New extensive network of defibrillators will save lives, says Southwark council

Southwark council says it has delivered on its promise to install defibrillators in all 12 libraries and eight leisure centres across the borough.

All schools have also been offered an automated external defibrillator (AED), with 75 out of 90 schools having at least one installed so far.

These devices are crucial in cases of sudden cardiac arrest, potentially saving lives in critical situations. With more than 30,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests occurring across the UK annually and survival rates at less than one in 10, access to these lifesaving devices can significantly improve emergency outcomes.

The defibrillators, which provide clear step-by-step voice instructions, can be used without prior training. They check a person’s heart rhythm and administer a shock only if need.

Users cannot accidentally shock themselves or others. In an emergency, the first step is to call 999, and an operator will provide guidance on using the defibrillator.

Defibrillators are already available at various locations across Southwark, including local schools, local underground and railway stations, large offices and commercial buildings, sports clubs and leisure centres.

Leader of Southwark council, Councillor Kieron Williams, said: “We are delighted to have fulfilled our commitment to install defibrillators across public spaces in Southwark.

“We have defibrillators in many of our schools, across our train stations, on our streets, and now in all 12 of our Libraries. Seven of our Library defibrillators are also available 24 hours a day”.

Councillor Evelyn Akoto, cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said:Our defibrillators are designed to be used by anybody. We are proud to have reached this milestone with our rollout to help improve the chances of survival from cardiac arrest across our borough”.

For more information on where to find your nearest device, visit

Pictured top: Cllr Evelyn Akoto and Cllr Kieron Williams (Picture: Southwark council)

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