Retired nurse arrested for trying to take 97-year-old mum out of Yorkshire care home

The retired nurse arrested for trying to take her 97-year-old mum out of a care home has pleaded: "Please let me look after her."

By Grace Hammond
Thursday, 5th November 2020, 10:17 am
Updated Thursday, 5th November 2020, 10:20 am
Leandra Ashton, her grandmother Tina Thornborough and mother Ylenia Angeli
Leandra Ashton, her grandmother Tina Thornborough and mother Ylenia Angeli

Gran-of-eight Ylenia Angeli, 73, said she was 'terrified' she would never see her mum Tina Thornborough, who is suffering from dementia, again due to the fresh lockdown.

Ylenia forced her way into the Northgate Care Home in Market Weighton on Tuesday with a bunch of roses and wheeled her mum out without permission from staff and against Covid regulations.

Shortly afterwards she was detained by officers from Humberside Police who were called by staff at the home.

Leandra Ashton and grandmother Tina Thornborough

Distressing footage of the arrest was put on social media by Mrs Angeli's daughter Leandra Ashton, a former Corrie actress.

Mrs Angeli, who was released without charge, said she had not been able to see her mother properly due to the coronavirus pandemic as care home visits have not been allowed.

Ylenia said she was speaking out not just for her mum but "all the elderly people in care" and pleaded for rules around visits to be relaxed for relatives.

She said: "She's 97 with not very long left and with the second lockdown imminent I was terrified about not being able to see her.

Actress Leandra Ashton

"I want to be the one who feeds her, hugs her, puts my arms around her and everything else.

"This would have been and probably will turn out to be our last visit with her for some time.

"If she's at home with me I can see her everyday and give her everything she needs.

"She has deteriorated to the point she needs an awful lot of care and I feel like I'm best-placed to give it to her.

"I'm a trained nurse, I had my own care home so I know what I'm doing.

"I just want to plead with the social care system to please let me take my mum home."

Ylenia's daughter Leandra, 42, posted on Facebook footage of police holding her.

She was later de-arrested and her mum was returned to the care home where she has been resident for almost a year.

Leandra, who played Saskia Larson on the ITV soap between March and June 2016, said the incident happened after she and her mum went for a "window visit".

She insisted the attempted removal of Tina was not pre-mediated and that the pair became emotional when they were told they could not see her without the glass.

She said: "When I saw my nan through the glass I started crying and my mum asked if we could bring nan out so we could see her without the glass.

"They said no but my mum forced entry with a bunch of roses.

"She pushed this woman out of the way quite lightly to get to my nan so she could hug her.

"My mum then wheeled my nan around to see me and wheeled her towards me and she did she just kept going.

"We were outside and we just thought 'let's keep going', it wasn't pre-meditated.

"We got into a car then went to a nearby garden centre car park to gather our thoughts and decide what to do.

"My nan was absolutely fine, she was enjoying it all and just really, really pleased to see us."

Staff at the care home called cops to report an assault and officers swooped on the family and put Ylenia in cuffs.

They released her a short time later when the situation had calmed down and Tina had been returned to care.

Leandra added: "As we were working out what the hell we were going to do the police came and blocked us in.

"We said my mum was happy to go in and talk about the suspected assault but asked if we could take my nan back to my house, even just for 24 hours.

"We just wanted to care for her.

"The officer came back and said they were going to take my nan back to the care home, which is when my mum said 'no'.

"She was refusing to let her go back, she made it clear they would have to arrest her before taking her mother.

"They arrested her on suspicion of assault but then de-arrested her not long after."

Leandra, who described her nan as "incredibly feisty", made an impassioned plea for rules around care home visits to change during the lockdown.

She said: "We're talking about the health of a country and the health of the elderly, we do not need to be focussed on one illness, we need to be focussed on every illness.

"There is nothing that I see anywhere about what we can do to support the immune systems of our elderly.

"I think it is limited and it is flawed. I'm shocked at the narrowness of the debate and how we're dealing with this crisis.

"The incident with my nan shows the level of frustration that so many people around the world are at at this point.

"It's been such an upsetting nine months for us, like many others with elders in care.

"If we can use this as an example of how flawed this system and this approach is and the collateral damage that is being done then that's good.

"We have to give people a quality life, if we're just locking them up and isolating them and leaving them to deteriorate they might as well die.

Assistant Chief Constable Chris Noble of Humberside Police said: "The officer in attendance had to ensure that that everyone was safe and in particular the 97 year old lady who was frail and vulnerable and so made the decision to briefly restrain the 73 year old woman until the situation was calm and under control.

"Officers then returned the elderly lady to the home.

"The 73 year old lady was then immediately unrestrained, de-arrested and allowed to return home with her daughter.

"She and her daughter thanked the officers for the way they had dealt with the incident.

"We understand that this is an emotional and difficult situation for all those involved.

"We sympathise with all families who are in this position and will continue to provide whatever support we can to both parties."

The Northgate Care Home has declined to comment.