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Hero teacher in line for major honour after saving kids from nursery knifeman

A hero nursery teacher who protected her students from a machete attack is to be considered for a top award.

Lisa Potts shielded the children from a machete-wielding attacker at St Luke’s Primary School in Blakenhall, Wolverhampton.

Aged just 21 at the time of the incident in 1996, she suffered severe injuries to her head, back and both arms.

READ MORE: Father and son wanted by police after boy, 12, attacked with hammer in Dudley

Paranoid schizophrenic Horrett Campbell, then aged 32, armed himself with the fearsome blade and leapt a fence at St Luke’s Church of England Infant School, on July 8, 1996.

BrumWish 2021 aims to get thousands of Christmas gifts to young children in need across our city – the homeless, the vulnerable, kids in care and kids who have little.

This year’s appeal is bigger and better than ever – because we have teamed up with our partners at #Toys4Birmingham, including Thrive Together Birmingham, the Birmingham Playcare Network, the Edgbaston Foundation and Birmingham Forward Steps.

Also involved are Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Trust, Barnardo’s, Spurgeon’s children’s charity, the Springfield project in Sparkhill, St Paul’s Community Development Trust and Your Local Pantry, which runs food hubs in 12 locations across Birmingham and the Black Country.

You can buy a gift from the #Brumwish Amazon Wishlist here.

Or you can collect and drop off donations of new and nearly new toys and gifts to special donation days at Edgbaston Stadium, B5 7QU, on Saturday November 27, Friday December 3 and Saturday December 4, from 11am to 3pm, where volunteers will be waiting to see you.

Brand new or nearly new, unwrapped gifts, books and toys for all ages will be accepted.

You can also donate cash, which will go into a fund held by a charity partner to use to plug gaps or buy specialist toys for children with additional needs. This is the link to make a donation.

The children had been celebrating nearing the end of the school year when the knifeman launched his frenzied attack, lashing out at the screaming three and four-year-olds.

Campbell, whose home overlooked the Blakenhall nursery, had been planning his attack for months – believing the children had been ‘talking about him’ and parents had ‘given information to police’.

The youngsters were saved by Lisa’s quick-thinking decision to hide them under her long skirt. Despite her heroic efforts, another three women and three children were injured in the attack.

Birmingham Evening Mail front page dated 9.7.96 Pictured is Horrett Campbell.

Lisa’s bravery was acknowledged by Her Majesty the Queen who awarded Lisa the George Medal.

Since the attack, Lisa has done considerable charity work and founded the charity Believe 2 Achieve in 2001 which aims to encourage independence and increase self-esteem in children.

Now councillors in Wolverhampton will be asked to consider giving her the freedom of the city in recognition of her exceptional bravery and charity work.

It is the highest honour the council can bestow upon any individual and is only awarded to ‘persons of distinction and those who have rendered eminent services to the city’.

The most recent recipients of the honour were football legend Steve Bull and singer Beverley Knight in 2018.

On Friday, December 10, members of City of Wolverhampton Council’s governance and ethics committee will be asked to recommend that the authority convenes an extraordinary meeting of the full council to bestow freedom of the city to Lisa.

It comes after a nomination to honour her was received by the council and is supported by the Mayor, Coun Greg Brackenridge, leader of the council, Coun Ian Brookfield and leader of the opposition, Coun Wendy Thompson.

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