Appeal for more heart-starting device locations around Sleaford

Could you help to save a life by offering a space for a defibrillator? EMN-170424-182103001
Could you help to save a life by offering a space for a defibrillator? EMN-170424-182103001

A Sleaford couple are encouraging others to come forward like they did to offer space for a life-saving defibrillator to make sure there is one within easy reach anywhere in the community.

Ronald and Barbara Clark responded to a leaflet drop by members of Sleaford Round Table fundraising for the SHOCK Sleaford scheme to install automated defibrillators available for public use all over the town and surrounding villages.

The couple agreed to allow a defibrillator box to be fitted to the wall of their house, close to the pavement on Rookery Avenue for the public to use in an emergency nearby.

With no public buildings or businesses to approach, the SHOCK Sleaford team had been scratching their heads where they could locate a box to ensure there is always one within 300m of a cardiac emergency. They came up with a leaflet drop inviting householders to volunteer and the Clarks came forward. It is the first box in town to be fitted to a residential property and now the team would like other households to come forward to fill the final gaps in the network.

Mrs Clark, a retired mental health nurse, told The Standard: “We don’t mind it being on the side of the house - it doesn’t disturb us. You never know - we might need to use it one day.

“You have to think sensibly, with ambulances taking longer sometimes, you have to have something to save a life and there are little courses you can go on to know how to use them.”

The couple had asked the county council to leave a street light on all night so people could see to punch in the code to unlock the box when needed, but the wrong one was adjusted. After being contacted by The Standard, the council promised to return and illuminate the right one.

Christian Slingsby of SHOCK Sleaford said they also have a defibrillator fitted to a resident’s fence on Southfields as a result of the same leaflet drop.

He did not know if the Clark’s defibrillator had been used yet and said: “We had got permission from St Botolph’s School round the corner but it would have been inaccessible when the gates are locked. I just went and put a load of leaflets through doors and they kindly called back , we met and the rest is history.

“We do need someone on Clay Hill Road area to come forward still as we have a gap there. We could do with one at the bottom of The Drove and in the estate opposite the police station off Boston Road,” he said.

Mrs Clark agreed that Clay Hill Road was an area that really should be covered too due to its distance from the town centre.

Mr Slingsby said: “If we can get four more units up in Sleaford we would be fully covered. We know they have been used and to good effect.”

Mr Slingsby said Sleaford Golf Club had agreed to have one on their wall for use by Greylees residents and another inside the clubhouse. Now they needed to turn their attention to the surrounding villages.

They have fitted one at Pointon School and another is being fitted at Abbey Parks Farm Shop in East Heckington.

He said: “We are continually trying to raise funds and find locations. We have about 17 boxes up at the moment and are hoping to get LIVES on board as well.”

Anyone wishing to get in touch to offer space for a defibrillator, for more information or to donate towards SHOCK Sleaford, call 07904 160096, email: enquiries@SHOCKSleaford.co.uk or visit their webpage at: www.SHOCKSleaford.co.uk