An appeal to fund life-saving defibrillators in Shoreham town centre has almost raised enough to buy the first piece of equipment just weeks after it was launched.
Shoreham Insurance Services, which has offices in John Street, has joined forces with councillor Joss Loader, chairman of Adur District Council, to support her district-wide community defibrillator appeal.
The company has already raised almost £1,000 through an online campaign for the town centre’s first defibrillator, which has been earmarked for location outside The Bridge Inn on Shoreham High Street.
The equipment will be purchased from Sussex Heart Charity.
A spokesman for Shoreham Insurance Services said: “One of the co-owners at Shoreham Insurance Services lost a close family member late last year due to a sudden and unexpected cardiac arrest.
“Defibrillator machines were discussed a few months later in the office and the idea of an appeal in the local area to raise funds to have a defibrillator installed externally was suggested.
“To have these machines available 24/7 and also to raise the awareness of exactly what they are and how to use them is an excellent idea.”
Ms Loader launched her year-long community defibrillator appeal to provide life-saving, publicly accessible machines across Adur when she was elected as council chairman in May.
Thanks to the appeal, Shoreham Beach Residents’ Association installed two defibrillators on Shoreham Beach in Ferry Road and at the Church of the Good Shepherd earlier this year.
Ms Loader thanked Shoreham Insurance Services ‘for achieving so much in a very short period of time’.
She said: “I am now working with local community groups to try to ensure that all areas have 24/7 access to these great machines.
“I am doing this in memory of my late father, Brian Hollebone, who died very suddenly from a catastrophic heart attack more than 30 years ago, when defibrillators were not available.
“If just one resident’s life can be saved, I shall consider it a job very well done.
“I have already had a very encouraging response.”
To support the appeal, visit www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/shorehamdefib