Heart Heroes South West

Thank you for nominating, and for voting for, our Heart Heroes of 2017. The winners were announced at the South East Supporter Day at the Bristol Royal Infirmary on 21 July 2017.

Everyone who was nominated is very special and we are proud so many amazing people have the chance to be recognised for their fight against heart disease.

Daniel Hallett heart hero 2017Fighting Spirit Award  

This award will go to an individual or group of people who have been affected by congenital heart disease and used their experiences as a force for good.

Winner: Daniel Hallett. Daniel was just two days old when he had his first of two heart surgeries. He was born with a congenital heart condition that affected the arteries and valves of his heart. To help manage his condition, doctors suggested that Daniel try to stay healthy. From there, the occasional jog turned Daniel into a dedicated supporter of our running events helping to raise over £5,000. 

Winner: Evie Walker. Evie was born with truncus arteriosus, a rare type of congenital heart disease. It’s meant that Evie has already had three open heart surgeries. But Evie has never let her condition stop her. She organised a series of fundraising challenges to support the BHF and used her experience to be a positive force by supporting other children undergoing heart surgery. 

Winner: Nicholas Symonds. Three-year old Nicholas is living with a number of complex heart conditions, as well as a paralysed diaphragm. Every day is a struggle for Nicholas, yet he has shown himself to be a true fighter. Despite undergoing seven operations in his young life he insists on being given the opportunity to play with his friends and take part in activities.

Ellie Savage heart hero 2017Young Hero award  

For an exceptional young person raising awareness of the BHF's aims and ambitions. This person might be a heart patient, a campaigner, a blogger, a volunteer or a fundraiser.

Winner: Ellie Savage. Ellie was 10 years old when she suddenly developed a heart condition which meant her heart beat abnormally fast. When Ellie learnt that she would need heart surgery, her first thought was not for herself, but others. She organised a fun run which more than 300 people took part in raising over £5,000 for the BHF.

Winner: Ellie Payne. Five-year old Ellie was born with a serious heart condition, but despite having to undergo two heart operations she never complains. This lively young lady has instead helped to raise over £33,000 for the BHF through Ellie’s Walk. This annual event sees children walk a mile and a half and take part in family centred activities.

William McCrae heart hero 2017Heart Health Professional Award  

This award will go to an individual who has shown drive and commitment to improve the lives of heart patients and/or their families. This could be BHF-funded scientists, cardiologists, cardiac rehabilitation instructors, pharmacists, GP's and nurses.

Winner: Dr William McCrae. Dr McCrea is a great advocate for the BHF and heart patients. Last year he decided to combine his commitment to helping people with heart problems with his love of music. Dr McCrea wrote and recorded a Christmas song with the proceeds from the recording going to the BHF and the local hospital charity.

Donna and Paul Stevens heart hero 2017Inspiration award  

For involving and inspiring others in the fight for every heartbeat. This could be demonstrated through their fundraising efforts, taking part in a physical challenge, organising an event or volunteering activities.

Winner: Donna and Paul Stevens. Donna and Paul were devastated when their 13 month old son Elliot died from a heart condition in 2015. Their tragedy inspired them to launch Elliot’s Touch a fundraising appeal aimed at supporting organisations that are research cardiomyopathy and mitochondrial disease. Through a variety of events, their tireless and courageous fundraising has raised over £70,000 for this incredible personal cause.

Winner: Michael Foster. Michael had a heart transplant in May 1993. Since then, Michael has gone on to complete a series of challenges that that would test even the most seasoned athlete. Michael has won medals at the Transplant Games, run 26 marathons in 26 days and at the age of 70 completed the six peaks in under 60 hours.

Winner: Ceejay Spencer-Browne. After her sister Sammy died of a cardiac arrest, Ceejay Spencer-Browne wanted to make sure that other families didn’t have go through the same heartache. Over the last two years, Ceejay has skydived from a plane, completed two marathons and a triathlon all whilst raising money for the BHF.  

CPR Heroes

These awards were presented to people who have saved lives through their swift action by performing CPR when someone went into cardiac arrest. Awards were presented to the following winners:

  • Philip Mace
  • Hilary Sanders
  • Louise Snelson
  • Dominic Fairman and Zack Holdaway
  • Barry Holding
  • Samantha Hobbs

The Heart Heroes section of the day takes place in the afternoon of our Supporter day events. If you are interested to hear about the work of the BHF, meet our Chief Executive Simon Gillespie and our funded researchers and see our science up close, you can register for your local Supporter Day here.