PUPILS at a Wallingford primary school were shown how a life-saving defibrillator installed on the premises would work.

Earlier this month, pupils at Fir Tree Junior School in Radnor Road helped to officially welcome the installation of the device, which is accessible to passers-by as it has been installed on the front of the school building.

It is now one of a network of five around the town, with another in place outside The Old Post Office in St Martin's Street, two more at Wallingford School in St George's Road, and the fifth at Hithercroft Sports Park in Hithercroft Road.

Each defibrillator costs between £1,500 and £1,800 and has been installed with the backing of fundraising appeals in the town.

Wallingford county councillor Lynda Atkins, who attended the launch, said: "This is one of a series of defibrillators being placed around the town, as money continues to come in from local people.

"This one will be accessible from a wide area around the north west of the town and we are keen to let people know that it is there if they need it.

"The next one we hope to install will be at Winterbrook Care Home, and as we develop a network around the town we hope that everyone will soon be within a short run of one of the machines if it is needed."

The defibrillators in Wallingford are part of a larger network across Oxfordshire.

By March last year more than 500 defibrillators had been established across the county following a campaign led by South Central Ambulance Service divisional commander Dick Tracey, who attended the launch at the school, showed pupils the defibrillator and told them how it worked.

Funds for the school's machine were raised by, among others, members of the Wallingford Rainbows group, which meet at the school.

The latest additions to the town's defibrillator network came following a public appeal for cash which raised £6,000.

Hairdresser Susan Handy began campaigning for defibrillators in 2013 and raised £2,200, with the town's first defibrillator installed in St Martin’s Street in 2015.

She was with fellow campaigners at Wallingford Sports Park last month to unveil one of the devices, which deliver an electric current to the heart of a patient who has suffered a cardiac arrest.

Fir Tree Junior School headteacher Nilofer Khan said: "Dick showed pupils from the school council how the defibrillator worked - it's great that it's here for the community to use."

Defibrillators are placed in secure boxes which people can open by using a code given by 999 operators.