THERE is a chance to learn some potentially life-saving skills for free in Festival Place next weekend.

Volunteers from the St John Ambulance will be holding demonstrations in an empty shop on the ground floor next to Gregg’s on Saturday 28 and Sunday 29 September.

At the ‘Big First Aid Weekend’, people will be able to learn how to perform CPR, how to use a defibrillator, how to treat choking, asthma attacks and bleeding.

Josh Hensman, unit manager for Basingstoke St John Ambulance, said: “I am so excited about the Big First Aid Weekend.

“Basic first aid skills can save a life and ten minutes with one of our amazing volunteers may give you the skills you need to help someone in need.

“You never know when you may need to act in an emergency and knowing you have the skills will help you do your part in making Basingstoke that little bit safer.”

As well as learning the skills, St John’s youth programme’s mascot Bertie Badger will be out and about in the shopping centre, giving life-saving first aid pocket cards to children.

There will also be regular CPR competitions for “undercover first aid experts” visiting the team over the weekend.