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Village pub is all heart

Aldworth's Bell Inn funds defibrillator

Village pub is all heart

A WEST Berkshire pub has become the latest community building to install a life-saving device.

Heartstart Thatcham formed a partnership with Mary Macaulay at the Bell Inn at Aldworth after she called about placing a defibrillator in the pub.

Mrs Macaulay had mentioned the idea of a defibrillator to staff and patrons, highlighting the difference a device can make, compared to just CPR alone.

With this in mind, the pub took up the idea of fundraising for a life-saving device.

Mrs Macaulay said: “We decided to open the pub on a Monday night, which is unheard of, for a quiz with entry by ticket only.

“We had some fantastic raffle prizes donated by local business and a very kind donation of a painting to auction on the evening.” 

The event saw staff donate their wages and patrons donating loose change and a defibrillator was soon on order.

Heartstart Thatcham’s team delivered two training sessions to staff and patrons, who took to the device easily.

Scheme coordinator Dr Nick Young said: “Installing devices is only part of the story. You need to also let people know it is there and remove their fear of using it, which is why we run sessions at venues where we have units installed.

“Placing a unit increases chance of survival, but in remote villages such as Aldworth even more so, and bystander intervention is critical.

“This is not only the first unit and training in a pub we have done but also one where it has involved the whole community, either in fundraising or training and we hope many others will follow their example.”

The team will visit Aldworth again in 2017 to deliver additional training to villagers.

Heartstart Thatcham has installed 36 defibrillators throughout West Berkshire since October 2014 and has trained more than 700 people since August 2013.

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