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On Monday 14th July 2014 Loraine Coleman Co-ordinator/Schools Project Manager and Tony Powell (Trustee) visited John Masefield High School in Ledbury to present 16 year old Ben Stevens and 16 year old Sam Seaborn with Special Achievement Certificates for saving their 14 year old friend who was in cardiac arrest.

16 year old Rhodri Whittaker will be presented with his Certificates in the Autumn at St Mary’s R.C. High School in Lugwardine.

On the first day of the Easter holidays in April 2014, four teenage boys from Much Marcle were out playing football near to their home. After the game of football one of the boys started to ride his bike home and appeared to fall off the bike onto the field.

His friends ran across to see if he was ok, but he didn’t respond. They initially thought he’d hurt his head, so put him into the recovery position. They then realised his colour had changed, he wasn’t breathing and he was in cardiac arrest; he needed urgent assistance to keep him alive.

Thankfully for this 14 year old boy, his 16 year old friend Ben Stevens had learnt Heartstart Emergency Life Support Skills in School so immediately started CPR. He sent the other two boys 16 year old Sam Seaborn and 16 year old Rhodri Whittaker to call for the ambulance and to get help.

The two boys came back to wait with Ben, and brave Ben kept CPR (cardio pulmonary resuscitation) going for 15 minutes whilst waiting for the ambulance to arrive.

“It must have been a terrifying experience for all the boys, but they were extremely courageous and put their lifesaving skills into action to help save their friend.”

Ben and Sam both attended John Masefield High School in Ledbury and Rhodri Whittaker attended St Mary’s R.C. High School in Lugwardine. Both schools are Heartstart schools that deliver Heartstart how to save a life training to pupils.

Loraine Coleman from Herefordshire Heartstart was so impressed that these 3 teenage boys had saved their friend’s life, she contacted the Schools to ask for permission to recommend them all for Awards.  Loraine recommended that all 3 boys receive a Special Achievement Award Certificate from the British Heart Foundation.

As we deliver the training to the Schools staff to enable them to deliver the skills to their pupils, Loraine also recommended to the Board of Trustees of Herefordshire Heartstart that they also receive a Special Achievement Award Certificate from Herefordshire Heartstart.

Loraine says “Well done to all three boys for keeping a level head, to Ben for performing effective CPR, for Sam and Rhodri for calling the ambulance, running to get help and for going back to help Ben.”

“It must have been a very stressful experience for them all, but they did absolutely the right thing and by doing so they saved their friend’s life.   They should be very proud of what they have done and I’m sure that their friend is very grateful that they were there to help him.”

“On behalf of Herefordshire Heartstart and the British Heart Foundation, we would like to congratulate them all for being so brave and taking the right action in this life threatening emergency.”

“It also gives valuable evidence of how important learning these vital lifesaving skills is in Schools and we are grateful to both Schools for continuing to train their pupils.  I only wish that all Schools in Herefordshire would do the same.  The majority of Schools in Herefordshire are now delivering these skills, but sadly some Schools have not taken up this opportunity, despite it being offered for free.”

“Until the end of last year the Schools Heartstart Project in Herefordshire was funded by the British Heart Foundation.  However this was a time limited grant specifically to target schools in Herefordshire to join the scheme and follow this up with the necessary training.  Every School in Herefordshire has been targeted, so that element of the project has now been completed, with a very high take up of schools now delivering Heartstart in Herefordshire.”

“However we still remain committed to providing support and training to Schools, but now rely on fundraising events and donations for us to continue this work beyond 2014.”

“All donations to support the Schools Heartstart Project goes towards ongoing training which means of thousands of schoolchildren in Herefordshire, will continue to benefit from this vital training and could potentially go on to save a life.

Every penny raised means that more schools staff can be trained and existing staff can be re-trained each year.”

If you can help by making a donation to help support ongoing Heartstart training or by organising a fundraising event or would like your school to teach Heartstart to pupils, please contact Loraine Coleman, Co-ordinator and Schools Project Manager on 0845 60 60 654 or email or write to Mrs Loraine Coleman, Co-ordinator/Project Manager, Herefordshire Heartstart, PO Box 305, HEREFORD HR1 9JD.

The British Heart Foundation still provide the free manikins/training resources for Schools to deliver the training, but please note the British Heart Foundation Heartstart Schools Scheme will close to new applications from 1st September.  Schools that aren’t in the Scheme have been notified.

Both the BHF and Herefordshire Heartstart will continue to support existing Schools in the Scheme after that date and any new School who applies before that date.  If you are interested in setting this up for your School, please contact  Loraine Coleman at Herefordshire Heartstart before 31st July so that the necessary paperwork can be emailed across, as forms need to be submitted in good time.

“We hope that the small number of Schools who haven’t signed up to deliver Heartstart training in their School will now realise the value of Heartstart training and will take this offer up.  We also hope that Schools will encourage their pupils to organise fundraising to help support the Heartstart Schools and community programme, so that we can continue to offer this training free of charge, which in turn will benefit the whole community.”


Notes to Editor:  Due to the sensitive nature of this incident, the parents of the boy who suffered the cardiac arrest, have asked that he is not named in this follow up.  The 14 year old boy suffered from a heart condition, he has since received treatment to rectify the problem.

If you need further details of this story please contact:

Loraine Coleman at Herefordshire Heartstart on 0845 60 60 654 or Email:-

(Please note the Herefordshire Heartstart office will be closed from 7th August until the 3rd September).


Linda Davies at John Masefield High School, Ledbury on 01531 631 012


Paul Shannon at St Mary’s R.C. High School, Lugwardine on 01432 856416

Additional Information:-

Herefordshire Heartstart is a local voluntary organisation who provides free two hours Heartstart courses in how to save a life in the community.  We also provide free full day courses and requalification training to Schools throughout Herefordshire.

Herefordshire Heartstart provides training and ongoing support to school staff from schools all over Herefordshire.  The Schools who have signed up to the British Heart Foundation Schools Heartstart Scheme can send staff on a free instructor training day organised and funded by Herefordshire Heartstart.  Schools Project Manager and Schools Training Supervisor Loraine Coleman then delivers the training with her colleague Mary Prosser.

The training is an intensive days training, with lots of hand-on practical sessions.  Once all staff have been assessed, they are then signed off as an instructor which enables them to go back into the classroom to deliver the Heartstart course, which teaches basic emergency first aid skills to pupils.

To ensure that the standards in delivery of Heartstart remain high, schools staff are invited back for requalification/refresher training every 18 months.

“The whole ethos of Heartstart is that the training is made available without charge, so we continue to offer the training to schools free of charge.”


Photos show Trustee Tony Powell, Ben Stevens next to Tony, Sam Seaborn (next to Loraine) and Loraine Coleman


Loraine Coleman

Co-ordinator/Project Manager

Herefordshire Heartstart

Email: Tel: 0845 60 60 654



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