Midlands MP Aaron Bell has backed a campaign by local company Hartshorne Group to install heart defibrillators within the community.
Staff and customers at the company - which supplies and services Volvo commercial vehicles - have so far raised enough funds to donate five of the life-saving medical devices to schools within the region.
The MP for Newcastle-under-Lyme paid tribute to the fundraising effort during a visit to the company's Potteries depot on the town's Parkhouse Industrial Estate. Hartshorne donates £1 towards its Healthy Heart Campaign for every hour of physical exercise that staff record via an app.
Mr Bell said: "I'd like to congratulate everybody at Hartshorne Group for the positive impact they've made on the community. Their enthusiasm and funding has enabled the installation of a number of vital defibrillators in schools, which is a wonderful achievement. The more that can be done to boost the availability of defibrillators the better."
Mr Bell was given a tour of the depot, which included viewing a new demonstrator truck decorated in Healthy Heart livery. Among the schools to benefit by receiving a defibrillator from Hartshorne Group recently is the Priory C of E School in Trentham.
Defibrillators are battery-powered devices that come with voice instructions so that they can be used by anybody to restart a person's heart in an emergency.
Hartshorne staff across the company's nine depots in the region have so far clocked up an amazing 26,000 miles by running, cycling or walking, during over 5,400 hours of physical exercise. The impressive tally is an equivalent distance to travelling all around the circumference of the world.
Hartshorne Managing Director Ian Middleton said: "We're very grateful to Mr Bell for his support in helping to highlight our campaign. I'd also like to thank all our staff and customers for their amazing fundraising efforts."
Hartshorne Group launched the Healthy Heart Campaign last year in conjunction with West Midlands Ambulance Service. Around 30,000 people a year suffer a heart attack in the UK that occurs somewhere other than a hospital. Hartshorne staff and family members who go above and beyond in their fundraising efforts are presented with a Healthy Heart Champion Award.
Pic - Mr Bell (in cab of truck holding a Healthy Heart Champion Award) with Ian Middleton (right) and Phil Brookfield (left).
Note: In addition the Potteries site, Hartshorne Group also has major depots in Alfreton, Birmingham, Burton, Nottingham, Shrewsbury, and Walsall.