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Learn how to ‘Restart a Heart’ in the South West

The South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SWASFT) is inviting people across the South West to join them for Restart a Heart Day this weekend.

Members of SWASFT will be in Truro on Saturday and in Barnstaple, Exeter, Gloucester, Plymouth and Poole on Sunday, offering free CPR and defibrillator awareness training to members of the public:

  • Farmers Market, Lemon Quay, Truro, 9am-4pm, Saturday 15 October

  • Green Lanes Shopping Centre, Barnstaple, 10.30am-2pm, Sunday 16 October
  • Princesshay Shopping Centre, Exeter, 10am-4pm, Sunday 16 October
  • Gloucester Quays Shopping Centre, Gloucester, 10am-4pm, Sunday 16 October
  • Frankfort Gate, Plymouth, 10am-4pm, Sunday 16 October
  • Dolphin Shopping Centre, Poole, 10am-4pm, Sunday 16 October


The ambulance service is joining thousands of other healthcare workers from across the country to help improve public awareness of cardiac arrests and increase the number of people who are trained to act in a medical emergency.

Ollie Zorab, Clinical Lead for Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest at SWASFT says: “This Restart a Heart Day, we want to empower people to know what to do, should the worst happen.

“I often hear people say they would be worried about hurting somebody when performing CPR or using a defibrillator. In reality, when someone has a sudden, unexpected cardiac arrest, doing nothing is the only way of making their situation worse.”

At the free event, members of the public can learn about cardiac arrests, find out what a defibrillator does and learn how to deliver life-saving CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation).

Members of SWASFT, including paramedics, community first responders and responding officers, will be on hand to answer any questions and show people how to do CPR on mannikins and how to use a defibrillator. Certificates will be given to everyone who completes the 15-minute training.

Restart A Heart follows on from this summer’s Saving Lives Together/Plan Ahead campaign, which aimed to improve the confidence of bystanders to act in the event of a medical emergency, such as an out of hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA), to give patients the best possible chance. The campaign is underpinned by clinical data from the Trust: 

  • In the last six years, we have responded to and provided a resuscitation attempt for over 21,000 patients following a cardiac arrest

  • 75% of these patients experienced a cardiac arrest at a private location such as a home or holiday address

  • Over the past six years, 65% of patients who experienced an OHCA received bystander CPR before the arrival of the first ambulance response

Saving Lives Together urges people to know where they are (using the What 3 Words app), find out where their nearest defibrillator is, and to learn how to deliver CPR. There is more information at Welcome to SWASFT - (

Each year for Restart A Heart Day, an alliance of partners from all over the world, including UK ambulance services, universities, and other charitable and public sector community-based organisations and first aid training organisations, come together to increase public awareness of cardiac arrests and increase the number of people trained in lifesaving CPR.

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South Western Ambulance Charity

The South Western Ambulance Charity, founded in 1995, uses gifted monies to benefit those in our communities who use our service and to improve the welfare of the staff and volunteers of the South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust. 

Our charitable support covers Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Wiltshire including Bristol and Swindon.

If you would like to show your appreciation for the care that you or your loved one has received from us in the form of a charitable donation please visit our online giving website: Donate to South Western Ambulance Charity | Give as you Live Donate