Mayor's salute for quick-thinking Ashleigh

Date published: 14 September 2018

A caring pupil from Royton and Crompton School has been given the Mayor’s Appreciation Award for helping to prevent a stranger from committing suicide.

Ashleigh Duffy, aged 16, was on her way home from the gym when she was approached by a woman asking to borrow her phone.

Ashleigh initially proceeded with caution, but asked the woman if there was anybody she would like her to call.

The woman explained that she was feeling suicidal and asked Ashleigh to call 999, which she did. 

Despite the woman then attempting to move on and telling her to go, Ashleigh followed the advice of the ambulance crew on the phone and remained close-by.

The woman then moved closer to the edge of a wall and it was at this point that Ashleigh flagged down a driver.

The driver then took over and helped to deal with the situation.

Ashleigh said: “I knew that as a young person I couldn’t do much, so it was a relief when I managed to get the attention of a passing driver because I couldn’t just leave her on her own.”

It was on hearing what happened that Ashleigh’s teacher, Mrs Vicky Freer, brought her kind act to the Mayor’s attention.

Mrs Freer said: “Ashleigh’s caring nature shone through on the afternoon that she encountered the woman in distress.

“Most people wouldn’t have stopped to help but Ashleigh did and after hearing this I just had to alert the council as I felt she deserved some recognition.”

This is not the first time that pupils from Royton and Crompton School have been recognised for their acts of kindness.

Last year three pupils leapt to the aid of an injured woman visiting the school – showing once again the strong moral standards of the school’s pupils.

Mayor of Oldham, Councillor Javid Iqbal, said: “It was a pleasure to meet Ashleigh and her parents should be very proud.

“I felt that it was only right to acknowledge her good deed as she demonstrated a great deal of maturity and sensitivity – attributes that will undoubtedly stand her in good stead.”

Ashleigh recently completed her GCSEs, gaining great results and has just started at The Blue Coat School Sixth Form College studying English Literature, Psychology and Sociology.

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