An old woman was left unconscious after attacking her daughter with a frozen chicken during a row over who was to prepare the evening meal, a court was told yesterday.

Eliza Grose, 84, and her daughter Marcina Collins, 55, could not agree who should get up from watching Who Wants to be a Millionaire? Exeter Crown Court was told that after Mrs. Grose struck the first blows with the rock-hard frozen chicken and a rolling pin, Collins retaliated with a meat tenderiser, hitting her mother repeatedly over the head and fracturing her skull. Collins, of Carbis Bay in Cornwall, hit her so hard she spent 11 days in intensive care and almost four months in hospital.

The court was told that Mrs. Grose tried to have the case abandoned and a more serious charge of attempted murder was dropped after she wrote to a note to the judge saying: "I do not want my daughter prosecuted. As a mother I cannot find it in my heart to do so, I hope you understand." 

Judge Graham Cottle told Collins: "This was something totally out of your normal character." I do not know exactly what it was that drove you to do what you did and perhaps you do not either." Collins admitted causing grievous bodily harm and was given a 12-month jail sentence, suspended for two years.