It was some 10 years ago that I collapsed on a street in Norwich. A passer-by immediately called 999 and massaged my chest in the middle of the road. An ambulance with a defibrillator happened to just be round the corner and were attending me within 1.5 minutes. As a result of the shock delivered, I slowly came to life and quickly made a complete recovery. I then went to Papworth Hospital to have the ICD implanted. Since then, I have been under the monitoring of the device by the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading. I now have a latitude communicator in my bedroom which communicates directly to the Royal Berks and has reduced the need for a face-to-face appointment to be just 1 per year. I have remained in good health and the ICD has had no need to fire since being implanted! I am very grateful to the NHS for all I have received and respond enthusiastically to helping in whatever way I can.
I was born into a farming family in Co. Down, Northern Ireland. As farming was in my blood, I did a BSc in Agriculture at Newcastle upon-Tyne University. Upon graduating, I took up an appointment within the Department of Agriculture as an Agriculture Advisory Officer. After 2.5 years in that role I was offered the opportunity to manage a business based in Newbury, Berkshire. I came to Newbury in 1974 to take up that appointment and married Ruth in 1975. We have a son and a daughter. For the last 25+ years I owned and ran a business in the field of Business Development Consultancy specialising in franchising. I have now sold that business and, at the age of 64 years, I am helping my daughter and her husband launch and develop a new business in the care sector.