18 Mar

  • By Communications
Students at Plymouth Campus started the new term with a visit from Anthony Bennett.  Now a global inspirational speaker, Anthony inspires audiences around the world with his story of survival.

“After returning from a school trip to Disney Land Paris in 2006 Anthony fell extremely ill and was rushed to his local hospital. After his x-rays came through, Anthony’s family were told his only chance of survival was to be placed on an ECMO life support machine.

During a seven- week stay in Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital, he needed to re-learn the very basic functions, using his hand-eye coordination, breathing without the aid of machines and also using his voice and learning to walk again.  He went on to make a full recovery and help Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity secure a £7.5m charity partnership, with the funds going towards a brand new wing at the children’s hospital.

In recent years Anthony was voted one of the happiest people in the UK by the Independent on Sunday in their ‘Happy List’ for the work he carries out to help enrich the lives of others.”

Here are just a few of the students’ responses.

On the 7th of January 2019, we had an inspirational speaker to our school, called Anthony Bennett. He told us to say yes to opportunity that is presented to us. If you say no, you will never know what good could have come out of it. He taught us to not say no to something that you may fear. At school, he was afraid of public speaking but now he has made it his passion. This speech has taught me to take risks, even if they really scare me.

Y8 student

I was offered an extra session with Anthony Bennet with a couple of friends.  He took us deeper into his story and even told us about the times he had to say no, he told us about the times when he almost gave up and how he regained strength. He showed us how to perform a good speech, he told us why he said what he said and how he related his speech to mothers, fathers and youngsters. He also showed us his website and we got an insight into the places he had been to and the people he had met. I liked the way he talked to us like a friend, he didn’t act like he was anything special. To conclude I believe he is a great speaker to have to school, he is professional, and knows how to make people listen and laugh. I hope we can have him again in the future.

Y8 student

What I got from Anthony Bennett was that if you say yes, then amazing things can happen, but if you say no then it just stays the same and nothing happens. I also got that you need to persevere in life. The last thing I got was that if you give up just one hour of going on technology then I would have at least an extra 30 hours a month to do something like learn a different language, do a backflip or learn a musical instrument.

Y8 student


A Message From Anthony:

“Thank you for such a warm welcome to your school and the amazing opportunity to speak with your pupils and teachers. I’m pleased to hear the feedback has been very positive and It was humbling to learn more about the Brethren Community values.

I’ve included below some details about who I am and what I speak about, for if you have anybody in mind that may be interested in my sessions.

Thank you once again and I wish you, your team and all the students at Plymouth Focus School a very pleasant and successful 2019.

All the best,