Schoolgirl whose mother was murdered in their family home to appear in documentary

Speaking out: Kirstie, 14, is pictured with her aunt Joanne.
Speaking out: Kirstie, 14, is pictured with her aunt Joanne.

A schoolgirl whose mother was murdered in their family home will speak about her experiences in a new documentary.

Kirstie was just 12 years old when her stepfather, Paul Hemming, beat her mother, 31-year-old Natalie Hemming, to death in their home, before dumping her body in woodland.

Now 14, the schoolgirl lives with her aunt in Wakefield, and is training to be a domestic violence ambassador at her school.

In a new BBC documentary, to air next week, she speaks for the first time about her experiences as a child in a violent home.

Her aunt, Joanne, said that the filming process had helped Kirstie to find her voice.

She said: “It has been incredible. She has been saying for a long time that throughout the whole court process she felt that she didn’t have a voice.

“When we did a previous documentary, she wasn’t allowed to be in it, and she felt really strongly that she has been erased from all that, even though it was her mum.

“As adults we don’t appreciate how much our children see and hear and take on board.

“The things that these children saw and heard in the home are going to massively affect them for the rest of their lives.”

Joanne said that it is too easy to write off domestic violence as something that goes on behind closed doors, and hopes that the documentary will encourage people to “keep the conversation going”.

Behind Closed Doors: Through The Eyes Of The Child will air on BBC 2 at 9pm on Wednesday, 6 February.