A LIMITED-ACCESS defibrillator at a football club has been made publicly-accessible thanks to funds raised in memory of a popular club member and a grant from the local ward alliance.
The defibrillator at Worsbrough Bridge Athletic Football Club has been in place on matchdays but is now available to the public to use at any time, as per directions given after calling 999.
Ray Pinder, 53, whose father Lesley was involved with the club and passed away from a heart attack last year, was a key organiser in the fundraising.
His family asked for donations at Lesley’s funeral to go towards a new publicly accessible box for the lifesaving equipment.
“My dad used to help out at the club and played a lot of games for them in his life, and I know the chairman really well,” said Ray.
“He would have hated for any donations to have been lost in a big donation to charity, so he would have wanted something bespoke which would really help the community.
“We came up with making the defibrillator more accessible.
“The hope is that nobody will ever really have to use it, but if it does save one person’s life then it’s worth it.
“My mum’s been really upset by all of this and it’s nice to see something positive happening.”
Donations on the day of the funeral brought in over £700, and donations continued in the weeks after.
The football club funded the installation of the box, and a grant from the Worsbrough Ward Alliance also helped with the project.
Coun John Clarke, chair of the ward alliance, said: “We’re really pleased that the defibrillator at Worsbrough Bridge will now become accessible to the public at all times.
“As we work together to make Barnsley the place of possibilities, the health and wellbeing of our communities is a priority, and we’re doing what we can to make sure people can access the help and support they need, at the right place and time.
“The defibrillator will now be one of four public access defibrillators in the Worsbrough ward, with another planned to be installed at Worsbrough Mill, available to help our residents if they need it.
“We send our condolences to Les Pinder’s loved ones, friends and family, and thank them for their fantastic fundraising work to help fund the defibrillator cabinet alongside Worsbrough Ward Alliance funding.”
Coun Jenny Platts, cabinet spokesperson for adults and communities, added: “I’m always proud of the community spirit we have in our borough, and this is a fantastic example of Barnsley people coming together to fundraise and support the health and wellbeing of those in their communities.
“I’m really pleased that through fundraising efforts in the local community, and funding from the ward alliance, we’re able to improve access for everyone to lifesaving equipment.”