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Stortford personal trainer raises funds for a public defibrillator



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Paragon Fitness, Southmill Road, Bishops Stortford. Robbie Lindsell ran the Great North Run carrying a pack weighing 60lb to raise funds for a defibrillator. Pic: Vikki Lince
Paragon Fitness, Southmill Road, Bishops Stortford. Robbie Lindsell ran the Great North Run carrying a pack weighing 60lb to raise funds for a defibrillator. Pic: Vikki Lince

The owner of a gym in Bishop's Stortford is raising money for a publicly accessible defibrillator.

Paragon Fitness, Southmill Road, Bishops Stortford. Robbie Lindsell ran the Great North Run carrying a pack weighing 60lb to raise funds for a defibrillator. Pic: Vikki Lince
Paragon Fitness, Southmill Road, Bishops Stortford. Robbie Lindsell ran the Great North Run carrying a pack weighing 60lb to raise funds for a defibrillator. Pic: Vikki Lince

The owner of a gym in Bishop’s Stortford is raising money for a publicly accessible defibrillator.

Robbie Linsell, 38, a personal trainer for 13 years, runs Paragon Fitness Studio on Southmill Road. He opened it in January 2013.

He is hoping that the £1,700 life-saving piece of medical equipment can be installed outside his business.

His desire to fundraise for a defibrillator was ignited when he took part in a first aid course. “I was informed about the stats of what difference to survival rates they make and was amazed,” he said.

Paragon Fitness, Southmill Road, Bishops Stortford. Robbie Lindsell ran the Great North Run carrying a pack weighing 60lb to raise funds for a defibrillator. Pic: Vikki Lince
Paragon Fitness, Southmill Road, Bishops Stortford. Robbie Lindsell ran the Great North Run carrying a pack weighing 60lb to raise funds for a defibrillator. Pic: Vikki Lince

He considered buying a defibrillator for his gym, but although this would have cost less, there were drawbacks. “If someone had a heart attack nearby and we weren’t open, or if they didn’t know it was there, it would be such a waste,” he said. “So, I want to get the public access one and put it outside so it will be available to all.”

In September, Robbie took part in the Great North Run while carrying a 27kg bag on his back. “I started a 180-day weight loss programme at the start of the year and said whoever lost the most weight I would carry it for the run. One of my clients lost 60lb – over 4st!”

Robbie completed the 13.1-mile half-marathon – plus a few extra miles. He had to queue for two miles before he got to the start, at the finish he had to walk two miles to get to his bus, then after he got off at the wrong stop he had another two miles to endure until he finally reached his hotel.

He said: “I will do more events as needed, but I hope to be able to get more donations sooner rather than later if I can to get it up and ready.”

Paragon Fitness, Southmill Road, Bishops Stortford. Robbie Lindsell ran the Great North Run carrying a pack weighing 60lb to raise funds for a defibrillator. Pic: Vikki Lince
Paragon Fitness, Southmill Road, Bishops Stortford. Robbie Lindsell ran the Great North Run carrying a pack weighing 60lb to raise funds for a defibrillator. Pic: Vikki Lince

Robbie’s defib project is not the first time he has strived to make a positive impact in the community: for the past three years he has been helping homeless people.

“I’ve been sleeping rough in different places in Stortford to get shoebox gifts for people that are affected by homelessness in local areas,” he said. “Each year the responses have got bigger and bigger, and I’m finding new places to distribute them. I’ll be doing it again this year, but focusing on the defibrillator fund first.”

So far, Robbie has raised £580 for the defib. If you would like to contribute, visit his online donation page at gofundme.com/public-access-defibrillator-fund.



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