Archie Battersbee dies in hospital: What happened to him, when did he die & how did mum Hollie Dance respond?

Archie Battersbee did not regain conciousness since his mother found him unresponsive in the family home in April.

Twelve year-old Archie Battersbee passed away in the Royal London Hospital at 12.15pm on Saturday August 6, 2022.

Archie’s mother, Hollie Dance, confirmed her son had passed away when she addressed the media outside the hospital in Whitechapel on Saturday afternoon.

“I would just like to say I am the proudest mum in the world.

“He was such a beautiful little boy. He fought right until the very end and I am so proud to be his mum.”

One of Archie’s relatives, Ella Carter, described the 12 year-old’s final moments describing them as “barbaric”.

“His stats remained completely stable for two hours until they completely removed ventilation and he went completely blue,” said a very tearful Ms. Carter.

“There is absolutely nothing dignified about watching a family member or a child suffocate.

“No family should ever have to go through what we have been through – it is barbaric,” she said tearfully

Earlier on Friday, the High Court in London said to overturn a High Court ruling and allow their 12 year-old son to be transferred from hospital to a hospice, where they expect he will die, was not in their son’s best interests.

The appeal was submitted on Friday and was considered by three Court of Appeal judges, the President of the Family Division Sir Andrew McFarlane, Lady Justice King and Lord Justice Moylan.

The three judges based their decision on written statements as opposed to an actual physical hearing.

Earlier on Friday morning, a High Court judge in London rejected the request made by parents Hollie Dance and Paul Battersbee to say goodbye to their son in a hospice and not the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel.

The ruling was delivered shortly after 11:30am on Friday morning.

Mrs Justice Theis said: “Archie’s best interests must remain at the core of any conclusions reached by this court.

“When considering the wishes of the family, why those wishes are held, the facilities at the hospice, what Archie is likely to have wanted, … the risks involved in a transfer … and the increasing fragility of his medical condition, I am satisfied that when looking at the balancing exercise again his best interests remain as set out (in the ruling of July 15), that he should remain at the hospital when treatment is withdrawn.

“It would most likely hasten the premature deterioration the family wish to avoid, even with full intensive care equipment and staff on the journey.”

Mrs. Justice Theis added: “The circumstances outlined by Dr F of the physical arrangements at the hospital and the arrangements that can be made will ensure that Archie’s best interest will remain the focus of the final arrangements to enable him peacefully and privately to die in the embrace of the family he loved.

“The parents in the email from their solicitors on August 2 confirmed, in principle, their willingness to co-operate in these arrangements.

“I return to where I started, recognising the enormity of what lays ahead for Archie’s parents and the family.

“Their unconditional love and dedication to Archie is a golden thread that runs through this case.

“I hope now Archie can be afforded the opportunity for him to die in peaceful circumstances, with the family who meant so much to him as he clearly does to them.”

Archie’s mother and father appealed to the European Court of Human Rights a second time but they were again knocked back.

A High Court order made in July requires that Archie remains at the Royal London Hospital while his treatment is withdrawn.

Ms. Dance discovered her son unconscious at the family home in Southend, Essex on April 7, 2022.

Archie was admitted to the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel and has not regained consciousness since.

In June the High Court in London heard from a medical specialist, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, that the damage to Archie’s brain was so serious that “we believe that it is very likely that he is brain-stem dead.”

High Court judge, Mrs Justice Arbuthno’s subsequently ruled that keeping Archie on life-support was not in his best interests.

Archie’s parents were then permitted to challenge the High Court ruling in the Court of Appeal in London.

Three Court of Appeal justices Sir Andrew McFarlane, Lady Justice King and Lord Justice Peter Jackson upheld the appeal brought before them by Archie’s parents saying that the evidence should be reviewed by a different High Court judge.

Archie’s parents also appealed to the United Nations and the ECHR however the UK courts rejected a request made by the UN to postpone the withdrawal of the life support treatment.

The ECHR dismissed the claim within hours of receiving it on Wednesday morning.

Archie Battersbee.
Archie Battersbee.
Archie Battersbee.

What happened to Archie Battersbee?

On April 7, 2022, Hollie Dance, found her son, Archie, unconscious in the family home and with a ligature around his neck.

Ms. Dance believes her son lost consciousness while doing an “internet challenge”.

Archie was admitted to the Royal London Hospital and has not regained consciousness.

What is the TikTok/blackout challenge and why is it dangerous?

According to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention in the USA these so-called blackout challenges have resulted in the deaths of more than 80 people.

The challenge encourages individuals to hold their breath until the blackout.

The concept was first heard of back in 2008 but with the popularity of TikTok amongst younger people, it has reemerged again in recent years.

Archie Battersbee.
Archie Battersbee.
Archie Battersbee.

How did medical experts assess Archie’s condition?

The doctors who treated Archie said the machines whim alive should be turned off.

In June, doctors told the High Court in London that Archie is “very likely” to be “brain-stem dead”.

A specialist told the court that tests revealed no “discernible” brain activity, but revealed “significant areas of tissue necrosis”.

The specialist added: “We believe that it is very likely that he is brain-stem dead.”