Big thank you from

Council to help sports clubs buy life saving defibrillators

The inventor of the defibrillator Professor Frank Pantridge

The inventor of the defibrillator Professor Frank Pantridge

CLUBS in the Lisburn area are to be offered help by the City Council to but* portable defibrillator which can save the lives of heart attack victims. Over the next six months it will offer up to 75% assistance to clubs - a defibrillator costs around £1000 - in a pilot scheme.

The organisations purchasing the equipment will also have access to free training on how to use it provided by Sports Development staff.

Initial funding of £6000 has been ring fenced from within. the Sports Capital Grant 201213 for the pilot scheme. Welcoming the news Councillor Thomas Beckett, Chairman of the Leisure Services Committee said: "During the past 12-18 months there have been a number of well-publicised instances of fatalities or near fatalities arising from cardiovascular incidents involving players or officials participating in soccer or Gaelic games.

"In recent months the Sports Development Officer, with funding assistance from the Department of Health has undertaken training to allow him in turn to provide training as part of a pilot programme to representatives of local sports clubs in the use of portable defibrillators. "The first group of six
representatives from local clubs completed their training in December 2011. The course was oversubscribed and a second course is planned in coming months.

"Arising however from the incidents of fatalities, the Chief Executive has asked the Department to review the availability of such equipment to clubs making the use of Council pitches.

It' is good that in the event of an emergency on the sports field that the defibrillator invented by a Lisburn man is now readily available for use." Alderman Jim Dillon welcomed the pilot scheme. During his time as Mayor Mr Dillon raised money towards defibrillators for local clubs which were invented by his late friend, and Freeman of Lisburn, Professor Frank Pantridge.

Mr Dillon said they were a "very worthwhile piece of equipment' and he was delighted the Council was running the scheme.

Ulster Star