A NEWly installed defibrillator is now ready for community use thanks to the team effort of a York football club and City Council.
Haxby Town Junior and Senior Football Clubs have worked together with Haxby City Council to install a municipal defibrillator at the Ethel Ward Playing Fields in Haxby, home to 25 teams.
The defibrillator was declared fully operational for the community on Friday June 17th.
Football Association Level 1 coach and Haxby Town Juniors Football Club board member David Blakemore told The Press that the club decided they needed a defibrillator after footballer Christian Eriksen suffered one during the opening Euro 2020 match in Denmark in June 2021 suffered cardiac arrest.
David said: “This event was watched by many senior and junior players at Haxby and we saw immediate CPR and defibrillation save his life.
“Quick action was required and clubs joined forces to immediately purchase a defibrillator to be used in the event of cardiac arrest by junior or senior players, parents or fans alike.”
The defibrillator was funded in part by the Football Association and Premier League Defibrillator Funds, which installed the device in the pitch’s pavilion within a week.
The municipality then supplied the secure, electrical and heated cabinet to safely install the device.
Haxby Councilor Mark Preston, who is also a board member of Haxby Town Football Club and has served as the club’s chairman in the past, helped make this cabinet possible, along with Grant Cockburn, the council chairman, and Leanna Welch, the town clerk.
Cllr Mark Prestion said: “As a councilor and a member of the football club, it was recognized that there was an urgent need to have a defibrillator available.
“Once the juniors bought the device, the seniors suggested to HTC that the pavilion be their facility.
“There were some delays due to COVID protocols and grant applications, but it was gratifying to see all three parties working towards a common goal.
“This was an excellent community and team effort to bring this emergency kit to the public.”
Grant Cockburn, leader of Haxby City Council, said: “Haxby City Council is delighted that a new defibrillator has been installed in the pavilion on Ethel Ward’s pitches.
“This was accomplished in partnership with Haxby Town Junior Football Club and will be a valuable resource for the community.”
Haxby Town Football Club was formed 20 years ago to create a place for young footballers in York.