Nelson woman fronting Coventry protest for starved Daniel Pelka

DEDICATED: Nicci Astin (S)
DEDICATED: Nicci Astin (S)
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A dedicated Nelson woman is today fronting a protest in Coventry for little Daniel Pelka – who died in March, 2012 after being brutally starved and beaten by his mother and her partner.

Nicci Astin (37), of Hawarden Street, has been campaigning against child abuse for the past five years.

With the support of other protestors, her latest venture has seen her launch a Facebook page called “Justice For Daniel Pelka”.

It has received nearly 8,000 “likes” and has managed to raise enough money to send flowers to the four-year-old’s funeral. A headstone is also set to be installed in Poland, where the youngster’s natural father lives, and plans are under way for a memorial in Coventry.

Mrs Astin, whose protest was due to start at 1pm at Speakers’ Corner in the city centre, hopes her work will raise awareness and also clamp down on any failings of the authorities. She went to the event armed with placards, banners and a megaphone.

She said: “In all the serious cases there are failings that could have been prevented. Every single time they are saying that lessons will be learned – and quite obviously they are not being.

“After Daniel there was Kiana Williams, and I have just recently read through the serious case review and it could have been a carbon copy.

“Five years ago I would have been like anybody else. I would have watched the news and turned to my friend and said ‘what a shame’, I can’t do that now.”

Mrs Astin has received plenty of support from her family and friends, including from her mum Lynne Moorhouse, of Townhouse Road, Nelson, who said: “She works really hard. I am proud of her – she is doing a marvellous thing.”