Advising with empathy and experience

Teenager died after Priory 'failings'.


A severely anorexic teenage girl was released by The Priory Hospital Altrincham, without her parents being told that she was at risk of suicide, only five days before she walked in front of a train.

An inquest into the death of 15-year-old Pippa McManus found the private hospital also failed to organise proper aftercare for the teenager, who took her own life.

A jury at stockport Coroner’s court heard how on the day she died, Pippa had argued with her family about excessive use of the gym and warned she was going to kill herself.

The court found staff at The Priory Hospital Altrincham had developed “no relationship” with people who could have helped safeguard the teen once she was released, despite having cared for her for a year.

Her parents have said failings in their daughter’s care were “quite disturbing” and were responsible for her death.

Following the argument in 2015, Pippa McManus walked away from the family home in Frances Avenue, Gatley, to Gatley Railway Station, Cheadle, where she stepped in front of a train.

The jury criticised the planning for her discharge, and found there was "inadequate engagement of community support" for Miss McManus’ family and a "failure to implement a care plan in a timely manner.” They did not, however, criticise the decision to release her itself.

The Priory is one of the UK's largest mental health providers and has multi-million pound contracts with the NHS.

Speaking after the hearing, Pippa's mother Marie said: "We believe the failings of our daughter's care, from beginning to end, resulted in her death. The tear in the thread of our family will never be mended. Pip spent her last three years fighting against against anorexia, malnutrition, depression and self-harm.

"Too many of our children are dying from anorexia. Effective treatment is needed more quickly, and if this had been available to our beautiful daughter, maybe she would still be alive today."

The teenager’s father, Jim McManus, said his daughter had been “failed” and describe some of the care she had received as “quite disturbing.”

He said: “It's not the ending we want, however the jury came up with the right answers.

"It was quite deflating to see all the goodwill for her to build her weight back up - she desperately wanted to get her life back on track - as the illness would suddenly, at a flick of a finger, pull her back down to earth again. She was a lovely girl, plenty of fun. Always active."

Hospital Director of the Priory Hospital Altrincham, Paula Stanford, said: “Our heartfelt sympathies are with Pip’s family and we will now carefully consider the findings of the jury.”