AN 83-YEAR-OLD woman with dementia was forced to lie on a cold pavement for more than two hours while waiting for an ambulance.

The pensioner, who suffers from dementia, was with her daughter when she collapsed on the floor.

The incident happened in Church Road, Hove, near the junction with Seafield Road, at about 10.20am yesterday.

An ambulance was called immediately but a crew did not turn up until 12.30pm.

She was taken to the accident and emergency department at the Royal Sussex County Hospital where it emerged she had suffered severe bruising.

People rallied around, including shop staff and residents who brought out blankets and pillows to try to keep the woman warm.

Martyn Palmer, 61, of Pembroke Crescent, Hove, said: “A doctor was going past and he thought she might have broken her hip so we were told we shouldn’t move her.

“She was in pain and everyone was very concerned about how she had to wait so long.

“It is incredibly shocking that an 83-year-old has to lie on a stone-cold pavement in the middle of January for more than two hours.”

A spokesman for South East Coast Ambulance Trust said the call was classed as low priority as it was not immediately life-threatening or serious based on the information received.

The national target for response times for this type of category is up to two hours.

The spokesman said: “We continue to be extremely busy meaning calls which are not in our highest category of call may wait longer.

“We appreciate and are sorry that this patient will no doubt have been very uncomfortable and in pain while waiting for us to attend.”