Congratulations to all involved in the planning and fundraising for the installation of an Automated External Defibrillator at Newquay Activity Centre (NAC). Rob Barber, owner of Newquay Activity Centre, said “as soon as we heard about the opportunity to support the community and provide the space and funding support for this life saving piece of equipment, we knew we wanted to be involved”.
The project first surfaced with Katie Richards and her tribe of wild Swimminwimmin, a Newquay based community interest company that fundraises for local causes. Katie said “we decided on a defibrillator as it’s something we all hope we’ll never need, but that could potentially save the life of any one of us. We researched the existing locations in the local area and approached Newquay Activity Centre, as a centrally located business also associated with the sea and beaches, and they welcomed the idea.”
The prospect sent ripples of goodwill across the local business community, and many generous souls got stuck in to help make the dream of an NAC defibrillator a reality. Rob, Freddie, and the Newquay Activity Centre instructor team delivered a whole series of sunset paddle board, coasteering, surf, kayak and super SUP activities, providing their time, facilities and equipment for free so that all of the proceeds could go directly to the defibrillator fund. Particular thanks must also be given to Simon at Fore Street Cafe who’s sensational cookery went down a storm at the swimminwimmin Paella evening, and Wayne, Sam & Jay from Black Ink Rebellion whose ingenious tattoo flash sale gave a huge boost to the charitable fund.
Justine Sore grew up in Newquay and knows first hand the importance of lifesaving equipment; she tragically lost her brother Toby Sore to a cardiac arrest 30 years ago. Toby was a popular lad around town and a rising star on the Newquay surf scene, his death was unexpected and incredibly sad, so for Justine and many others in the community, the installation of this defibrillator is deeply personal.
“My family knows the life altering grief that comes from losing a loved one to a cardiac arrest. This defibrillator is a hugely positive and important community asset, I take great comfort in knowing it’s in place should anybody be in desperate need”
The British Heart Foundation reports that there are over 30,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests in the UK every year, of which fewer than 1 in 10 people survive. Dr Charmaine Griffiths, CEO of the foundation states, “A cardiac arrest can happen anywhere, at any time, but quick CPR and defibrillation can double someone’s chance of survival. Minutes count and knowing where the nearest defibrillator is could be the difference between life and death.
Newquay Activity Centre is in a prime location to put this lifesaving resource within easy reach of a large residential community, a multitude of coffee shops, guest houses and independent businesses, as well as the surfers, swimmers and beach lovers visiting the glorious sands of Towan, one of the most popular beaches in Cornwall. The address is 60 Fore Street, opposite The Fort pub, and just above our bustling working harbour and RNLI station.
Rob Barber of NAC says, “getting the defibrillator installed is just the first hurdle overcome, the next vital step is to spread the news of its existence throughout the community and online, to ensure the defibrillator is discoverable, and utilised in the event of an emergency. The defibrillator won’t save lives if left hanging on the wall, so we really want Newquay residents and visiting holiday makers to think of NAC as a community hub, and somewhere to come if they need help in an emergency.”
As such, Rob is issuing an open invitation to the Fore Street, Towan & Harbour community, as well as any interested parties, to attend an Automated External Defibrillator training session which will be held at Newquay Activity Centre on Wednesday 1st March at 2pm.
Newquay Activity Centre runs courses accredited by The Royal Life Saving Society, and Surf Life Saving Great Britain, and has arranged for Mark Kelly, owner of four elements adventure and specialist instructor on NAC’s Outdoor Activity Instructor Course (OAIC) to deliver the defibrillator training session in person. Mark says that “possessing proper CPR training is critical now more than ever with the increased pressures on the NHS. The Automated External Defibrillator is a lifesaving piece of equipment used in combination with CPR, that anybody can learn to use, and I look forward to sharing the knowledge with the local community”.
Automated External Defibrillator location: Newquay Activity Centre, 60 Fore Street, Newquay, TR7 1LW