Dementia patient's antique ring vanishes from hospital safe

Antique ring Image copyright Holpin Family
Image caption The ring was given as a gift from the family who Mrs Holpin worked for

The bereaved son of a dementia patient is appealing for the return of his mother's antique ring which disappeared from a hospital safe.

Angelina Holpin, from Tytherington, was transferred from St Martin's in Bath to Callington Road, Bristol, in December

Her son Gary said: "Although she had dementia and her communication skills were very poor, it was one of the first things she alerted me to."

The hospital trust has said it tried to find the ring but without success.

'Very distressed'

Mrs Holpin died two weeks after the hospital transfer on 14 December.

The ring was worn behind her wedding band.

Mr Holpin said: "All we know is that within the first couple of days of her being in hospital, it had been taken off."

He added his mother was very distressed over not having her ring, as much of her other jewellery had been stolen in a burglary.

Image copyright Holpin Family
Image caption Angelina moved from Italy to South Gloucestershire in the 1950s where she found work as a maid and housekeeper

She was given the ring from the family she worked for as maid for several decades, having moved from Italy to South Gloucestershire in the 1950s in search of work.

Both hospitals are run by Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership Trust (AWP).

A spokesman said: "Our staff advise patients that personal valuables should not be kept on the ward.

"If a person is not able to make an informed decision our staff would not remove personal possessions if this would cause distress.

"We make provision for valuables to be stored safely but we cannot be responsible for items that remain in the possession of individuals."

The trust took the matter seriously, they added, and a thorough search was made without success.

The missing ring has been reported to the police.

Image copyright Holpin Family
Image caption Mrs Holpin died in early January at Callington Road Hospital in Bristol

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