Adrian Wood, Chairman of Washington Cricket Club (left) with Phil Hopps from Rotary Washington Forge

Defibrillator installed at Washington Cricket Club

A POTENTIALLY life-saving piece of equipment is set to bolster the local area after a community public access defibrillator was installed at Washington Cricket Club.

In a joint effort between the club, Rotary Washington Forge and the area’s local councillor, the cPAD – used to attempt to correct someone’s heart rhythm if they are in cardiac arrest – has now landed at the Rickleton facility and is ready for emergency use.

A sponsored Coast to Coast cycle ride and other events originally helped to raise funds for a defibrillator for the clubhouse in 2015, and now the community has finally taken the leap.

Adrian Wood, Chairman of Washington Cricket Club, said: “When we became aware that the local resident’s association was hoping to raise the money to have a defibrillator in the village, we saw this as an ideal opportunity to help by making our defib accessible 24/7.

“We discussed this with Rotary Washington Forge, which is involved in an ongoing community defibrillator project, and all that was needed was the installation of a secure outside cabinet.”

Rotary project team member Phil Hopps added: “Rotary is working to improve the availability of cPADs across Washington and it was great news when the cricket club came forward with the idea of making their existing unit available to the community.

“We are grateful for the support given by Cllr Louise Farthing who sponsored our funding grant application from the Washington Area Committee and to local electrician, Len Cole, who kindly installed the cabinet for us.”

Coun Louise Farthing, of the Washington South Ward, said: “I am delighted that Rotary Washington Forge and Washington Cricket Club have been able to come together to provide a defibrillator for Rickleton Village. I know that it has been a long-held ambition for Rickleton Residents Association to have such a facility sited in the village.

“I am equally pleased that Washington Way is running this article so that more people can learn about these provisions across Washington which have been put in place through the aegis of Rotary Washington Forge. It’s an example of great partnership working.”

The new cPAD has been added to the existing North East Ambulance Service regional defibrillator network, and the service is able to provide the entry code to the cabinet in cases of emergency involving possible cardiac arrests.

While no training is needed to use a defibrillator, plans are afoot to organise training days to familiarise local community members on the subject of CPR and the operation of the equipment.