A Bury St Edmunds restaurant manager who saved a customer’s life on his first day at work in the branch, has been chosen as this year’s ‘Local Hero’ who will switch on the town’s Christmas Lights. Daniel Challenor, who works at Wagamama in the town and is also first aid trained, gave CPR to a customer who’d collapsed while having a family lunch.
Daniel has subsequently been presented with a bravery award from the Humane Society for his actions. In recent years the honour of switching on the Bury St Edmunds Christmas Lights has been given to a ‘Local Hero’ – someone who is an inspiration to others or has given great service to the town.
The Our Bury St Edmunds Christmas Lights Switch On event runs from 3pm on Thursday November 14. There will be a packed programme of street and stage entertainment and festive fundraising stalls for charities, with the highlight of the evening at 7pm when Daniel, watched by Father Christmas, flicks the switch to ensure the town is lit up. Entertainment will then continue until 8pm.
The event is one of the annual crowd-pleasing events run by the Business Improvement District (BID) organisation Our Bury St Edmunds. Chief Executive Mark Cordell said: “In the last few years we have chosen someone who is an inspiration to others, with a strong connection to Bury St Edmunds to switch on the lights. When we heard that a staff member from one of our BID businesses had saved a life in this way, we knew that we wouldn’t find a better Local Hero this year. We will be making a donation to the East Anglian Air Ambulance, which is Daniel’s chosen charity, to thank him.”
Daniel commented: “It’s an honour to be invited to switch on the Christmas lights and I’m really looking forward to the evening which should be a lot of fun and a really busy night for the town centre.”
Mark Cordell added: “While being invited to switch on the lights is a fun result of Daniel’s actions it really does show that training in CPR is so valuable for everyone. Our Bury St Edmunds runs a number of first aid training courses through the year that are free for staff from our member businesses. I hope this will also remind people who might be wondering if they should give up a day to attend training like this, why it’s such a worthwhile thing to do.”
For more information visit www.ourburystedmunds.com.