Saving lives for Alison

Parents of a Birmingham teenager who died from adult cot death on her first day of college are preparing to help save other lives in her memory.

Alison Linforth was just 16 when she collapsed at her desk from Sudden Adult Death Syndrome in which a defect causes the heart to suddenly stop beating.

On Saturday, her parents Evelyn and John Linforth, of Greatstone Road, Northfield, will achieve their goal of carrying out heart checks on hundreds of young people at the church where Alison worshipped in Longbridge.

The couple have campaigned for more random heart tests with charity Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) to help diagnose problems and prevent deaths like Alison's and also Walsall footballer Anton Reid, who died aged 16 while training.

Their efforts have led to the free testing session at Longbridge Methodist Church, in Bristol Road South, which costs £6,000, raised by the couple and other grieving parents.

Mr Linforth, who also has a daughter Gemma with 50-year-old wife Evelyn, a carer at Birmingham Children's Hospital, said: "The screening event will be held t the church where we had Alison's funeral service.

"We hope to screen free of charge up to 130 young people.

"this is particularly apt bearing in mind the death of young Walsall player Anton Reid, one of many victims recently."

Doctors will test people aged between 16 and 36 with a ten-minute electrocardiogram heart test (ECG) on the day, which detects heart abnormalities.

Alison, of Kingswood Road, Longbridge, died on her first day at Cadbury's Sixth Form College, Kings Norton, in September 2003, due to an extremely rare electrical abnormality within the heart that would only have been identified by an ECG heart test.

Parents can book a place for their teenager at or for more information telephone 0121 681 8189.

Adult Death Syndrome Victims

Sudden death Syndrome is diagnosed when death occurs unexpectedly and kills around 120 people in the UK every year including:

Walsall FC player Anton Reid, aged 16, died from an undiagnosed heart condition which came to light only after his death.

The promising youth team player, of Wenlock Gardens, Coalpool, Walsall, was being put through his paces at the University of Aston training ground on August 20 last year when he collapsed.

Solitaire Smith, aged 16, of Crocketts Road, Handsworth, died in her sleep just days before she was due to pick up her GCSE exam results and was a victim of Sudden Adult Death Syndrome in August last year.

Former Blue Coat School pupil Jennifer Pearce, aged 19, from Harborne, died from Sudden Adult Death Syndrome in October 2003 while studying at Manchester University.