THE daughter of former deputy prime minister Michael Heseltine, has raised £75,000 for the hospital that saved her husband’s life.

Alexandra Williams, 58, pledged to raise £50,000 for Oxford’s John Radcliffe Hospital after Nick Williams was treated there last year.

Mr Williams, the owner of Holloway’s auctioneers suffered an aortic dissection on February 12 last year.

His main blood vessel, the aorta, which pumps blood around the body, was coming apart from his heart.

Even after surgery there was still a one in five chance the 58-year-old would die.

Mrs Williams, an art dealer from Thenford, near Banbury, said: “The Oxford Heart Centre saved my husband’s life.

“He was at death’s door and if they hadn’t operated as quickly as they did, he would have undoubtedly have died.”

She continued: “I made a promise to the ITU Sister that I would do this for the hospital even before we knew Nick would survive.”

An April clothes sale raised £3,000 and a September art auction at her parents’ Thenford property boosted funds.

The Oxford Heartfelt Appeal aims to create a world-class echocardiography unit at the Oxford Heart Centre. More than 15,000 of the heart echo scans already take place at the hospital each year.

Her husband has returned to work and is settling back into family like with daughters Molly, 16, and Augusta, 14.

Mr Williams said: "Alexandra has done incredibly well and what she has achieved has made myself and a lot of people very proud. In a few weeks, she and I will return to ICU at the hospital for the first time since I was taken ill.

"I've no doubt it will be a very emotional experience, but also a very proud one.’’

Andrew House, head of major gifts at the hospital’s charity said: “Alexandra’s passion and energy for this cause has been remarkable and the hospital charity and Oxford Heart Centre team are hugely grateful for all that she, her family and friends have achieved. It’s been inspirational.”

Conservative Lord Hesletine, 80, was elected as an MP in 1966 and rose through the Tory ranks to roles including deputy PM and secretary of state for defence.

The Heartfelt Appeal aims to raise £1.3m.

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