Bolton's first public access defibrillator installed in Little Lever

Claire Axon, left, with Tracey Wilkinson, fundraising manager of Bolton ICD Support Group

Neil Axon

First published in News The Bolton News: Photograph of the Author by , education reporter

THE first public access life-saving defibrillator has been installed in Little Lever in memory of a loving husband and father who died suddenly on Christmas Day, 2012.

The village defibrillator has been placed on the wall of St Matthew’s Church House in memory of father-of-five Neil Axon, who died in 2012 at the age of 39.

It is believed he had familial hypercholesterol-aemia, which can cause high blood cholesterol, and could have led to him developing a coronary thrombosis.

Since his death his widow, Claire has been raising awareness of heart conditions and campaigning for the age of routine cholesterol testing to be lowered.

As part of that, she was determined that a defibrillator would be made easily accessible to the people of Little Lever in case of emergencies.

A special event was held to mark the installation of the defibrillator — thought to be the first public access one in the borough.

Mrs Axon said: “I would like to thank everyone for coming, not just today, but also to the fun day in August last year at the Queens Hotel in Bradley Fold, where collectively, you all helped to raise the money needed to provide this, the very first public defibrillator in the area.

“It will benefit this community but also raise awareness to this important life-saving piece of equipment which is very close to my heart. I would like to say a huge thank you to Tracey Wilkinson from ICD support group in making today happen I could not have done it without her.

“To have Neil’s name along side this defibrillator makes me proud of what we have achieved so far and I hope we can continue to make a difference.”

Bolton ICD Support Group said that it was their 13th defibrillator donated but its first public access one.

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