Action taken to avoid more tragedies after North Yorkshire teen’s death

The inquest into Alex Paylor's death was held at Harrogate Magistrates' Court on Thursday.
The inquest into Alex Paylor's death was held at Harrogate Magistrates' Court on Thursday.
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SOCIAL SERVICES chiefs say important lessons have been learnt following the death of 13-year-old Alex Paylor.

An open verdict was recorded in an inquest into the death of the teenager, who was found hanging at his foster parents’ home near Ripon on June 2 last year.

Alex’s grandmother Lorainne Holliday raised concerns about his mental health with social services before he died, Thursday’s inquest heard, and coroner Rob Turnbull said it seemed the opportunity for a referral to mental health services was lost.

Mr Turnbull said this should have been explored more fully.

In a statement yesterday, Professor Nick Frost, chairman of the North Yorkshire Safeguarding Children Board said an independent review was carried out into the events surrounding Alex’s death.

Prof Frost said: “The Review identifies six key themes, including awareness of the use of social media by young people and ensuring that information is effectively shared by professionals. These actions have been brought together as an Action Plan which is currently being fully implemented and closely monitored by the Board.

“The Board remains fully committed to learning from tragedies such as Alex’s death to ensure the children and young people of North Yorkshire remain as safe as possible in the future. Such tragic events are thankfully rare but we remain collectively determined to do all we can to ensure it is not repeated.”

Alex, who was taken from his mother by social services in 2011, became unsettled when she contacted him after two-and-a-half years, the inquest heard.