Sileby FC become heartsafe

New defibrillator from JHMT will help Sileby Town FC to become heartsafe

ONE of Leicestershire’s longest-serving community football clubs is well on the way to becoming ‘heartsafe’ thanks to support from local councillors and the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust (JHMT).

Sileby Town Football Club has recently gained a new public-access defibrillator to help assist if anyone has a cardiac emergency. The defib is situated on the outside wall of the football club, on Southfields Avenue, and is accessible to the public 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Funding for the defib came from a members’ grant from Sileby’s two local borough councillors, plus a facilities grant from Charnwood Borough Council. Costs to rig up the defib were sorted by the club, and local heart charity the JHMT has provided the external cabinet that the defib is in.

Charlie Hoyes from Sileby Town said: “We plan to have training from the JHMT, including training for some residents who live very close to the site. Our members are very pleased that we now have a defibrillator and recognise the importance it could play in saving a life. The JHMT have been marvellous with their help and advice.

“We also hope the club’s steps to create a heartsafe environment will encourage other league clubs to do the same.”

Dr Mike Ferguson from JHMT said: “Any delay in starting CPR and finding a defibrillator can result in either the death or severe health impairment of someone who has collapsed. Attaching an automated external defibrillator (AED) to them gives vital information to anyone attempting to help. It is essential, where possible, that these simple-to-use AEDs are available to everyone 24 hours a day.”

Cllr Deborah Taylor, lead member for communities said: “I’m very pleased we’ve been able to support Sileby FC with the purchase and installation of a defibrillator through our grants scheme.

“Not only will the defibrillator help the football club become heartsafe aware, but it will also be accessible for the local community.

“I’d encourage other local sports clubs to look into the grants that are available to help them with funding a defibrillator.”

Sileby Town Football Club was formed in 1952, making it one of the longest-serving teams in the Leicestershire senior league. The club has around 150 members, which includes two teams. “As a club, we believe in inclusivity and try to join in with other organisations in the village,” says Charlie. “We have held fund-raising events for charities including SANDS Utd, the MND society, Diabetes UK and Leicester Transplant Sport. We also try to help the local Scouts and Guides where we can, as well as Sileby Juniors football club.”

As well as providing free CPR and defibrillator training, the JHMT works hard to raise awareness of sudden heart deaths, helps to provide community defibrillators and runs Inspire, a local grants scheme for inspirational young people.

The charity was set up after the tragic death of Rothley teenager Joe Humphries in 2012, who died from sudden arrhythmic death syndrome (SADS) while out on a run.

To find out more about JHMT’s ongoing work to create a heart safe sporting and community environment across the city and county go to

For more information about the Charnwood sports grants please visit



Picture shows l-r: Alan Harrison White, Trustee of JHMT; Charlie Hoyes - Sileby Town FC committee member, Graham Clark - president of Sileby FC, Cllr Paul Murphy, Dr Mike Ferguson - Trustee of Joe Humphries Memorial Trust, Cllr Deborah Taylor, lead member for communities, Sam Rowe - football coach, Cllr Andy Paling and Andrew Doodson - senior sports development officer at Charnwood Borough Council


SADS Facts of Life:

- 12 young people aged 12-35 in Britain die each week from SADS - undiagnosed heart problems.

- If CPR is started immediately, done effectively (by a trained person with the victim lying flat) and a defibrillator can be got to the victim within eight minutes, the majority of people could be saved, without brain damage.

- The majority of deaths related to the condition are the result of undiagnosed irregularities or abnormalities of the heartbeat, which are known as arrhythmias.

- The unstable rhythm – the arrhythmia – develops a rhythm called ventricular fibrillation, in which the ventricles, which are the main pumping chambers of the heart, start beating at rates in excess of 250 beats per minute. Ventricular fibrillation causes sudden collapse, seizure-like activity and cardiac arrest, resulting in the total loss of heart function – but if diagnosed quickly, and if a shock from a defibrillator is applied, normal heart rhythm and signs of life can be restored.

- Most SADS cases have a genetic origin, with cases tending to come to light in teenage years and the early 20s.

- SADS can also occur for the first time in a family.

- Screening is available – if a problem is detected it can be monitored and treated.

- Every minute lost without CPR reduces the survival rate by 10%.

- Only 7% of UK people have first aid skills, compared with 80% of people in Scandinavian countries.

- There are 30,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests in the UK each year and 27,000 do not survive the event (10% survival).

- To find out more about SADS and the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust, please visit