Acton teacher who survived stroke takes on Great North challenge

Going again: Acton High School teacher Peter Banks

Going again: Acton High School teacher Peter Banks

First published in News by

STROKE survivor Peter Banks will tackle the Bupa Great North Run on Sunday, September 7, to raise vital funds for the Stroke Association.

PE teacher Peter Banks, 31, had a stroke in January 2012.

Specialists at the stroke unit quickly treated him and gave him thrombolysis, a clot-busting drug, to restore the flow of blood to the brain.

He was discharged five days later and, after five months, returned to work at Acton High School.

Peter, from West Drayton, said: “I’d played golf in the morning and was at home sorting through some paperwork when my vision became blurred.

“I tried rubbing my eyes but it didn’t make any difference. Due to my age and level of fitness, I didn’t know what was happening.

“My girlfriend was at church, so I called my parents in Sheffield. They noticed my speech was slurred and, while I was on the phone to them, I found I was having to think hard to answer even the simplest of questions.

“My parents realised something was wrong and dialled 999 for an ambulance.

“While I waited for it, I had my dad on speaker phone, but by this time I’d lost motor control and fallen off the couch. I managed to crawl to the door and open it so the ambulance crew could get in."

Before suffering his stroke, Peter had taken part in half marathons and in 2004 completed the Snowdon Marathon, but this will be the longest distance he has run since his scare.

He added: “My training has been going well and so far I’ve been running between four and seven miles three to four times a week. I’m planning to step it up even more in August ahead of the run.”

Janet Price, Regional Fundraiser at the Stroke Association, said: “With around 152,000 strokes a year in the UK – that’s around one every three and a half minutes - it is vital we have people like Peter who can raise funds.”

To sponsor Peter, visit

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