Stroke suf­ferer takes on Great North Run

Teacher to raise money and aware­ness of con­di­tion

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS - By Alan Hayes alan.hayes@trin­i­tymir­

A PE teacher will tackle the Bupa Great North Run to raise vi­tal funds for the Stroke As­so­ci­a­tion – two years af­ter he suf­fered stroke him­self.

Peter Banks, 31, of The Green, West Dray­ton, suf­fered a cere­bral haem­or­rhage in Jan­uary 2012.

He said: “I’d played golf in the morn­ing and was at home sort­ing through some pa­per­work when my vi­sion be­came blurred. I tried rub­bing my eyes but it didn’t make any dif­fer­ence. Due to my age and level of fit­ness, I didn’t know what was hap­pen­ing.

“My girl­friend was at church, so I called my par­ents in Sh­effield.

“They no­ticed that my speech was slurred, and while I was on the phone to them I found I was having to think hard to an­swer even the sim­plest of ques­tions.

“My par­ents re­alised some­thing was wrong and they di­alled 999 for an

a am­bu­lance. While I waited for the am­bu­lance I had my dad on speak­er­phone, but by this time I’d lost mo­tor con­trol and had fallen off the couch.

“I man­aged to crawl to the door and open it so the am­bu­lance crew could get in.”

Us­ing the in­for­ma­tion given dur­ing the phone call from his par­ents and by con­duct­ing tests, the am­bu­lance crew sus­pected that Peter was suf­fer­ing from a stroke.

Hos­pi­tal spe­cial­ists quickly treated him and gave him clot-bust­ing drugs to re­store the flow of blood to the brain.

He was dis­charged five days later and af­ter five months he re­turned to work at Ac­ton High School.

Peter had pre­vi­ously taken part in half marathons and in 2004 com­pleted the Snow­don Marathon, but the event on Septem­ber 7 will be the long­est dis­tance he has run since his stroke.

He added: “My train­ing has been go­ing well and so far I’ve been run­ning between four and seven miles, three to four times a week. I’m plan­ning to step it up even more in Au­gust ahead of the run.”

Janet Price, re­gional fundraiser at the Stroke As­so­ci­a­tion, said: “With around 152,000 strokes a year in the UK – that’s around one ev­ery three and a half min­utes – it is vi­tal that we have peo­ple like Peter who can raise funds for peo­ple af­fected by strokes.

“We’re re­ally grate­ful to him for tak­ing on this re­ward­ing chal­lenge and look for­ward to cheer­ing him on as he speeds from New­cas­tle to South Shields.”

To spon­sor Peter, visit w w w. j u s t g i v i n g . c o m / Peter-Banks2

■ RE­COV­ERED: Peter Banks, who suf­fered a stroke two years ago, is tak­ing on the Bupa Great North Run

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