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TV's Andrew Marr thanks 'wonderful' Charing Cross Hospital staff

BBC presenter Andrew Marr has praised doctors and nurses at Charing Cross for saving his life after a stroke, and talked about how drawing aided his recovery

Andrew Marr
Andrew Marr

Presenter Andrew Marr has thanked the ‘wonderful’ doctors and nurses at Charing Cross who treated him after suffering a major stroke earlier this year.

The 54-year-old was treated at the hospital’s Imperial Stroke Centre for two months in January.

Marr said: “I came to Charing Cross Hospital feeling my life was about to end. I was very much on edge, but I was saved thanks to the wonderful doctors, nurses and therapists in this incredible hospital and I’d like to thank them very much.”

He was speaking on World Stroke Day last month and was launching his book A Short Book About Drawing, which he finished just before his stroke.

It explores his experiences of drawing and painting and its links to happiness. He also discussed the relationship art has with the brain and stroke recovery. He has been patron of the hospital’s Campaign for Drawing for six years.

Marr, like many of the 150 stroke patients treated at Charing Cross each month, worked with art therapists at his bedside during rehabilitation.

His art therapist Emelie Salford said: “Art can be a universal language for people who have had a stroke and are overcoming problems with mobility or speech. A close interaction between the patient, the therapist and the art can reignite the patient’s hope and reinforce their confidence.”

The broadcaster said he ‘became Andrew Marr again’ when he started to draw after his illness.

Charing Cross hosts one of London’s eight hyper acute stroke centres. Stroke is the UK’s second highest cause of death and the most common cause of adult disability. More patients are likely to survive and regain independence after suffering strokes if they are treated at specialist units.

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