OUT IN THE FIELD: Just relax ... it could save your life

The demolition in Terminus Road is almost complete and the steel structure is next on the agenda
The demolition in Terminus Road is almost complete and the steel structure is next on the agenda

In my humble opinion, and having been born and bred in Eastbourne, absolutely everyone living near the coast should be aware of the power of the sea and taught to swim from an early age.

We are lucky enough to have the water on our doorstep and most people know the dangers.

But every day is a school day and I was interested in one of the angles of the new Respect the Water campaign by the Royal National Lifeboat Institute which includes Eastbourne’s lifeboat and its crew of volunteers.

The campaign urges people that fall into cold water to fight their instincts and not splash around. Instead, says the RNLI, should you be unlucky enough to find yourself in the drink, relax, don’t panic and float on your back, keeping your airway clear, for around 60–90 seconds.

This will allow the effects of cold water shock to pass so you can regain control of your breathing and then swim to safety or call for help. It may sound like obvious common sense advice but is worth remembering if you come a cropper and could help save your life, or someone else’s.

Demolition of part of Terminus Road and a couple of units within the Arndale Centre is almost complete and the former Next store and others are now no more. In the coming weeks we can look forward to the steel structure going in and the new extension of new stores, restaurants and a multi-screen cinema finally becoming a reality. All we need now is a new name for it.

Sad news that this year’s Shinewater event on Saturday, September 2, has had to be cancelled due to illness and a shortage of volunteers. The event has been running for 14 years but fear not, organiser Jim Murray says there is a masterplan for 2018 and it will be back bigger and better. As with all of these things, it needs a team of volunteers. If you can help, contact Jim on Facebook and support him with this exciting community event.

The fellow mother of a teenager has contacted me this week urging young people to be on their guard when it comes to going out on the town. Last weekend two teenagers reported having their drinks spiked and one ended up in the DGH.

It’s all too easy when you’re out on the razzle to put your drink down and turn away. But remember there are less than scrupulous folk out there who either think it’s funny to spike somebody or have some ulterior motive for doing it.

As my mother used to say to me, “Mind nobody puts a Mickey Finn in your drink.” And for anyone under the age of 30 who has no idea what I am talking about, in slang, a Mickey Finn is a drink laced with a psychoactive drug or incapacitating agent given to someone without their knowledge, with intent to incapacitate them. Be warned.

Finally this week a heartwarming story. Mrs E. Britt, 95, would like to thank the gentleman who helped her at Waitrose in Eastbourne on July 28 when she discovered her purse had been stolen when she went to pay for her shopping. A gentleman in the queue handed her a £5 note and went on to pay for her shopping. If you’re that hero call 414482.