A HEREFORDSHIRE teenager believes it is vital that as many young people know the basics of CPR after saving her great-grandfather's life. 

Layla Lewis was on her way to Ken Hughes' house in Hereford to be picked up after finishing early at Herefordshire, Ludlow & North Shropshire College.

However, after arriving at his home, she found him sat in a chair in cardiac arrest.

The 17-year-old, who is from Leominster, immediately dialled 999 and was told what to do over the phone.


"I couldn't feel a pulse or anything. I was performing CPR for five to six minutes," said Layla.

"We've spoken about CPR at college and have done demonstrations but there's nothing visibly available."

Luckily, Mr Hughes survived and after spending 10 days in hospital, was sent home. 

He now has a pacemaker fitted and says he feels fine in himself.

"I was dizzy but had no pain, apart from my ribs when Layla did CPR," said Mr Hughes.

"I didn't know what had happened until I woke up in hospital."

Hereford Times:

At the time of his cardiac arrest, Mr Hughes' wife, Sue, had briefly left the house to go to the shop.

"When I pulled up, the first person I saw asked if I called an ambulance," said Mrs Hughes.

"I said no. He read out my address so I thought, 'what has he [Ken] done?'

"Layla was doing CPR on Ken because he was not breathing.

"Her teacher got Covid and they couldn't replace her. That's why she was coming to us so we can take her home. It's still very emotional."

To say thank you to his great-granddaughter, Mr Hughes has given Layla a medal.

"She's my hero," he said.

Hereford Times: Layla Lewis with her medalLayla Lewis with her medal (Image: Rob Davies)

June Davison, senior cardiac nurse at the British Heart Foundation, said the story demonstrates why it is so important to learn CPR.

"Tragically, less than one in 10 people today in the UK survive an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest," she said.

"When someone has a cardiac arrest, every second counts, and CPR can mean the difference between life and death.

“Governments and local authorities across all four nations have now committed to teaching pupils CPR when they reach secondary school.

"The BHF is committed to providing free CPR training resources to all secondary schools in the UK, ensuring that all young people leave school with the skills and confidence to save a life.

First aid courses, which include basic life support training, are also a great way to learn CPR. Alternatively, people can use our new web-based CPR training tool, RevivR. In as little as 15 minutes, RevivR can equip people with skills they need to save someone’s life with nothing more than a phone and a pillow."

For more information, visit bhf.org.uk/revivr