The Parish Council is investigating the possibility of installing a heart defibrillator in the village.

In view of the fact we are a busy tourist destination the Parish Council are investigating the possibility of installing a heart defibrillator in the village. We have taken the advice of the South Central Ambulance Service who are very keen that we should get one installed somewhere central in the village in view of the distance we are from the nearest casualty department. The British Heart Foundation are running a scheme to help finance defibrillators in rural areas and we have applied to them for funding with balance to be financed by a generous local donor. We are currently trying to decide on the best location for the machine with the forecourt of the Village Hall our preference at the moment. We originally wanted to locate it in the village phone box but this has not proved possible due to the old red box being listed!

The type of defibrillator that we are planning to acquire is designed to be used by untrained people but we are keen to get as many people as possible in the village to come to a training session that the South Central Ambulance Service will run for us. We are intending to contact those people in the village who we feel would benefit from this training starting with the first aiders from Fairweather’s Garden Centre, the village school and the Montagu Arms.

When there is a medical emergency in the village and a 999 call is made to the ambulance service, they will tell the caller where the defibrillator is located and will stay on the phone to give instructions as to how to use it. In addition, the machine itself gives very clear audio operating instructions.  As a safety precaution these machines are designed so that they will only give the patient a shock to get the heart back into its proper rhythm if it is needed so they are fairly foolproof to operate and they definitely save lives.

We will keep you posted on our progress in getting a machine installed in the village but in the meantime if anyone has any views on where the best location for it would be or would like to be trained on its use, please ring Sara Steele on 01590 612 216.