Pupils at Bonhill Primary proved they were all heart by raising money for a lifesaving machine to be installed outside their school.

The children raised £1,000 at a PE-style fundraiser after hearing how a defibrillator could be vital in saving someone suffering cardiac arrest.

The machine, which can provide an electrical shock to return the heart to a normal rhythm, was presented to the school on Friday by Sheenah Nelson, Heartstart co-ordinator, Helensburgh Garelochside Rotary and Chairman of Helensburgh & Local District CPR/Defibrillator Association.

Keepmoat Homes donated a further £500 to provide the full cost of the machine, plus its cabinet, which will be located outside the school's perimeter fence.

Head teacher Maria Seery told the Reporter: "It's important the defibrillator is outside for the public to use in case of an emergency.

"The £400 required for the cabinet is much cheaper than paying for the funeral of a heart attack victim."

The school has undertaken a full programme of paediatric first aid training for teachers and classroom assistants, with 21 out of the 22 staff having now been trained by Kirsty McElroy from West Dunbartonshire Leisure. Kirsty has also held parent and child first aid classes in the school.

Mrs Seery said: "I wanted the school staff to be trained to deal with any emergency that may arise."

Installation of this latest machine comes amid a major drive to provide defibrillators and Heartstart training throughout West Dunbartonshire, with a range of organisations being involved.

Bonhill Primary is now one of nine schools in the area to have them.

Mrs Nelson told pupils at the presentation on Friday: "You are all life savers in making this possible. Please remember to thank your parents and friends who all helped to make this possible."

Cllr Marie McNair, Convener of West Dunbartonshire Health and Social Care Partnership, said she was delighted to see another life-saving defibrillator donated to a school.

She added: "It is important to build up an accurate register of where the defibrillators are held in West Dunbartonshire.

"I am also keen to see these in all our schools and a training programme rolled out to our teaching staff and pupils so in the event of an emergency they have the confidence, skill and training to save a life.”

The council recently launch a public awareness campaign on the importance of dialling 999, beginning CPR and getting a defibrillator to the casualty.

Mrs Nelson said: "All defibrillators are now registered by Scottish Ambulance Service so that in the event of a cardiac arrest they can direct a member of the public to their nearest machine.

"All of the machines that our charity help to locate in the community are registered, mapped on a defibrillator location App - www.trossachsdefibrillator.co.uk - and have a guardian who will carry out a month check on each machine."