A daughter has refused to allow her mum to sit in a care home corridor alone on Christmas Day this year despite coronavirus risks.

Kathryn Longden suffers from chronic lung disease and her family fear this could be her last Christmas.

Daughter Kimberley Ryan says her mum - who is on the high-risk 'shielding' list - has spent the last eight months largely confined to her basement bedroom at Fairfield View care home in Audenshaw.

Told two years ago by doctors that Kathryn, 71, was unlikely to survive beyond 18 months, Kimberley fears that this Christmas could be the last opportunity for her mum to spend time with the family, including her five-year-old granddaughter Harriet.

Kimberley claims care home staff have told her government guidelines stipulate that Kathryn, who relies on a 24-hour oxygen supply, cannot leave the home at Christmas. They have offered instead to set up a table in the basement corridor for Christmas dinner, where Kathryn could be joined by a few other residents.

But Kathryn's family is determined to make Christmas special for her - and Kimberley has contacted Tameside Council's social care department for a risk assessment in a bid to make it happen.

She said: "I'll be very very surprised if my mum makes another Christmas just because of how poorly she's been throughout the year.

Kathryn Longden suffers from chronic lung disease and her family fear this could be her last Christmas

"Over my dead body will she sit in a corridor in the basement for Christmas Day."

She added: "They say it's for my mum's wellbeing but where in that has anybody taken into account her mental health? My mum says she feels trapped, it makes her anxious. She looked healthy in February, now she looks so old.

"She's been in a dingy basement room for months. It's so dark she has to have the light on all day.

"I know bringing her home should be exceptional circumstances only but what's more exceptional that not knowing how much longer she has left to live? I just want to make it special for her.

"We would all be willing to get tested - I will pay for testing."

Kimberley's decision to take matters into her own hands comes as public health and social care directors warn care homes not to use rapid tests for visitors amid  'chaos, confusion and safety concerns' around the government's roll-out.

The pregnancy-style tests, which come with the promise of testing two relatives per resident every week, had been heralded by the Government as the gateway to Christmas visits.

However, the Government has been sending them directly to care homes - bypassing public health and social care departments amid concerns they will not be used properly if staff are not trained and protocols established.

In the meantime, thousands of families like Kimberley's are left in limbo.

Care home residents and workers are due to be given the vaccine first

Kathryn is a retired children's nurse who worked at Duchess of York Hospital and also in care homes. Before lockdown, she saw her daughter two to three times a day.

But the pandemic has changed her life.

Kimberley says her mum has left her basement room just a handful of times over the last eight months.

Aside from trips to the bathroom, she's been taken for fresh air at the basement fire escape and once to sit with the other residents upstairs.

The protracted period in her room has exacerbated her mum's tendency to agoraphobia - a fear of being in situations where escape might be difficult - triggering a reluctance to leave her room now even when she can.

She said: "Before lockdown she was happy to leave her room and would sit with the other residents.

"Lockdown has just been devastating. In eight months she's been out of her room just a few times except for a bath.

"One day she went upstairs when shielding was first lifted and she's been to the basement fire exit for fresh air.

"We've been allowed window visits but sometimes we're allowed and sometimes we're not."

Kimberley says Kathryn became extremely ill in the summer and, in her confused state, refused to be treated by paramedics.

In what she says is the only contact she's had with her mum since the start of lockdown, Kimberley was allowed into her room in full PPE to persuade her to accept treatment.

Sadly for Kimberley, the fight for her mother's welfare is bringing back memories of the death of her son Cameron, who died aged six from a brain tumour.

She added: "It's the same helpless feeling. I was a young mum and I felt helpless, it was out of my control, a continuous fight for what's right and what she's entitled to - for her human rights.

"There are people in care homes who haven't got somebody to fight for them, who haven't got family. What about them?"

A spokesman from Fairfield View care home said: "We are following government guidelines in liaising with Public Health within the local authority."

A Tameside Council spokesman said: "The national restrictions and guidelines for care homes are in place to protect residents and keep them safe but we do understand and have empathy and compassion for families who have not been able to see their loved ones for so long now.

"With regards to the situation in question, legally this is a grey area as indeed the regulations allow for bubbles of three families to meet up for Christmas.

"However we do have to be mindful of the risk that we are exposing the resident to and the subsequent risk of introducing infection back into the home. Our priority has to be first and foremost to keep people safe but we do want to do everything we can to facilitate loved ones to safely see each other where possible.

"We are in the process of exploring possible testing options that may allow some visiting and visitors at local care homes.

"In the meantime, since the start of lockdown in March care homes have taken steps to try to keep families in touch, such as setting up Whatsapp for residents and using Face time. Some, including Fairfield View, are also setting up covid-safe visiting pods to allow loved ones to see each other."

The Department for Health and Social care has been contacted for comment.