12-year-old Archie Battersbee.

Archie suffered brain damage in April and has never regained consciousness.

Doctors treating Archie at the Royal London think he is brain-stem dead and say continued life-support treatment is not in his best interests.

Archie’s parents, Hollie Dance and Paul Battersbee – who both live in Southend, Essex, - had mounted an appeal bid and a lawyer representing them said after the ruling that their fight would continue.

David Foster, based at law firm Moore Barlow, said: “The family maintain that fair and proper balance was not carried out when looking at Archie’s best interests and will appeal directly to the European Court of Human Rights, or the United Nations, as a result.”

Ms Dance had asked appeal judges to adjourn their ruling.

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She said she had seen indications that Archie, who is attached to a ventilator, had twice tried to breathe for himself in the last few days.

Judges were also told that Mr Battersbee had been taken ill outside court before the start of the hearing.

Barrister Edward Devereux QC, who led Archie’s parents’ legal team, told judges that Mr Battersbee, who is in his 50s, had been taken to hospital and was feared to have suffered a heart attack or stroke.

But appeal judges said it was in Archie’s best interests that their ruling was delivered as planned.

Mr Foster said Archie’s parents now also intended to “apply back” to Mr Justice Hayden and ask him to review his decision in the light of the “new evidence” about Archie breathing.

“We will continue this fight,” said Ms Dance after the appeal ruling.

“We are discussing options with our lawyers.”

Reporting by Press Association.