A TENNIS club has put a new defibrillator at a park to replace one that was stolen years ago.

Hove Park Tennis Alliance, an amateur tennis club, installed the life-saving equipment earlier this month.

It comes after the last one in the park, which was underneath the veranda of the cafe, was broken into and stolen in 2018.

The tennis club bought the £1,400 defibrillator for “reassurance” for those playing tennis, as well as people using the park.

The Argus: Some of the members enjoying a matchSome of the members enjoying a match

Neil Dickson, chairman for the club, said: “We took over the courts a few years ago when the council asked local groups if they wanted to take the courts on themselves due to funding cuts. Having done that, we have gone from strength to strength.

“We have coaches down there, we have resurfaced it because we care passionately about the facilities down at Hove. We’re due to put an all-weather court down there later this year.

“We also wanted to take the idea of safety on board as well. A group of us did some health and safety courses which included resuscitation.

The Argus: Neil Dickson holding his dog and Cllr Brown, right side, with tennis players at the clubNeil Dickson holding his dog and Cllr Brown, right side, with tennis players at the club

“They said being able to do resuscitation is great, but a defibrillator really saves lives.

"Having the resources to do so, we thought it would be great to replace what is there to improve safety for our members and people in the park as well. We were able to fund it and happy to do so.

“The stats for when you have a defibrillator on site show a much higher chance of someone surviving if the worst does happen. It’s a nice reassurance.”

The Argus: The vandalised empty case at the cafeThe vandalised empty case at the cafe

The old case has been collecting rubbish since it was vandalised. Vanessa Brown, Conservative councillor for Hove Park, said she is “relieved” to have new equipment in the park.

Cllr Brown said: “I’m very grateful to the club, we have worked together but thanks to Neil who has done this.

“It’s good to have a defibrillator in Hove Park, I want to get one in Hove Rec as well now too.”