A first aider who fought to save a man’s life after he suffered a heart attack in a car park has been thanked for her efforts, though the local authority now faces questions about ambulance response times.

Julie Robinson, 54, was working at the UK’s Frinton’s Triangle Shopping Centre when a 65 year old man collapsed.

She immediately called an ambulance and with the help of two other trained first aiders who happened to be on the spot, she worked to keep the man breathing.

A paramedic arrived about 20 minutes later and took over, but the ambulance took nearly an hour to arrive.

Julie said: “The paramedic was constantly calling up the service trying to get an ambulance.

“It took a long time to get there in the end. That’s not good enough when the man was fighting for his life.”

The ambulance authority has apologised, saying the original ambulance sent to the incident was diverted to another accident where a child had suffered severe burns.