HEARTLESS thieves have stolen a defibrillator from a Gwent village, robbing the community of life-saving equipment.

On June 10, it was discovered that a public access defibrillator which was located on a village green had been stolen from Llanvaches near Newport.

The discovery was made by Peter Richards, from Welsh Ambulance Service, who said: “The whole point of the public access defibrillator is to provide a chance of survival for members of the public who suffer a cardiac arrest. Early access to a defibrillator may mean the difference between life or death for a member of your family, a friend, neighbour, colleague or visitor. The person who has stolen this machine is potentially risking the lives of their own family, friends and community. You may lose a loved one because of the deliberate actions of a thief.” The Llanvaches defibrillator is part of a Church in Wales project, supported by the Welsh Ambulance Service and British Heart Foundation, to install defibrillators either on church buildings or nearby to support communities.

Alex Glanville, head of property services for the Church In Wales said: “The theft of this defibrillator is very shocking.”

It is the sixth public access defibrillator known to have been stolen in Wales since the inception of the Public Access Defibrillator schemes (PADS) ten years ago. During that time, two defibrillators have been stolen from Newport railway station and have never been found.

Contact the Welsh Ambulance Service on 01633 626262 or Gwent Police 101 with information, quoting log number: 402 – 10/06/14.