Defibrillator installed in village phonebox

Defibrillator Kesh -5

LIFE-SAVER… Back from left, Paula Powell, Red Cross, Jimmy Robinson, BT and Bert Johnston, Chairman of Fermanagh District Council. Front from left, Amanda Keys, Kesh Defibrillator and Walter Diver, Red Cross

RESIDENTS in Kesh have seen the launch of a piece of medical equipment that could save lives.

The defibrillator is accessible to everyone in the town, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, thanks to its location in a BT phonebox at Rosscolban Avenue on Main Street.


As well as being quickly available to heart failure victims needing it in an emergency, the apparatus is within easy reach of the 53 local people who have succesfully completed Red Cross Basic Life Support and AED training courses.

The defibrillator project is the latest in a series of community defibrillators which have been installed across the North, thanks to a partnership between the Red Cross, BT Northern Ireland, and local communities, mostly in rural areas.

The Kesh defibrillator is the fourth thanks to this project in Northern Ireland so far, but a ‘first’ in Fermanagh.

Brian Higgins, a local Red Cross volunteer, who has worked closely with the Kesh Defibrillator Group, has paid tribute to the local community.

“We are delighted to see it installed at a location which provides excellent public access, and we are very grateful for the fundraising support we have received from so many people.”

He thanked all the sponsoring businesses, those who had donated money, the members and committee of the Kesh Defibrillator Group, in particular, to Julie Stronge.

“She has been the driving force behind the project,” he said.


He also thanked the people of Kesh and his Red Cross colleagues, Nathan Chambers and Louise Johnston who had helped deliver the first aid training.

Paula Powell from the Red Cross said her charity had received huge interest in community defibrillators since the first one launched in Crossgar last year.

“We are really pleased to see the Kesh project come to fruition. Of course while the defibrillator is key, the other vital component has been the first aid training as this is what gives ordinary people, rather than medical professionals, the confidence to act when facing an emergency situation.”

The ongoing maintenance costs of keeping the defibrillator ready for action will be covered by the Kesh Defibrillator Group in conjunction with Fermanagh District Council.

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