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The first coastal rowing club in the country to receive the gift of a defibrillator from the charity RALPHH is Lower Thames Rowing Club, based at Two Trees Island, Leigh-on-Sea, Essex.

The presentation was made on a cold April morning on the bank of the Thames Estuary and attended by club members. Lower Thames has 60 members, whose ages range up to 85. They compete in a variety of events that include the Thames Great River Race that runs from Greenwich to Richmond. They also travel around the Essex and Kent coastlines in competitions and are on the water every month of the year. 

Making the presentation was Jane Allen from RALPHH (Robert Allen Life Promotion and Healthy Hearts Trust) to Anne Gunn (second left) who is the Co-Chairman of the club. She was joined by members Linda Newart and in the boat are Brendan Bennett and Raj Patel - one of the newest club members.

“We are very pleased to have extended our help to a different form of rowing,” said Jane Allen. “It was wonderful to meet the members and have an appreciation of their enthusiasm. I do hope that many more rowing clubs follow this example and contact the charity, as we have a stock of defibrillators that we would be pleased to donate to clubs who lack this safety precaution.”

In a letter to rowing clubs across the country, British Rowing has made it clear that they strongly advise that clubs have their own defibrillation equipment, as any delay in having access to this could have very detrimental health consequences. The recommendation also extends to the point that clubs should welcome working with RALPHH as a very supportive partner.


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