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St John Ambulance is setting up a new training venue in Chippenham after a surge in the number of people who want to learn how to save lives.
The facility at Riverside Centre, Bath Road, is being opened in response to the demand from businesses wanting workplace training.
It replaces a previous facility in the High Street.
Campaign marketing manager Kim Coulson said St John Ambulance was responding to huge interest.
Between 2009 and 2011, the training division of the charity saw a 25 per cent increase in demand for its workplace courses in Wiltshire.
She said: “There are lots of reasons why we’re seeing this huge rise.
“St John Ambulance has been in the public eye a lot more lately with big advertising campaigns, and people are really looking to get involved and learn first aid.
“We have a number of courses, including pediatrics first aid, which would be for nursery staff and baby sitters, or anyone who is responsible for children.
“We also have the popular essential first aid course. We get new mums coming on to this to find out how they would take care of their child if something happened.
“These facilities will allow us to accommodate a lot more people – there’s better access and parking, and it’s a lot bigger, so we’ll be able to take on 48 people a day.”
The new base will offer a range of courses to help businesses meet legal requirements, including first aid at work, emergency first aid at work, annual refresher and fire marshal training.
The first training course will be on October 1.
John Cavanagh, regional director of St John Ambul-ance’s commercial training division in the South West, said the charity has training facilities in Salisbury, Devizes and Swindon, but it knew there was scope for better facilities in Chippenham.
He said: “Chippenham is home to a wide variety of businesses which need first aid and health and safety training and its situation in the county makes it an ideal location.
“We hope it will encourage more employers to help their staff learn the skills that can be the difference between a life lost and a life saved.”
To mark the opening, St John Ambulance is offering £50 off its First Aid at Work course and £20 off its Emergency First Aid at Work course, provided they take place before the end of year.
Call St John Ambulance on 0844 324 5535 or book online at www.sja.org.uk/training, quoting HOTSPOT 2012.