A man who was injured at the Westminster Bridge terror attack has spoken about that fateful day and what he is now doing to support other people who may suffer life-changing experiences.

On 22 March 2017, Travis Frain from Darwen was injured when a terrorist drove a hired car into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge in London, before exiting the vehicle and attacking nearby people with a blade. 

A 19-year-old university student at the time, Travis was one of around 50 people injured and six people were killed. 

Travis recovered from his injuries and, since that day, he has been determined to raise awareness of the terrorist threat and campaign for improved vigilance and protection in the hope of preventing such needless trauma and loss of life again. 

He became co-founder of ‘Students in Terror’ and founded the Resilience in Unity Project in 2021, which aims to counter radicalisation by empowering the voices of survivors of terrorism from around the world. 

An advisor for the National Counter-Terrorism Advisory Group, Travis has delivered counter terrorism training workshops to more than 100,000 young people in schools, colleges, and community centres around the UK. His achievements were recognised with an OBE in the King’s New Year’s Honours List. 

Travis has also become a patron for emergency bandages charity, RAPAID, helping to raise awareness of the work they are doing to distribute their life-saving kits to taxis and public places across the UK. 

Marking the seventh anniversary of the Westminster Bridge attacks, Alex Chivers, co-founder of RAPAID spoke to Travis about his work in the fight against terrorism, and the reasons why he’s supporting the RAPAID charity.

Travis said:  “The attack changed my life massively – I went through a long stage of not knowing what I wanted to do career-wise. 

“After a long time of being aimless, I essentially decided that I was going to commit myself to counter-terrorism, and to doing what I could to try and improve things for other victims in future, as well as trying to prevent these kinds of attacks from happening full stop.”

What knowledge and training do you wish you’d had before the incident?
“Honestly, I think any training in this area is better than none. I think that people assume it’s something that will never affect them so they pay very little attention towards the idea of training, so not many people actually have any experience. 

“I believe that at the very least people should be undergoing first aid training so that they can help if they happen to be at the scene of an incident. But, better yet, if people were able to recognise potential warning signs of a terror attack, there would be a much greater chance of minimising injuries and fatalities. 

“It’s vital that people become aware of these signs and are aware of advice from the police, such as ‘stop, hide, tell’, so that we have a much better chance of combatting these incidents in the future.

"Counter terrorism is available free, online for anyone from the ProtectUK website, and it takes less than an hour.”

He said the Resilience and Unity Project seeks to record and disseminate the testimonials of those affected by terrorism.

"I helped found it to raise awareness of these issues and to make it clear to people that these issues can affect anyone. This isn’t just an online space for those affected to memorialise, it’s also an opportunity to essentially engage people in counter-extremism work.

“I think there are a lot of things that we can all do on a daily basis to be more resilient, not just to terrorism but to violence in general.

"For a start, we need to recognise these issues, because it’s inevitable that it will affect us at some point in our lives, whether that be you yourself being involved, or a family or friend – not just from terrorism, but from knife crime and other, more common forms of violence. 

“The bare minimum people can do is first aid training, and any other training on top of that only helps even more to be well prepared. These are simple things that could, one day, save your life or the life of a loved one.”

RAPAID he said is playing a key role in preparing society for the next incident – whether this be terrorism or other violent crimes. 

“They’re also a huge helping hand in accidents, such as if someone cuts themselves on some glass, or other accidents.

"It’s all about preparing society, and equipping us to doing something about any incident that may occur.

"Having RAPAID kits readily available allows members of the public to stabilise injuries, preventing the casualty from bleeding out until the emergency services arrive. They mean that literally anyone could save a life if someone is seriously injured and bleeding.

“I first heard about RAPAID a few years ago – I was signposted to the charity by another victim of the Westminster attacks, a friend of mine who gave me a heads up about what they were doing.

“I reached out to them, and the more I learned about the initiative, the more it became clear to me that I needed to help out, as this is something that is key to my mission as an attack survivor to help future victims."

He went on to support RAPAID as a patron.

Travis said: “Well one thing I’ve often said over the past few years is that I will help out anyone and any initiative that aligns with my goals – those goals being to prevent future attacks, and enable us to respond better to any attacks, whether that is supporting victims, or improving the medial outcomes of those affected. RAPAID lines up perfectly with those goals – so becoming a patron was a no-brainer. 

“As a patron, my aim is essentially to try and use the platform I’ve gained from media attention around my experience to shine a light on what RAPAID are doing to help victims survive violence and empower members of the public to help others in the event of an accident or incident.

“Overwhelmingly, the RAPAID mission has been massively well received by other survivors – so many others have offered their support and wanted to get involved and help out. 

“They see from their own experience how important this cause is, and they want to see these bandage kits distributed to as many locations as possible.

"It’s testament to the importance of the work the charity is doing, and we all need to do our bit to ensure this cause is properly funded and supported nationally – not for the benefit of the organisation, but for the benefit of the country and everyone who lives here.”

With contributions from Alex Chivers, co-founder of RAPAID