‘Wessex Heartbeat is a charity that is very close to us’

CLOSE TO HER HEART Mayoress of Fareham Carole Steadman
CLOSE TO HER HEART Mayoress of Fareham Carole Steadman
HMS Queen Elizabeth, the UK's newest aircraft carrier, arrives in Portsmouth for the first time. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday August 16, 2017. The 65,000-tonne carrier, the largest warship ever to be built in Britain, is expected to be the Navy's flagship for at least 50 years. See PA story DEFENCE Carrier. Photo credit should read: Steve Parsons/PA Wire DEFENCE_Carrier_074512.JPG

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WESSEX Heartbeat is a charity that is very close to both me and my husband, the Mayor of Fareham, Dennis.

We know just how scary heart problems can be.

About 12 years ago, I went into QA and I had a reaction to the anaesthetic which caused my heart to stop for five minutes. I was unconscious for two days.

I have practised karate all my life and because of my level of fitness, I pulled through.

Six months later, I went to St Mary’s for a routine check up where they put dye into your heart to make sure it had not been damaged.

As bad luck would have it, I was allergic to the dye.

Again, I managed to pull through. I put it down to the breathing techniques and the fitness from practising karate that I came through it but there is no doubt that the hospital saved my life.

When Dennis and I visited the Wessex Cardiac Ward, it really struck a chord with us.

We understand how serious heart problems can be and we could see the wonderful work that Wessex Heartbeat does.

It makes sure that everyone affected by heart conditions receives the best possible support.

It’s one of the region’s major charities and supports the work of the Wessex Cardiac Centre at Southampton General Hospital.

We thought that its HIGH 5 Appeal was fantastic too.

The HIGH 5 Appeal hopes to raise £500,000 to create a unit designed for the needs of young people aged 16 and upwards with heart conditions.

That’s why Dennis picked Wessex Heartbeat as the mayor’s charity of the year and we want to thank everybody for their continued support for this amazing and very worthwhile charity.