June 25th, 2021
Racers rally to Abbeystead aid with gift towards life-saving asset
The life-saving benefit of having access to a defibrillator was thrust into the spotlight at the Euro 2020 Championship when Denmark’s Christian Eriksen suffered a cardiac arrest while playing for his country against Finland.
Much to everyone’s relief the former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder now appears to be on the road to recovery though his career as a professional footballer may have come to a premature end. The incident highlighted the importance of having such a vital piece of equipment within easy reach and now it’s thanks to the efforts of Over Wyresdale Parish Council that residents and visitors to Abbeystead have such a facility to hand.
Providing such an asset doesn’t come cheap so when organisers of the Legend Fires North West Stages Rally donated £500, around a third of the total cost, it helped accelerate the installation of the life-saving equipment in the former village telephone box.
Parish Council Chair Mark Atkinson said “We wanted to locate an accessible defibrillator in the village and we’re very grateful to all those who supported us achieve our goal. Once covid-19 government advice allows we plan to run training sessions for first responders to compliment those who are already qualified as part of their work duties.”
Local rally ace Darren Atkinson is one likely to take the course but it’s unlikely he’ll be racing to the scene of any emergency in his rally car! Darren said “I’ve lived locally all my life and I attended the village school opposite the phone box that now houses the defibrillator so it means a lot to me to be able to help the local community.”
North West Stages Rally Deputy Clerk of the Course Mark Hothersall said “I first met with the Parish Councillors in the build-up to the 2019 event and given the help they gave us I was delighted when the opportunity arose for us to help them provide this wonderful facility in the heart of the village.”
Photo: www.pro-rally.co.uk – Pictured Left to right: Mark Hothersall, Parish Councillors John Drinkall and Mark Atkinson, Darren Atkinson, Parish Councillor Barry Pye.