Building a bridge to your heart

Transforming the future for heart diagnosis is behind the Miracle Magnets 4 Hearts (MM4H) campaign, run by Norfolk Heart Trust (NHT) to fund a £1.5m state-of-the-art cardiac Magnetic Resonance Imaging (cMRI) scanner for Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH).

Published in Norfolk Director Magazine Summer | Autumn 2023

Giving Back: The Norfolk Heart Trust

Heart disease is the single biggest cause of death in the UK and more than half of us will have heart and circulatory problems in our lifetime. Therefore, early and accurate detection, diagnosis and treatment are vital, and having dedicated equipment is transformational.

A Heart MRI helps save lives by providing miracle images of the heart’s structure and function, and prevents unnecessary invasive assessments or X Rays,” says Dr Leisa Freeman, Honorary Consultant Cardiologist, NNUH Honorary Associate Professor, Norwich School of Medicine (University of East Anglia) and Chairman of NHT.

The NHS/NNUH undertakes cardio magnetic resonance (CMR) but has capacity for just 30 per cent of scans required, resulting in long waiting lists or travel out of Norfolk. A dedicated CMR scanner provides 3D and 4D reconstructions of the heart, helps identify the need for open heart or keyhole surgery, and advises on treatment. It also:

  • Takes detailed moving pictures of the heart.
  • Diagnoses heart disease more safely than x-ray tests or tubes inside the heart.
  • Diagnoses problems with pumping function, valves and rare diseases, including congenital heart conditions.
  • Completely changes how patients receive treatment.
  • Through progressive monitoring builds on specialist knowledge and development of treatments.
  • Supports research and future training of medical professionals.

NHT’s campaign is backed by friends of the late Iain Brooksby, a leading cardiologist and former medical director of NNUH and past Chairman of NHT, who helped save the lives of many people in the county. His close friend, Jonathan Ellis, will chair the Iain Brooksby Memorial Event (IBME), comprising of  a golf day and dinner at Barnham Broom in mid-September. Sponsored by the RG Carter Group, it is expected to generate more than £180,000 with an online auction. Among the star lots is a bronze statue of the late Duke of Edinburgh’s favourite carriage-driving pony, Nevis, specially commissioned for the late Queen by celebrated sculptor Charlie Langton. Bidding is open to all at from 25 August.

The fund is well over half-way to its target, thanks to gifts as well as donations at the recent Royal Norfolk Show, where it was one of President John Cushing’s charities. The scanner has backing from NHS England, and NHT is urging businesses to support the fundraising appeal either as their charity of the year, or by payroll giving via the NCF.

Fundraising in aid of the NHT fund is managed by Norfolk Community Foundation (Registered Charity, 1110817). To make a large donation, or if you have a heart story, contact Jonathan Ellis of Norfolk Heart Trust

T: 01263 732367
Or visit

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