Worksop: Alcoholic turns life around with help of learning programme

Pictured from left is Louise Wightman, Councillor Sybil Fielding, Chairman, Notts County Council, and adult learner Mick Hirst of Worksop.
Pictured from left is Louise Wightman, Councillor Sybil Fielding, Chairman, Notts County Council, and adult learner Mick Hirst of Worksop.

A Worksop man who was addicted to alcohol has turned his life around after enrolling on a new community learning programme.

Mick Hirst has now got his life back on track after previously being hooked on alcohol and prescription opiates.

The 52-year-old says he nearly lost his life after hitting rock bottom following a personal tragedy in 2011.

“I worked for 30 years as a nurse in the private sector caring for the elderly and vulnerable,” Mick said.

“I used to drink heavily but without realising it was a problem. Then following a personal trauma in 2011 my life spiralled out of control. I got into debt and turned to drink.”

Mick says that he had also had an outstanding career, but chose to end his employment due to his poor mental and physical health when he had fallen ill.

Mick was found unconscious at home in 2011 and was rushed to Rotherham District Hospital where he had to be resuscitated.

He said: “The medical staff were expecting a cardiac arrest but thankfully it didn’t happen. When I came round, I was determined that I had to change my life and I have been four years in recovery and it is going well.”

Mick has been one of many success stories for a pioneering new Social Enterprise Qualification Bronze Award which Notts County Council’s CLaSS team has developed in partnership with the not-for-profit organisation ‘Infused Learning’ to provide business training opportunities for adult learners.

“Notts County Council’s community learning courses give you a chance that you might not otherwise have,” Mick added.

“I was at rock bottom but with the support of CLaSS, ‘Infused learning’ and ‘Double Impact’ I am getting stronger by the day and doing what I can to help others who find themselves in the situation I was.”