Beadnell WI, November meeting

Beadnell bay
Beadnell bay

First aid in focus

On an evening of heavy rainfall, Beadnell WI president Pat Brand was pleased to greet so many members.

We were also glad that our guest speaker, first responder Martin Spruce, made it to the meeting. No doubt his 21 years’ experience of travelling to, and working in, difficult situations stood him in good stead. His topic ‘The Use of Defribillators’ was powerful enough to distract us from the noise of the elements.

Martin challenged us to display any knowledge we possessed about how to respond to someone who appeared to be having a stroke or heart attack, from knowing how to summon professional help, to administering potential life-saving first aid in the first vital minutes. We had to admit to our qualifications being mainly out of date. He demonstrated how to use a defibrillator and administer CPR.

Since Beadnell does not yet possess such equipment, thought was given as to where one could be sited should funding become available. He felt that outside the WI Hall would be an accessible spot, in a central part of the village. Others also suggested a location close to the beach.

We were disquieted to hear of the reduction in numbers of first responders, especially since we have lost the help from RAF Boulmer, and other emergency services are often difficult to access in rural areas. Members decided to consider facilitating a training session to encourage more people to acquire self-help skills. Martin feels that seems to be a more popular approach abroad than in Britain.

We also felt the necessity to urge far greater publicity of how to summon emergency help via a mobile telephone. Hardly any of us knew about dialling 112 in a zone where we have no signal.

Angela Peereboom thanked Martin for a thought-provoking presentation.

The competition for a travel first aid kit was won by Angela, with Pat and Annette in second and third places. Catherine won the raffle.

In October and November, meals had been enjoyed. Afternoon tea at Doxford Hall, a meal with guests at The Links Hotel in Seahouses, and lunch at Sambuca’s in Embleton were all highly spoken of. Numbers were taken for a pre-Christmas lunch at The Craster Arms and a new year one in The Beadnell Towers Hotel.

Following our monthly meeting, members returned to the hall the next day to host our pre-Christmas shopping evening. A warm atmosphere, festive refreshments and twinkling tinsel provided a perfect background to a lovely array of Christmas stalls offering interesting choices of presents.

Organised very well by Jan Brunt and Catherine Willis, and supported by most of our members, the evening was friendly and successful, adding funds to our rebuilding account.

Very many thanks to everyone involved.