BARRHEAD businesses are being asked to step up and keep hearts pumping by sponsoring the area’s new defibrillators.

And leading the way is the Barrhead News, which was the first supporter to sign up to ensure the maintenance of public access defibrillators (PADs) set up by the Levern Valley Defibrillator Community Partnership.

Douglas Yates, the charity’s chairman, said it has been a huge financial challenge to raise the money needed to buy and install the life-saving machines.

Now the partnership is running its ‘Adopt a Defib’ campaign to help cover the ongoing costs for the PADs.

And it is hoped that, even at this difficult time, more supporters will show true community spirit by offering to back the worthy cause.

Douglas said: “We really appreciate the financial donations and support-in-kind we have had and continue to have.

“I can assure the people of Barrhead and district that every pound donated has been, and will continue to be, spent wisely and accounted for in support of the aims of the charity.”

Tristan Stewart-Robertson, acting chief reporter at the Barrhead News, joined Douglas to show support for the initiative.

He said: “The Barrhead News is proud to have been the first business to adopt a defibrillator.

“This is a vital campaign to save lives throughout the community and we hope many other businesses and organisations will join in.”

Local company Aromabar and community organisation Auchenback Active have also committed to support the appeal.

The cost of adopting a defibrillator is £200 for a year, with an estimated £3,500 needed annually to maintain the current network of PADs.

Treasurer of the charity, Chris Hughes, said: “While we will continue to finance additional defibrillators and training equipment through fundraising, we appeal to the generosity of local businesses and organisations to pay the ongoing maintenance costs.

“For example, perhaps an organisation such as a Boys’ Brigade or a Women’s Guild or a school could organise a fundraiser at some time in the future and donate the proceeds to the charity?”

Douglas added: “If these defibrillators can save even one life, then the costs will have been justified.

“Many lives in Scotland each week are lost to sudden cardiac arrest and several of those might have been saved if a defibrillator could have been readily available and used on the person involved, and CPR applied, soon after their collapse.”

If you would like to support the appeal, send an email to