CELEBRITY chef, author and now patron of the Evesham Vale Cardiac Rehab, heart attack survivor Sally Bee visited the charity in the town to celebrate her new role.

Sally Bee is the first patron of the charity, which was set up in Evesham five years ago by town councillor Gerry O'Donnell after he suffered a heart attack in 1991.

His vision was to establish a community based cardiac rehab facility, fully integrated into the discharge pathway of hospital cardiology units.

Now it is located at the Evesham Leisure Centre and offers programmes of supervised exercise supported by counselling, nutritional advice and overall rehabilitation guidance.

Now after five years Sally Bee, who lives with a rare heart condition and suffered three life threatening heart attacks in 2004, hopes she can help the plans to develop the unit.

“Cutting edge technology in the operating theatre is pointless if you are not encouraged to live a normal life again afterwards,” she said. “Evesham Cardiac Rehab provides the vital support needed to help people grow in confidence and take better control of their future health. I am delighted to support the charity and hope my media profile will be helpful as the trustees implement plans to develop the unit in the future.”

Sally, who writes a regular column for The Daily Mail, called The Expert Patient and has published four healthy eating recipe books as well as a guide to life following a heart attack, will be formally introduced as the new patron at a black tie charity dinner, on Saturday, March 29, at the Wood Norton Hotel, in Evesham, alongside Mark Webster, ITN journalist.

The cost of the fundraiser is £35 per person. To reserve a place contact Marie Horne on 01386 565 201 or email marie.horne@wychavon.gov.uk or visit eveshamvalecardiacrehab.org.uk.