Our Parish Council recently completed the installation of a defibrillator at the Three Horseshoes pub. It hasn't been universally supported.  Why?

We now have a defibrillator in the village, a piece of equipment that may one day save one of our lives.  The parish council, for all the negative press that they get, have achieved something good in not only making it happen but to have made it happen without raising our council tax.  They have been supported by fund raising, private partnerships and accessing grants.

Some reaction to this is so negative it amazes me.  Rather than congratulate our council for their achievement of our behalf, rather than see the benefit, rather than be curious on how it helps, they decry, criticise and snub. 

We have a situation where the mindset is so strange that the defibrillator which is attached to the pub - since it’s the only publicly accessible building with an electric supply to charge the device – is avoided because its attached to the pub.  The strange attitude is one that ignores and doesn’t know nor want to know any facts relating to heart attacks and how a defibrillator may save someone.  Instead it is an attitude that thinks, ‘I am not going to use it, I might get sued.’

For those that do want to know and in my mind, that should be everyone, we now have an opportunity to learn.  Where can we do this – Scamblesby!  Without wishing to criticise this decision, I am amazed (again) that people in this village have created a situation whereby the pub is so toxic to some people that despite it advocating its installation and paying for the running costs, an educational meeting about the defibrillator happens in another village.  Why?  Simply because some people won’t go near the pub.  Give me strength.

Our village now has a defibrillator attached to a green box on the porch of the pub.  Step 1:  where is the box, Step 2: how to open the box – probably easier explained at the pub but now that information will be explained at a distance in Scamblesby.  Talking to some of the poor bedevilled parish council members they expect hardly anyone to be there and no one to be there if it was at the pub.  Really?

Most people would be worried they do not have the technical competence to use something like this.  Me too.  A smart person takes some time to find out what the benefit maybe (save a life) and then, if uncertain, would find out they would use it.  If my wife, or children, or friends, or customers happen to be having a heart attack I would like to try and save them.  I will not worry about if they sue me for saving them.

Most importantly, I have the assurance that because I sat on the parish council for a brief period and listened to a brief presentation by LIVES that this idiot proof piece of equipment cannot harm a healthy person and will not revive a dead person.  I have the knowledge that for survival, action is best taken within 8 minutes and I know that in Goulceby we are sometimes a long way from help – especially if our LIVES volunteers in this village are out shopping.

I am no medic but I would like to know how to deal with this situation if something should happen.  What I have found out is that it is simple but without this confidence in its simplicity I perhaps would not act quickly enough and would simply rely on someone else saving the life of a person I could have saved myself.  If they did die, I would not live happily with myself.

I will be at this presentation in Scamblesby but I wish it was a meeting by the defibrillator in Goulceby.

I urge all local people to be there with an open mind.  Don’t let the minds of fools by your eyes.  Sometimes we are far to British in keeping our mouths closed.  Letting the fools and despots have the narrative of our village has led to one village asset which could have held the meeting easily and conveniently for all our villagers being abandoned because of hostility in favour of a training and information meeting about this new village asset happening in another village.

No doubt me saying this annoys some.  So be it.  If that’s how these people want to think that’s up to them but for most of you I sincerely hope that in writing this gets you participate in coming along, having an open mind and then deciding what you would do, heaven forbid, in that situation of life or death.


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