In a bid to dramatically increase the number of people in the area with the skills to save a life in an emergency, Specsavers and Heartsafe UK are urging local businesses to join a brand new Heartsafe Tameside campaign.

In support of Heartsafe Ashton, Specsavers in the Ladysmith Shopping Centre are backing the campaign, sponsoring educational packs.

Now, Heartsafe UK are sending a free, potentially life-saving information pack to 1,000 businesses in the town to share with employees and customers in the area.

Currently, only one in 10 people in the UK know how to administer CPR (cardio pulmonary resuscitation). This first stage of Heartsafe Tameside aims to improve that statistic across Ashton, specifically among those who work with members of the public, so that they have the skills to act if a member of the public collapses in front of them.

Ultimately, Heartsafe Tameside hopes that those in the service industry across all of Tameside will become potential lifesavers, making the whole area a Heartsafe Zone.

Partnering with Heartsafe UK, Specsavers Ashton are championing the cause. The store are sponsoring the packs and are working towards installing a defibrillator in the store in the near future. It is calling on other businesses in the area to also pick up the baton and do their bit to ensure Ashton becomes a Heartsafe Zone.

James Richardson, store director at the Ladysmith Shopping Centre store, said: ‘This is all about people in Ashton doing their bit to ensure that, as a community, we’re able to look after each other. We’d all hope that if the worst happened to a loved one, someone would be around who knew how to save their life.

The reality is, at the moment, the odds are against us, and most people don’t know how to administer CPR. That’s why we’re championing this campaign to see Ashton become a Heartsafe Zone.’

Kevin Dryburgh, founder of Heartsafe UK, added: ‘90,000 adults and 600 young people die every year following cardiac arrest in a public place. Often, these deaths are preventable. We’re calling on the people of Ashton to act before it’s too late to avoid the preventable deaths of our friends, families and colleagues: any one of us could collapse in the town centre tomorrow.

The support from Specsavers in launching Heartsafe Tameside has been fantastic, and we hope to see other businesses in the area inspired to follow suit. Something as simple as an emergency response first aid wall chart arms us with the information needed to act fast in an emergency.

Ashton is a close-knit community, and we’re relying on the support of businesses as well as individuals to ensure that we are looking after each other.’

Anyone wishing to purchase a lifesaving pack for a small cost should contact Heartsafe UK at info@heartsafeuk.co.uk.

For more information about Heartsafe UK, visit www.heartsafe.org.uk.

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