A retired accountant jailed for stabbing her husband to death has lost a bid to bring a challenge against her conviction at the Court of Appeal.

Penelope Jackson killed her husband of 24 years, David, 78, at their home in Parsonage Road, Berrow, Somerset, in February 2021.

She denied murder but pleaded guilty to manslaughter – saying she had lost control following years of physical and emotional abuse at the hands of her husband.

Bristol Crown Court previously heard that Jackson repeatedly refused to help the victim when the operator asked her to take steps such as apply pressure to the wound or throw him a towel to try to stem the bleeding.

She was convicted of murder and handed a sentence of life in prison with a minimum term of 18 years in October 2021.

Earlier this month, lawyers for Jackson made a bid for the go-ahead to challenge her murder conviction at the Court of Appeal in London.

They argued that the trial judge failed to properly direct the jury about “the individual and cumulative nature of matters which went to the gravity of the trigger for the purpose of the partial defence of loss of control”.

Burnham and Highbridge Weekly News: David Jackson, a retired army officer.David Jackson, a retired army officer. (Image: Family handout)

Describing her marriage, Jackson previously told jurors: “I didn’t know if I was waking up to nice David or nasty David.”

She also said her husband was often violent following arguments.

However, Jane Calverley, Mr Jackson’s daughter from his first marriage, from whom he was estranged, accused the defendant of being the abuser in the relationship.

Jackson’s lawyers also argued that the trial judge was wrong to release a footage of her 999 call and arrest to the media during the trial as witnesses who were yet to give evidence may have seen it.

During the trial, jurors were told that, in an 18-minute phone call to emergency services, Jackson told the call handler her husband, a retired lieutenant colonel, was “bleeding to death with any luck” on their kitchen floor.

Burnham and Highbridge Weekly News: A CCTV still of Penelope Jackson after she was arrested in Berrow.A CCTV still of Penelope Jackson after she was arrested in Berrow. (Image: Avon and Somerset Police)

In a judgment on Wednesday, Mrs Justice Cutts, sitting with Lord Chief Justice Lord Burnett and Mr Justice Butcher, dismissed Jackson’s bid to bring an appeal.

Mrs Justice Cutts said: “We find ourselves unable to accept that this applicant’s conviction is arguably unsafe.

“We accept the submission that a loss of control does not need to be sudden for the defence to succeed and that it can be triggered by the cumulative impact of a pattern of events, specifically in a relationship which has been characterised by coercion and control.

“That was plainly understood by the judge, who directed the jury accordingly.”

She added: “He could not, in our view, have been clearer in telling the jury of the defence case that the applicant had lost her control against the background of a coercive and controlling relationship.”

The judges continued that the trial judge had properly summarised the evidence about Jackson’s relationship and her evidence about losing her self-control.

“It was ultimately a matter for the jury as to whether they accepted that evidence and, if so, having been properly directed, whether this amounted to a defence of loss of control,” Mrs Justice Cutts said.

By Jess Glass, PA