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Life-saving defibrillator launched in Beccles town centre

PUBLISHED: 10:11 22 January 2016 | UPDATED: 10:11 22 January 2016

Supporters of the Beccles community defibrillator project with Beccles mayor Hugh Taylor and Beccles Lions president Keith Moore outside the Citizens Advice Bureau.

Supporters of the Beccles community defibrillator project with Beccles mayor Hugh Taylor and Beccles Lions president Keith Moore outside the Citizens Advice Bureau.

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A life-saving community defibrillator has been installed in Beccles town centre.

Beccles Lions president Keith Moore with the new defribrillator.

PHOTO: Nick ButcherBeccles Lions president Keith Moore with the new defribrillator. PHOTO: Nick Butcher

The town’s first community public access defibrillator was launched last Friday by Beccles mayor Hugh Taylor and Beccles Lions club president Keith Moore.

The defibrillator was installed by the Beccles and District Lions Club and has been placed outside the Citizens Advice Bureau in New Market. The equipment is there to use should someone have a sudden cardiac arrest in the centre of the town.

Mr Moore said: “Although this is a Beccles Lions initiative, the installation of this equipment in the centre of Beccles would not have been possible without the support and help of Beccles Town Council, Beccles Business Association and Beccles Townlands Trust owners of the CAB building.

“A special thank you must go to Janet John and the staff of the CAB who have agreed to monitor the defibrillator by submitting all the necessary weekly, monthly and yearly reports to keep it fully operational.

The new defribrillator.The new defribrillator.

“Equally people and organisations have been very generous, such as councillor Mark Bee, Beccles Helping Hands, Beccles Sunday Club, Beccles Needlecraft Shop and Beccles Shukokai Karate Club. The response has been truly wonderful and we are aiming to have another Public Accessible Community Defibrillator in Beccles.”

The defibrillator is housed in a vandal proof, heated, stainless steel cabinet, guarded by a key pad.

Upon receiving a call the ambulance service will direct the caller to the machine and will issue the access code. A green light on the outside of the cabinet will show when the equipment is ready to use.

The defibrillator also has a voice over instruction mode to aid the user, as well as a video presentation to help those who are hard of hearing.

Mr Taylor said: “I’m delighted to see the community spirit of individuals and businesses coming together to ensure this initiative of Beccles Lions to provide this defibrillator become a reality. It can be a life saver and a much-needed addition in providing help to people within the community. Everyone involved deserves a very big thank you and I’m sure this won’t be the last defibrillator we see within the Beccles community.”

A free community defibrillator seminar is being held at Beccles Library next Saturday, January 30, at 11am, when the Heartbeat Community Trust will demonstrate how to use the equipment and its benefits to the community. The session is open to anyone and no special skills are required.

Beccles Lion Dermot Wesley-Smith, the club’s welfare chairman, added: “We have been working closely with The Community Heartbeat Trust who supplied the equipment. Their advice and guidance has been invaluable and they will be providing continued ‘backup’ service and advice going forward. Also thank you to Simon King the electrician responsible for installing the defibrillator.”

To find out more about the Beccles Lions contact the club secretary Janet Ramsden on 01502 514284 or visit www.beccleslions.org.uk.

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