STAFF members from a school in Clacton have been honoured with a coveted award from a non-profit organisation this weekend after their quick-thinking saved a student’s life.

Earlier this year, John Gray, a Year 9 pupil at Clacton County High School, went into cardiac arrest after becoming unwell during a drama lesson and fainting.

Rushing to his assistance, trained first-aiders Rachel Blastock and Gary Winterford administered CPR and deployed life-saving defibrillation shocks.

At the same time, the pair’s colleagues Amanda Dullage and Nicola Nundy were liaising with emergency services and quickly preparing the school grounds for the arrival of an air ambulance.

Throughout the high-pressure events John’s family members were also informed and kept up to date with any important and ongoing developments.

By the time John had started to show positive signs of life, paramedics had arrived at the scene and he was quickly and safely taken to Colchester Hospital.

He was then transferred to The Royal Brompton Hospital where he remained for several weeks after having treatment for Wolff Parkinson White Syndrome.

The heroic actions of the school’s staff members will now see them honoured with an award at the SADS National Lifesaver Awards night.

Now in its 10th year, the annual ceremony recognises people within the community who have used CPR and a defibrillator to save someone’s life.

This year’s presentation took place at the Carlton House Terrace in London on Saturday and saw the four heroes presented with an award by Dr Hilary Jones, who is the health editor on Good Morning Britain.

Speaking about the recognition, Gary Winterford, facilities manager at Clacton County High School, praised the school's desire to ensure the safety of its students.

He said: “We are delighted to have been honoured at the SADS UK National Lifesaver Awards.

“I would just like to say that in my capacity of First Aid Line Manager over the last nine years or so here at Clacton County High School, I have never worked with a more dedicated and conscientious group of people.

“Not just Rachael, Amanda and Nicola, who are outstanding day in and day out, but all of the school staff, who tirelessly endeavour to ensure our students are given the best education and opportunities in a safe and caring environment.”

All of Clacton County High School’s teaching and non-teaching staff have now completed a CPR and defibrillator introduction course which was run in-house.

The safety-conscious school has also now purchased a third defibrillator and John has now retuned to education.