September 27, 2017
'Thanks for saving mum's life' - Family cycles for St John Ambulance

A family from Burnham-On-Sea is taking on a big cycling challenge in aid of St John Ambulance this Sunday (October 1st) to thank the charity for saving someone special in their life.

Bev Bishop, her husband, Lee and their son, Owen are joining the Autumn Storm – a 55-mile ride around Devon countryside's and the Blackdown Hills.

The three of them are raising money for the first aid charity after its volunteers saved Judith Mansfield’s life, when she suffered a cardiac arrest at the Bristol Hippodrome, minutes before curtain up on a performance of The Bodyguard, starring Alexandra Burke.

"We came so close to losing mum and we wanted to give something back to St John Ambulance as a thank you for everything they did, that night," Bev told

"I’ve only been cycling for a couple of years and I’m more used to riding on the flat than hills, living on the coast and near Sedgemoor, but we’ve all been practising and we’ll give it our best shot, because the money we raise can help save lives."

Last year’s drama unfolded when Judith collapsed on Thursday January 21; the first aiders on duty at the theatre – Craig Rankin and Steve Jones – went to the assistance of Kristian Keyte who was in the audience and had started giving CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation).

Craig – a paramedic – used the Hippodrome’s portable defibrillator to deliver the single life saving electric shock to Judith’s heart which revived her.

A week later, Judith was reunited with her life saving heroes at the Bristol Royal Infirmary, where they also met star of the show, Alexandra Burke.

"Since then, Craig, Steve and Kristian have all become firm friends," Bev added. "They’re like part of the family and we’ve been back to the Hippodrome to see Sister Act and meet Alexandra again, backstage."

"We could never thank them enough for what they did."

The Bishops have already topped their original target of £1,000, which could pay for a defibrillator that St John Ambulance volunteers take with them to events.

The charity’s community fundraising coordinator, Kevin Dickens told "Brilliant fundraising efforts like this help us make sure our first aiders are highly trained and well-equipped, so that they’re always ready to be the difference between a life lost and a life saved."

"I hope that Bev, Lee and Owen inspire many more people to dig deep for St John Ambulance, because every penny helps save lives."

For more information on St John Ambulance’s work, including how to become a volunteer and details of training for the public, schools and businesses, visit or call 08700 10 49 50.

To support the Bishop family’s fundraising click here.


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