Life­sav­ing work Old phone box gets new life as lo­ca­tion for de­fib­ril­la­tor

Gloucestershire Echo - - NEWS - Robin JENK­INS robin.jenk­[email protected]­

IT might not look any­thing spe­cial but this old red phone box in Chel­tenham’s Prom­e­nade could save your life.

One of sev­eral in the street that are close to Cavendish House, the for­mer phone box out­side Cafe Rouge has been fit­ted with a de­fib­ril­la­tor.

Funded by the Chel­tenham Busi­ness Im­prove­ment District, it means a life­sav­ing de­fib­ril­la­tor is avail­able 24-hours a day in the town cen­tre for the first time.

As part of the Pub­lic Hearts Ap­peal Chel­tenham, the BID has also fi­nanced two re­place­ment de­fib­ril­la­tors in Mont­pel­lier, also in dis­used tele­phone boxes.

Clare Seed, of Ti­dal Train­ing Di­rect and co-founder of the ap­peal, said: “We’ve been try­ing to find a suit­able site in the town cen­tre for a de­fib that can be avail­able at any time of the day and night and are de­lighted the BID has been able to make this hap­pen.

“It re­ally could make the dif­fer­ence be­tween life and death if some­one has a car­diac ar­rest in the area.”

The ap­peal aims to raise enough money to en­sure that no-one is ever more than 200 me­tres away from a de­fib­ril­la­tor in Chel­tenham town cen­tre.

A num­ber of bars and busi­nesses in the BID zone are sup­port­ing the ap­peal by hav­ing col­lec­tions in their premises with the aim of in­stalling de­fib­ril­la­tors. They in­clude The Bank House, The Spec­tre, Yates, Rev­o­lu­tion, The United Ser­vices Club, Cir­cus Bar, The Bee­hive, The Clarence So­cial, The Sta­ble, Whit­tle Taps and Smokey Joe’s.

The col­lec­tions have al­ready raised more than £600, with The United Ser­vices Club alone rais­ing £180. Ke­van Black­ad­der, Di­rec­tor of Chel­tenham BID, said: “We wanted to sup­port the great work our bars and busi­nesses are do­ing by fund­ing de­fibs that can be ac­ces­si­ble at any time.

“It will make Chel­tenham town cen­tre a safer place to both work and visit.”

The life-sav­ing equip­ment is easy for any­one to use and can be car­ried to the pa­tient.

Any­one who sus­pects some­one is hav­ing a car­diac ar­rest should call 999, tell the emer­gency op­er­a­tor you need to ac­cess the de­fib­ril­la­tor and tell them your lo­ca­tion.

They will con­firm the code to un­lock the door and talk you through the use of the de­fib­ril­la­tor.

Pub­lic Hearts Ap­peal Chel­tenham is a joint ini­tia­tive be­ing run by the BID, Ti­dal Train­ing Di­rect, Chris Hickey - a car­diac ar­rest sur­vivor, Car­diac Science, South West Am­bu­lance Ser­vice and Glouces­ter­shire Po­lice.

Chel­tenham Trust, which man­ages the phone boxes on The Prom, and Chel­tenham Bor­ough Coun­cil, which owns them, sup­ported the BID’S plan to in­stall the new de­vice.

Li­cenc­ing of­fi­cer PC Steve Kier­nan, Chris Hickey of PUB­LIC Hearts, Ke­van Black­ad­der of Chel­tenham BID and Clare Seed of PUB­LIC Hearts

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