YOUNG volunteers at St John Ambulance at the Chester-le-Street Cadet Unit will be able to learn how to use a lifesaving defibrillator, thanks to a donation from the Durham Mark Master Masons. who are celebrating their centenary year

The Moseley Mark Master Masons No 925, who nominated the unit presented a cheque for £1,000, at the Birtley Masonic Hall, for new training equipment which will be used by St John cadets.

The new training defibrillator will give the youngsters hands-on experience of how to treat someone in cardiac arrest and deliver a lifesaving shock to their heart.

And the hi-tech kit will also be used to teach members of the public first aid at demonstrations in the local community, such as the Restart a Heart events in October.

The cadets’ volunteer unit manager, Yvonne Elderbrant, said: “We’re extremely grateful for the Mark Master Masons’ support.and equally proud of the engagement that they are showing in using new skills.

“The new training equipment will help our young volunteers become familiar and confident with how to use a defibrillator, which can be the difference between life and death when someone is in cardiac arrest.”

St John Ambulance’s cadet units give young people aged 10 to 17 the chance to make new friends, enjoy fresh experiences, become confident first aiders and develop an understanding of the value of community volunteering.

WBro David Nigel Hanson, Deputy Provincial Grand Master at the Mark Master Masons’ Durham Province, said: “Its wonderful that so many young people are learning these vital life saving skills ”

For more information on St John Ambulance, including how to make a donation, volunteering opportunities, and details of training for the public, schools and businesses visit