Episode seven: a conversation with Adam Briggs

At 9, Adam Briggs was told by doctors he wouldn’t live past 18, after being born a ‘blue’ baby. His heart was working on 3% capacity and he had no energy to move from his wheelchair. He was the sickest child on the transplant list and soon after, he underwent yet another operation – this time a heart transplant.

At 9, Adam Briggs was told by doctors he wouldn’t live past 18, after being born a ‘blue’ baby. His heart was working on 3% capacity and he had no energy to move from his wheelchair. He was the sickest child on the transplant list and soon after, he underwent yet another operation – this time a heart transplant.


Now at 35, Adam has survived 60 heart operations and is healthy, active and throwing himself around the fells of the Lake District, where he works as a Sports Therapist. He fell in love with the trails in his 20s and jumped straight into training and attempting a brutal Bob Graham round, an iconic circuit of 66 miles and 42 peaks in the Lake District. His story is depicted beautifully in the short film Life on the Fells, which follows his transition to the trails and a brief insight into his mindset.


Adam has a wicked sense of humour and a lot of stories to tell and I loved this conversation with him. He shares a piece of his story: what it was like being told at a young age that the odds are against you living; the experience of undergoing a transplant; breaking the boundaries of medical opinion; and the story of his first Bob Graham attempt and his future plans. Wishing Adam strength for the future – he’s had a tough year this year and his plans for another Bob Graham Round have been interrupted by broken ribs and illness but we’re rooting for his swift recovery to the trails soon. He’s expert at travelling through adversity!

It’s worth mentioning that the organ donation system in Wales has now changed to an opt-out system, wherein you are a donor unless you actively register your decision to opt out. The England and Scotland system is still opt-in, but both the House of Commons and the Scottish Government are currently considering legislation to shift to opt-out.


The episode is RIGHT HERE! Please subscribe and leave a positive review if you enjoy, this will really help me put out another series. And if you want to support the unit that saved Adam’s life, please donate to CHUF– Children’s Heart Unit Fund - at Freeman Hospital in Newcastle. They clearly do some incredible work. Thanks Adam for sharing a slice of your mountains and your mind, and letting me interrupt your lunch!


Adam Briggs on the fells


Show notes


CHUF: Children’s Heart Unit Fund


Organ Donation Register


Life on the Fells film


Bob Graham Round

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