Lisa Potts

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Lisa Webb

Lisa Potts

OccupationFormer nursery teacher
Known forDefending children in her care from a machete attack

Lisa Webb GM (née Potts) is a former nursery teacher noted for saving school children's lives from a machete attack on 8 July 1996.

The attack was made at St Luke's Primary School in Blakenhall, Wolverhampton, England, by a man with severe paranoid schizophrenia.

Potts' arm was almost severed in the attack, in which four children were also injured. Potts, who was 21 years old at the time, also suffered severe cuts to her head, back, and to both arms.[1] In 1997, Queen Elizabeth II presented Potts with the George Medal.[2] Her attacker, Horrett Campbell, was sentenced to indefinite detention in a secure mental hospital.[3]

Potts suffered severe scarring, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. She was awarded £68,000 compensation more than four years after the attack.[4][5] The compensation was widely criticised as inadequate, especially by comparison with high libel awards.[citation needed] Potts subsequently worked as a counsellor and, in 2001, founded a charity, Believe To Achieve, based in schools in Wolverhampton. The charity aims to encourage independence and to increase self-esteem in children.[6]

Potts published an autobiography entitled Behind the Smile in 1998. A foreword was contributed by Cherie Blair.[7] Potts went on to study a degree in Counselling in 2004. She has two sons. In 2010 Potts retrained as an Adult Nurse at Wolverhampton University and then went on to become a specialist Public Health Nurse.[8]

Books by Lisa Potts[edit]

  • Thank You God: Book of Children's Prayers (editor) (1997) Hodder Children's Books, London ISBN 0-340-70981-2
  • Behind the Smile: My story by Lisa Potts (1998) Hodder & Stoughton, London ISBN 0-340-72148-0
  • Heroes for a Day (2000) Hodder & Stoughton, London ISBN 0-340-74586-X


  1. ^ BBC – Lisa Potts ten years on
  2. ^ BBC – Nursery nurse honoured for bravery
  3. ^ "Machete man sent to secure mental hospital". The Independent. London. 8 March 1997. Retrieved 5 August 2012.
  4. ^ "On this Day 1996: Guilty verdict on school machete attacker". BBC News. 6 February 2001. Retrieved 5 January 2010.
  5. ^ "On this Day 1996: Seven slashed in school machete attack". BBC News. 8 July 1996. Retrieved 5 January 2010.
  6. ^ "Our Nation's Future:Tackling exclusion head-on". Archived from the original on 29 June 2007.
  7. ^ Potts, Lisa Behind the Smile: My story by Lisa Potts (1998) Hodder & Stoughton, London ISBN 0-340-72148-0
  8. ^ Woods, Rebecca (5 July 2016). "Injured nurse 'forgives' machete attacker". BBC News. Retrieved 13 February 2018.

External links[edit]