Where’s the nearest defibrillator in Cuckfield?

Public defibs in Cuckfield, Bolnore and Staplefield

Public defibs in Cuckfield, Bolnore and Staplefield

At Cuckfield Life we’d like to encourage everyone living and working in the village to familiarise themselves with the sites of the life-saving defibrillator machines in Cuckfield and Bolnore and learn how to use them.

Cuckfield resident Wendy Tracey-Roberts Macrae has been working hard to ensure that two new defibrillator units are back up and running in the village.

Fellow resident and local electrician Guy Richardson has joined Wendy in her fight for safety and has kindly offered to fit the new units for free.

One of the new units has been placed outside Mansell McTaggart Estate Agents on the High Street and will be in the safer coded cabinet. The second unit has been erected on Whitemans Green, again in a safer coded cabinet and with a built-in CCTV camera.

If you notice that the status light is red and not green that indicates a problem with the unit, so please ensure that you report it.

Wendy says that we can all do our bit to help by getting involved. “Once the units are up, it is our responsibility as a village to maintain and check them.”

Funds are still being raised at the Co-op at Whitemans Green where buckets have been placed at the tills.

Please look out for any orange donation boxes in any of the village pubs collecting money by the ISOC (Independent State of Cuckfield) for the purpose of maintaining these two units.

Wendy adds: “The units need replacement batteries and pads every 4-5 years; the pads cost around £45 and the batteries are £300. Ideally, we’d like to encourage the community as a whole to help towards the funding of these life-saving units.”

Any local clubs should aim to register their details with the South East Coast Ambulance Service to enable any 999 call handlers to tell them where their nearest unit is in the village.

A third unit is currently being planned - please watch this space for further news.

If you are interested in finding out more, Wendy is organising a training session on the units but please be aware that there are limited places available. For additional information, please email Wendy direct at wendytrmacrae@aol.com.

There is also an app recommended by the Resuscitation Council. To download the app, visit the website: www.resus.org.uk/apps/lifesaver

Cycling the Marmotte Granfondo

Congratulations to the four Cuckfield dads who braved the gruelling Marmotte Granfondo to raise money to buy a portable defibrillator machine for the village. Now safely back home, Paddy Westbury (inset above) gives his account of the ride – heralded as the toughest one day cycle event in Europe.


By Paddy Westbury

In the past I’ve run a number of marathons and I’ve cycled from John O’Groats to Land’s End and from London to Paris in 24 hours in the pouring rain, but they were nothing compared to a mere 100 miles in the Alps! The Col du Telegraphe and Galibier combine at over 7,000ft of vertical assent in 20 miles, so that’s about 20 times up Ditchling Beacon. But in reality it’s nothing like that – if only it were that easy!

On my journey to the airport, my jolly cabbie asked me what I had in the enormous bag and where I was going. When I explained, he told me a cyclist had died in an accident on Alp d Huez the day before. I was already nervous and that did nothing for my confidence! Driving to the resort I got my first experience of the famous Alp D’Huez climb. Unfeasibly steep, especially at the base, and busy with traffic and cyclists, it made me feel sick and want to go home! This was nothing like I had imagined and so hot too.

Our hosts said it was better from a bike, so, upon arrival I spun about half way down and back up to ease my fears. It proved there is nothing in southern England or the UK that can prepare you for the Alps. I now understand why all the Pros live in southern Europe! To get a feel for the area, we cycled on the balcony road that runs around the cliff about 3000ft above the valley. The whole place was buzzing, Nine thousand serious cyclists from all over the world descending on one small alpine village. The atmosphere was electric. After a tense and sleepless night and an early breakfast, we made our way to the start in the valley below Alp D’Huez.

Read full article on pages 32/33.