Lifesaving gift for Fylde school

Defibrillator donated by the Clayton family to AKS Lytham - two students with school matron Helen Hotchkiss
Defibrillator donated by the Clayton family to AKS Lytham - two students with school matron Helen Hotchkiss
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A KIND donation has led to a piece of lifesaving equipment being installed at a Fylde school.

Thanks to Graham Clayton, owner of Claytons Jewellers, St David’s Road South, and the North West Ambulance Service (NWAS), a defibrillator has been given to AKS Lytham, Clifton Drive South, St Annes.

Graham, whose children, Molly, 14 and Alexander, 11, as well as nephew Jack, 13, go to the school, said he was more than happy to help provide the life-saving equipment.

He said: “We have bought it through the North West Ambulance Service. We asked the question at AKS whether they had defibrillators on site. There are some at the Blackpool campus but none at the Lytham campus.

“As a family, we recently had a chat about the situation and felt it was a good thing to provide.

“Me and my brother both went to Arnold, now AKS Blackpool, and felt it would be a good idea.

“We worked with the matron, Helen Hotchkiss at AKS Blackpool, she made some inquiries to the NWAS and they said they would supply one. As it’s a charity they were able to provide one at a reduced cost, with money going to the trust.

“Hopefully it will never be used, but its there in case anything happens.”

In recent years, the use of defibrillators has been brought to wider attention, famously saving the life of former Bolton Wanderers footballer Fabrice Muamba after he suffered a heart attack on the pitch at Tottenham Hotspur’s ground, White Hart Lane, North London.

Helen Hotchkiss, added: “This piece of life-saving equipment can, in the event of sudden cardiac arrest, increase the survival rate by up to 75 per cent.

“A defibrillator is a piece of equipment that we hope we never have to use, but its availability gives us the peace of mind that should the situation arise in school, everything possible could be done to save a life.

“We feel privileged to support such a worthy cause. Obviously this would not be possible without the generous donation from the Clayton family, who have had the foresight to realise what a defibrillator can actually do.”

The donation of the defibrillator follows the efforts of the Lytham St Annes Lions, which following the Swimarathon, held at St Annes YMCA Pool, raised a record £10,200 in sponsorship pledges – meaning the Lions can go ahead with their plan to put life-saving defibrillators into every secondary school in South Fylde.

AKS intends to support the North West Ambulance Trust fund further; a raffle will be held during its Choral Concert on March 23 and all proceeds will go to the trust fund.