When news happens, text BONEWS and your photos to 80360 or phone 01204 537274
Life-saving machines unveiled in village
11:41am Thursday 28th February 2013 in News
MEDICAL equipment for saving lives has been installed in three locations in Tottington.
Former Bolton Wanderers footballer Fabrice Muamba, who collapsed on the pitch after suffering a cardiac arrest last year, visited the village to officially launch the defibrillators.
They were bought after a fundraising appeal led by Judith Kelly, of Rhine Close, who heard about community defibrillators by speaking to local police officers.
She set up a group, named Tottington Community Defibrillator Appeal Group, and raised thousands of pounds.
Around 50 people gathered outside Helen’s Flowers, in Market Street, awaiting the arrival of the football star last Wednesday.
Among them was the Mayor Of Bury, Councillor Joan Grimshaw, Bury North MP, David Nuttall, and pupils from Tottington and Christ Church Walshaw primary schools.
Mrs Kelly gave a short speech, before Fabrice cut the ribbon tied around a defibrillator.
He said: “The whole point of having defibrillators in public places is that they can help people who suffer a cardiac arrest and it’s one of the machines that was used on me. Hopefully they will be available in more public places to help people.
“It’s been very impressive that a crowd has come out here today and everyone has raised the money. It shows how much it means to people.
“It’s great to be here and celebrate how well they have done.”
Steve Hayes, from Arrhythmia Alliance’s Hearts And Goals campaign, which Fabrice fronts, said: “The campaign is about placing defibrillators in communities up and down the UK and it’s fantastic that this device is now here for the community.
“I would encourage people in Tottington to notice this device is here and use it if needed. It’s a fine example to everyone else.”
Community defibrillators are now in place outside Helen’s Flowers; Victoria Hotel, in Hall Street, Walshaw; and the Lamb Inn, in Tottington Road.
If someone suffered a cardiac arrest, the equipment could be used by members of the public to restart the patient’s heart.
Two defibrillators were donated to the village — one by manufacturer HeartSine and another by the North West Ambulance Service.
East Lancashire Masonic Charity donated £3,120, a grant of £1,900 was given by the William Openshaw Street Fund and a fundraiser by Peel Lions made £1,067. There were also donations from local businesses and members of the public, including weekly donations by Knitting Basket Knitting Group.
Mrs Kelly said: “I am so proud of Tottington as it has been such hard work and it really is a community effort that has got us where we are today.
“Although we have raised this money and are up and running, we will be having other fundraising events in the future to cover ongoing costs.”
She thanked the committee members and everyone else involved in fundraising.