Foundation research

Meet our celebrity ambassadors | British Heart Foundation

Olivia Arben

Model Olivia Arben was 16 when she lost her father to heart disease. Olivia has been dedicated to working with the British Heart Foundation since 2017, taking part in various retail campaigns such as #BoughtAtBHF, helping to promote second-hand shopping and sustainability.

Olivia knows the devastating impact of heart and circulatory disease and is passionate about working with BHF to raise awareness. Olivia’s support has been invaluable to many social media campaigns and corporate partnerships. Most recently, she attended the Beating Hearts Ball and served as a judge and presenter at the Heart Hero Awards.

Gemma Atkinson

Gemma Atkinson

We have worked closely with actress Gemma Atkinson for many years. Gemma lost her father to a heart attack when she was just 17. This prompted her to start supporting the BHF.

As a long-time supporter of the charity, Gemma took part in our television appeal, Manchester to Blackpool Night Ride and led our Bag It Beat It campaign to help raise awareness for women and heart disease. Gemma also participated in our annual Heart Hero Awards.

As someone who has lost a loved one, Gemma is keen to help others who have suffered a similar loss or are living with heart disease. After years of support, we are proud to have Gemma as our ambassador and look forward to the future work we can do together.

Black Roger

Roger Black MBE

Olympic silver medalist and world champion Roger Black MBE has been a longtime supporter of BHF after being diagnosed with congenital heart disease aged 11.

Over the years, Roger has been involved in various campaigns, press opportunities and events, including the most recent BHF My Step Challenge. Roger is passionate about encouraging people of all ages to exercise and move, especially those in the cardiac patient community.

Yinka Bokkini

Yinka Bokkini

Yinka is a Capital XTRA DJ and hosts the weekday breakfast show. When he’s not on the radio, you’ll also find Yinka on your screen, showcasing numerous music events, festivals and TV documentaries.

Yinka has been involved with the BHF for a few years, including hosting behind-the-scenes content and being a judge at our annual Heart Hero Awards. Yinka also hosted a talk with members of One Beat, BHF’s support group for young people living with heart problems. As a person with her own heart disease, Yinka enjoys meeting supporters, other heart disease sufferers and learning about the research we do.

Through her role as an ambassador, Yinka is passionate about giving hope and encouragement to other young people living in similar circumstances.

Ranulph Fiennes

Sir Ranulph Fiennes

Ranulph is a longtime supporter of BHF and knows firsthand the dangers of heart disease. In 2003, he suffered a heart attack followed by several cardiac arrests. He then underwent emergency heart bypass surgery performed by our heart surgeon, Professor Angelini.

Although he leads an active lifestyle, Ranulph has shown that heart disease can strike almost anyone.

Ranulph fully credits the amazing work of our own teacher Angelini for saving his life and enabling him to continue doing what he loves to take on huge climbs, off-road marathons and other extreme challenges.

Ranulph has supported many campaigns and events, including our most recent Beating Hearts Ball.

Sarah Fergusson

Sarah Fergusson

Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York, is passionate about helping to highlight the devastating effects of heart and circulatory disease, especially in women. Sadly, she knows firsthand the devastating impact of heart disease, which tragically claimed the life of a close family friend, Miles Frost, son of the late Sir David Frost.

Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York, has been involved in many initiatives, campaigns and events, including visiting our research centers, speaking at events and, most recently, participating in our annual Heart Hero Awards as as judge and presenter.

mac twins

mac twins

The Macfarlane twins, Lisa and Alana, are DJs, presenters, authors and founders of The gut stuff – a place that promotes good intestinal health.

In 2014, Lisa and Alana’s life changed forever when their father, Kenny, died suddenly of a heart attack while playing golf at the age of 58. Since that tragic incident, Lisa and Alana have been committed to supporting BHF’s lifesaving research.

Over the years the twins have done many things to support the BHF, from running the London Marathon in memory of their father to attending and DJing at many of our fundraising events such as our Annual Heart Hero Awards. They recently hosted a cook with one of our corporate partners, Mindful Chef.

Lisa and Alana have been such wonderful supporters of BHF over the years and we are delighted to have them as our ambassadors.

Pippa Middleton

Pippa Middleton

Pippa has been a supporter of BHF for many years, being involved in several fundraising initiatives and campaigns including the epic 3,000 mile Race Across America cycling challenge and BHF’s flagship London to Brighton Bike Ride.

Pippa has attended events, donated prizes, supported corporate partnerships, and raised vital funds for our lifesaving research by creating a heart-healthy cookbook, Heartfelt, which is available in our online store.

Buy Heartfelt online

Luc Prichard

Luc Prichard

Frontman of legendary indie rock band The Kooks, Luke Pritchard has a very personal connection to the BHF. He was only three years old when his father died of a heart attack – an event that influenced his career and his music. Luke understands the devastating reality of heart and circulatory disease, which is why supporting BHF is so important to Luke.

Luke has supported the BHF over the past few years, including participating in our Heart Hero Awards as a judge, presenter and performer. It’s an honor to have Luke as our BHF Ambassador and we can’t wait to see what we can create together.

Lady Esther Rantzen

Lady Esther Rantzen

Journalist and TV presenter Esther Rantzen started supporting us when she used our home stores’ free collection service to help her move house.

Esther’s late husband, documentary filmmaker Desmond Wilcox, battled heart disease for years, which is why she’s also passionate about our life-saving research.

Over the years, Esther has supported various initiatives including retail campaigns and our volunteer program. She continues to be a regular donor to our BHF stores.

David and Franky

David and Frankie Seaman

David and Frankie Seaman became BHF Ambassadors in September 2021, having been fantastic BHF supporters for many years. They have been involved in many different events and campaigns, including our flagship London to Brighton event which saw David ride his bike, Frankie was a member of the Beating Hearts Ball committee, David hosted our online football quiz alongside his former footballer Glenn Hoddle, and they have both judged our Heart Hero Awards twice.

It is an honor to have them both as BHF ambassadors and we look forward to their future involvement in our work.

Graeme Souness

Graeme Souness

Former Liverpool FC manager Graeme Souness has been diagnosed with coronary heart disease after 3 of his arteries were blocked. Throughout his life, Graeme underwent several operations and suffered from a heart attack.

Graeme knows firsthand the impact of heart and circulatory disease and is passionate about supporting people going through similar experiences. Graeme has been involved in many campaigns and events, he has visited our labs to learn more about our research and has met heart patients. Most recently, Graeme participated in our annual Heart Hero Awards.

James Taylor

James Taylor

Former England cricketer James Taylor was forced to retire from professional cricket when he was diagnosed with hereditary arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC).

James is passionate about supporting our life-saving research to find new ways to prevent, detect and treat heart disease like CVRA. Over the years James has visited our research lab at St Thomas’s Hospital with fellow BHF Ambassador Graeme Souness, he has supported various fundraising campaigns and events and he has been involved with BHF’s Heart Hero Awards in as judge and presenter.

Dr Hazel Wallace

Dr Hazel Wallace

Hazel was only 14 when she lost her father to a stroke. This is why Hazel became a doctor and started The Food Medic – an educational platform that provides advice on the latest thinking and developments in nutrition and other lifestyle factors.

Hazel’s interest in health stems from her passion to help prevent others from losing their parents and loved ones before their time.

Hazel has been supporting the BHF since 2017 in various ways, such as hosting various events, using her platform to help educate the public about heart disease.

She has supported corporate partnerships, including our current partnership with Tesco, and most recently featured prominently in the Heart FM x BHF “World Heart Day” collaboration. Additionally, Hazel often posts information about BHF and the work we do, educating and raising awareness of her many followers.