Shopping centre heroes handed award for saving Hartlepool girl’s life

The Ceremonial Mayor of Hartlepool, Coun Rob Cook, presents from left Steven Dawking, Christine Weldrake and Middleton Grange Shopping Centre manager Mark Rycraft (on behalf of Adam Goodwin) with Pride in Hartlepool Awards for saving the life of Millie Wise, front.
The Ceremonial Mayor of Hartlepool, Coun Rob Cook, presents from left Steven Dawking, Christine Weldrake and Middleton Grange Shopping Centre manager Mark Rycraft (on behalf of Adam Goodwin) with Pride in Hartlepool Awards for saving the life of Millie Wise, front.

Shopping centre heroes who saved the life of a three-year-old Hartlepool girl have been honoured by their town.

The quick-thinking and actions of Steven Dawking, Adam Goodwin and Christine Weldrake stopped little Millie Wise from choking on a chicken nugget.

Youngster Millie Wise was saved by Middleton Grange Shopping Centre staff.

Youngster Millie Wise was saved by Middleton Grange Shopping Centre staff.

She had been dining with nana Sandra Longmoor at the McDonald’s outlet in Middleton Grange Shopping Centre last August when she began to choke on a chicken nugget.

Those workers from the centre who teamed up to save her have now been presented with a Pride In Hartlepool Award by the Ceremonial Mayor of Hartlepool, Coun Rob Cook.

Millie’s mum, Claire Wise, was at Hartlepool Civic Centre to see the awards handed out.

She said: “We’re delighted that they have been given the recognition for saving Millie’s life.

I’m just very grateful that they acted so quickly to save her, and we definitely want to keep in touch

Claire Wise

“I’m just very grateful that they acted so quickly to save her, and we definitely want to keep in touch.”

Christine, a part of the cleaning team at Middleton Grange, first spotted Millie in difficulty, and notified security supervisor Adam, who located Millie on a camera, called for an ambulance and dispatched other staff and a medical bag.

Security officer Steven was first to reach Millie, and after trying several times to dislodge the blockage without success, finally the nugget came out. Steve was later told by medics if it had been just five seconds longer, Millie may not have survived.

The 42-year-old, of King Oswy, said: “I’m full of pride to have been given the award.

“Seeing Millie alive and kicking, and so full of life, is enough for me though.

“It was a real team effort. All the cogs clicked together as they’re supposed to.

“I see the family quite regularly and keep in touch. I guess she’ll always be part of my life now.”

Coun Cook said: “The Pride In Hartlepool Awards are not given out lightly.

“They should take great pride in getting these awards, because they are very few and far between.

“Because of their prompt action, they saved Millie’s life and that is something to be really proud of.

“When I look at Millie now, to think that she could possibly have not been here is absolutely heartbreaking.

“It just shows you what people can do and how people can rally round.

“I know if happens everywhere, but Hartlepool to me has its own little extra bit of personality where people help each other in situations like that.”