A COMMUNITY-FUNDED defibrillator has been installed at a Newport football club.

Newport Saints took ownership of the life-saving machinery on Tuesday, after support from the surrounding community helped them hit their fundraising target in two days.

After Danish footballer Christian Eriksen collapsed during Euro 2020, the harrowing scenes brought home the need of a defibrillator to coaches at the Saints.

The club, which plays their games at Black Ask Park, began fundraising soon after, and within two days, they had hit their target.

Coach, Gerald Clarke explained: "When we saw what happened to Eriksen, knowing it could happen so easily on a football pitch, it put us into a bit of panic mode.

"We put out a call on social media to say we are looking to get a defibrillator and people put us in touch with June Thomas.

"Her story is incredibly moving around her son Jack, and she has been amazing."

Jack died suddenly on February 12, 2012.

Since 2014 his mum, June, has successfully campaigned to get defibrillators into every secondary school in Gwent, as well as a number of other areas across society.

The family are continuing to push for Jack's Law, which would see defibrillators available in every public place in Wales.


Mr Clarke added: "After the fundraising through GoFundMe, we achieved our target and a little bit more.

"We are trying to raise enough now to get a second defibrillator and donate it to another club.

"Because of what happened in the Euros, and the global viewing it had, it really spurred people on and we hit our target in two days.

"We were absolutely blown away, not just with the support from the players and their families, but the wider community as well.

"The support has been absolutely phenomenal. It is not just about the football club, it is about everyone."

Newport Saints has youth teams between the age of six and 11, as well as having three senior sides.