Many people dream of getting up close and personal with celebrities.

But a local woman took that a step further when she ended up giving popular comedian Ed Byrne the Heimlich Manoeuvre during a training course.

Katie Martin, a volunteer with the Hedingham School and Sixth Form Orienteering Club and a coach at the Essex Stragglers Orienteering Society, attended the course on Friday at the East Mersea Activity Centre.

Katie, 36, of Mitchell Avenue, said: “I already know quite a lot of first aid, but this was more for outdoors and how to care for someone when they are not in accessible area.

“There was a guy there who I thought looked a bit familiar and I recognised his voice.

“Somebody said he was from Mock the Week.

“He was really nice - not up himself at all.

Part of the training including learning how to give the Heimlich Manoeuvre - used to help someone who is choking - and Katie got to practice on Ed.

“I’m not really that into celebrities but it was nice him being there,” the mum-of-two added.

“It made me smile when I flicked onto the TV and saw Ed along with Dara O’Briain in their new TV show.”

Ed Byrne, who is a regular on TV including Father Ted and Have I Got News For You, writes for The Great Outdoors magazine and it is believed he was at the course to write an article about it.

**The Essex Stragglers is holding a fundraiser event to help support Daisy Partridge and Tim Harrison's participation at the World Schools Orienteering Championships 2015 in Antalya, Turkey.

The youngsters have won a place to compete for England but need to raise £850 towards the costs of their flights, team kit, accommodation and food.

On Sunday, at the Castle Park, in Colchester, they have organised a orienteering competition to help raise some of the money.

There will be courses for all abilities available.

Cost is £8 for adults and £2.50 for juniors and students.

Ring 01787 469512 or 07905 286894 for more information.