A sick baby left fitting for almost an hour before an ambulance got her to Bradford Royal Infirmary had to be resuscitated on the way, her mother claims.

And on arrival at the hospital, Sophi Boocock, of Hirst Wood, Shipley, said there was no ward bed for her daughter because of nursing shortages Miss Boocock, 22, said the experience was “a nightmare” and could have cost her one-year-old daughter’s life.

She claims she had to wait almost 20 panic-stricken minutes for paramedics to arrive after little Leyla started to have a fit and turn blue at their home.

Yorkshire Ambulance Service has apologised for the delay but says its log shows the ambulance took 11 minutes to arrive.

The tot, who is epileptic and has twice-daily medication for the condition, was fighting for her life in the ambulance en route to Bradford Royal Infirmary when she stopped breathing and had to be resuscitated, according to her mum.

Miss Boocock said she had made the first emergency call for help at 10.35pm on April 11 and feared it would be too late to save her daughter, who was struggling to breathe.

She said: “Leyla’s had fits before and the ambulance has always been here in about five minutes with a fast responder usually before them. This time there was no fast response and it was about 20 minutes before the ambulance came.

“I asked why it was taking so long and the operator said she was sorry but it was because they were busy. She said they didn’t have enough ambulances.”

“No-one should have to wait that long in an emergency, especially not a dangerously-sick child. When a person is fitting after five minutes they are in the danger zone and the longer they are left to fit, the more damage is happening to the brain. All together my daughter was left fitting for almost an an hour.”

Paul Mudd, locality director of emergency operations (West Yorkshire) at Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust, apologised to Miss Boocock for the distress caused.

But he added: “One of our 999 call takers remained on the line with Miss Boocock, monitoring her daughter’s condition, until the arrival of the ambulance 11 minutes later.”

At the BRI, Leyla was seen in A&E Resuscitation before being sent to the Paediatric Assessment Room where the family were left waiting about four hours before a temporary cot was found.

Miss Boocock said: “After everything we’d been through with the ambulance, there wasn’t even a bed for her on the children’s ward. It wasn’t that they didn’t have enough beds because they did, they had 28 beds on Ward 16 but only enough staff to look after 14 so they were re-directing patients to Airedale and York. Leyla was eventually found a bed later that morning until she was discharged by a consultant later that day.

“I’ve written to my MP Philip Davies and will be contacting the BRI and the Yorkshire Ambulance Trust to complain.”

A BRI spokesman said: “For short periods last week children’s ward 17 had a reduced number of beds available due to short-term staff sickness.”