Monday, 12 March 2018

Air Ambulance banks on NatWest fundraising

Photo: NatWest's Area Managers pictured at the Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance base in Marden

NatWest branches right across the South East Region have chosen Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance as their 2018 chosen charity. A total of 99 branches will be taking part in fundraising throughout the year.

Ten of NatWest's Area Managers recently held their monthly regional board meeting at the charity's base in Marden. They were given a tour of the helicopter and this unique experience gave them an insight into just how vital the service is, as the crew were called out to three people in need during their stay.

Kevin Guy, Regional Director at NatWest, said: "We're delighted and very proud to be partnering and supporting this charity during 2018. It's an amazing charity and all of our branch teams are really keen to show their support and make a difference to further help the communities we also serve."

Two members of staff at the Horsham branch will be running the Brighton Marathon next month while a team of 10 from the Orpington branch will be taking on the Three Peaks Challenge in June.

Julie Clare, Head of Corporate Relations at Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance, said: "As an independent charity, we rely on fundraising and donations so every penny is truly valued. Our doctor and paramedic teams can deliver all the skills and equipment of an A&E department to critically ill and injured patients – wherever and whenever it is needed. None of us ever know when we might need to depend on this vital service which is why we are delighted to have been elected as NatWest's chosen charity."

Please visit for more information about the charity.


Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Hall & Woodhouse announces two-year charity partnership with local air ambulance charities

Photo: Hall & Woodhouse staff and air ambulance crew celebrate their partnership to raise funds for eight local air ambulance charities

Leading independent brewer, Hall & Woodhouse, is delighted to announce it has chosen eight local air ambulance charities as its charity partner for the next two years.

Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance, Devon Air Ambulance, Dorset & Somerset Air Ambulance, Great Western Air Ambulance, Hampshire & Isle of Wight Air Ambulance, London's Air Ambulance, Thames Valley Air Ambulance and Wiltshire Air Ambulance are all set to be equal beneficiaries of the fundraising partnership.

Fifty-one Hall & Woodhouse public houses are taking part in supporting the life-saving charities, with an aim of raising in the region of £250,000 over the two year period. This will be achieved through a number of fundraising activities organised by each of the local public houses, such as quiz nights, sponsored events, fun days and sports tournaments. All monies raised will be equally split between each charity, enabling them to fund the cost of missions, further enhance their operations or purchase new items of specialist equipment.

Lucinda Gray, sixth generation of the Woodhouse family and Charity Champion at Hall & Woodhouse, said: "As a company that places the community at the heart of our business, supporting worthy causes is very important to Hall & Woodhouse. These local air ambulance charities cover the counties where our public houses are located and each of them work tirelessly to care for critically ill or injured patients within our community. We are extremely proud to have so many of our public houses backing the partnership and supporting this wonderful cause.

"Having raised a phenomenal £248,000 for Macmillan in 2013/14, and then in excess of £210,000 for Together for Short Lives in 2016/17 (final number yet to be confirmed), I know our team and guests will do everything they can to exceed these totals over the next two years."

Julie Clare, Head of Corporate Relations at Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance, said: "We are delighted that the team at Hall & Woodhouse voted to support us. This is a new and exciting partnership that will allow us to reach out to so many people in the local community."

Fundraising for the air ambulance charities begun at the start of February 2018 and in March, some of the public houses will be taking part in "The World's Biggest Pub Quiz", an event being led by PubAid.

For more information about Hall & Woodhouse, go to

Friday, 17 November 2017

Surrey resident wins BMW in Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance's Win a Car Draw

Photo: BMW winner Timothy Kane, KSSAAT Deputy Director Bridget Pepper and Barnett Hill Hotel General Manager General Manager Tim Hall

Timothy Kane from Walton-on-Thames has won a BMW 1 Series in Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance's Win a Car Draw, which raised enough money to fund 86 potentially life-saving missions.

Mr Kane bought the winning ticket from the charity's Deputy Director, Bridget Pepper, while shopping at Waitrose in Haywards Heath last month.

He was treated to a champagne reception and lunch this week, courtesy of the four star Barnett Hill Hotel in Guildford where he met with representatives of the charity and chose the colour of his new car – mineral grey.

Mr Kane said: "When Bridget asked if I wanted to buy a £5 ticket, I wasn't sure whether to or not and I'm so glad I did now. It is an amazing service and I'm astounded that it's a charity. Prior to my interaction with them, I had no idea of the scale and complexity of their brilliant work, so I was delighted to hear how much money was raised through this draw.

"When I got the call to say I'd won this fantastic prize, my first reaction was disbelief! I feel very privileged to have won and I can't wait to pick up the keys."

Thousands of tickets were sold at more than 100 shopping centres, stores and events across Kent, Surrey and Sussex and Mr Kane was the top prize winner of the car worth £23,000. The draw took place on Thursday 2nd November at the charity's base in Marden and there was also a second prize of £1,000 and a third prize of a helicopter pleasure flight.

The campaign was again supported by Barretts of Canterbury, who very kindly provided the charity with a promotional car (pictured) to use during the six-month campaign.

Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance relies almost entirely on public support to raise the £6.5million a year it needs to respond to the most critically ill and injured patients in the region.

Each time the charity's crews are called out to a patient it costs about £2,500, so the outstanding sum of money raised from this year's Win a Car raffle is enough to fund 86 potentially life-saving missions.



Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Flying instructor thanks team who saved his life

Photo, L-R: Nurses Helen Cunningham and Molly Bartlett,  Phil James, paramedic Craig Prentice and nurse Andy Kyeremeh

A flying instructor has been reunited with the team of medics who saved his life after he suffered a cardiac arrest at the wheel of his car.

Phil James, a father and grandfather, was on his way to work at Redhill Aerodrome when he suddenly fell ill, veered across the road and collided with another car in South Nutfield.

East Surrey Hospital nurses Molly Bartlett and Andy Kyeremeh, who were also on their way to work, were first on scene and carried out CPR along with Helen Cunningham, a nurse who was also passing by.

The Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance crew then arrived on scene and their doctor, Jonathan Leung, and paramedic, Craig Prentice, helped to successfully resuscitate Phil at the roadside. Phil was then flown to the specialist coronary care unit at St George's Hospital in London in under eight minutes, where he spent 13 days and had an internal defibrillator fitted.

Phil has since made a good recovery and recently met the people who had worked together to save his life, at the air ambulance base at Redhill.

He said: "Before the accident, I remember driving very slowly and just not feeling right. After that, the next thing I remember was waking up in St George's Hospital. I'm so grateful to Helen, Molly and Andy for acting so quickly, and to Jonathan and Craig for their subsequent response and further treatment – I really do owe them my life."

Phil and Craig (Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance paramedic), already knew each other through their connection in flying light aircraft. Phil said: "I bumped into Craig just the day before. He was with his colleague, Dr Jonathan Leung and introduced us. I had a good chat with them and ended the conversation by saying that I hoped I never needed them. The very next day, I did need them."

Phil had no history of heart trouble prior to suffering a cardiac arrest. He is unable to drive or fly for six months but is expected to make a full recovery.

Craig said: "When someone has a cardiac arrest, it is very much a team effort within the chain of survival from the initial first aid, to the ambulance service arriving, to the onward treatment at hospital. It was great to see Phil back on his feet and looking well so soon."

Fiona Allsop, chief nurse at Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust, added: "I am so proud to know that the selfless actions of Molly and Andy made such a significant difference to Phil and I am delighted to learn that he is on the road to recovery."


Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Borstal Bowls Club raises enough funds to save 4 lives

Photo: Air ambulance volunteer Simon Hancock pictured with members of Borstal Bowls Club cheque presentation

Members of Borstal Bowls Club have raised enough funds to help the Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance save four lives.

Last month (15th July), they once again held their annual charity match in memory of a founding member.

They gathered at the Wouldham Road club again last weekend (5th August) to present £1,258.27 to the charity, taking their total funds raised to £11,852.90.

Each incident attended by the charity costs in the region of £2,500 so the substantial sum raised over the years is enough to fund 4 potentially life-saving missions.

John Platt, President and Chairman of Borstal Bowls Club, said: "The Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance is a life-saving charity we can't do without. It's an essential service and you never know when you may need it.

"It's a marvellous cause that we do this for because they make a real difference to the community. I'm so pleased that we have raised this amount, which is tremendous for a small club and deserves recognition."

Nick Turrell, Community Fundraising Manager at the charity, said "We are so grateful to Borstal Bowls Club for their continued outstanding efforts in raising funds for us. We couldn't continue our vital work without the wonderful support of local groups."

Borstal Bowls Club was founded in 1990 and the green was opened by the Mayoress of Rochester who bowled the first wood.


Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Millbrook Garden Centre complete 60-mile Charity Walk for air ambulance

Photo, L-R: The Millbrook Walkers: From left to right: Tracey Bowler, Liz Dowling, Tammy Woodhouse, Ben Woodhouse, Kerry Smith, Louise English, Christy Briley

Congratulations to the Millbrook Garden Company staff members who managed to walk between all three of their Garden Centres, from Millbrook Gravesend in Kent, to Millbrook Crowborough in East Sussex via their Staplehurst, Kent, centre this weekend.

The team made the epic 60-mile walk over 3 days - Friday 4th to Sunday 6th August with the aim of raising money for the company's chosen charity Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance.

Each journey made by the life-saving Air Ambulance costs £2,500 and they receive no Government funding, relying almost entirely on charitable donations and fundraising. Millbrook therefore set a fundraising target of £5,000 - enough for launching the Air Ambulance twice. The money is still coming in but so far the total is nearly £4,564 – a fantastic achievement - and the team are confident that those aching legs, blisters and sore feet will take them to their £5,000 target and possibly beyond!

Millbrook at Crowborough was the original Garden Centre in the Millbrook stable. Millbrook owners, Dick and Sue Allen, bought the Gravesend site in 1994 and realised it would be possible to walk between the sites using part of the Weald Way, but nobody had taken up the challenge until now.

The Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance Trust provides a Helicopter Emergency Medical Services (HEMS), responding to patients who have suffered trauma or serious medical emergencies. They operate 24 hours a day, ensuring they can be there for the most critically ill and injured people in the region.

They operate two aircraft – one from their Marden base in daylight hours, and the other from their Redhill base 24 hours a day. This means that no matter where you are in Kent, Surrey or Sussex, you are never more than 20 minutes away from the life-saving care that only they can bring directly to your side.

The Millbrook team hopes that their walk will inspire others to support this charity and visit their Just Giving page at to donate.

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Grant of £4,000 from Surrey Freemasons to air ambulance

Photo: Surrey Freemasons presenting a cheque for £4,000 to the air ambulance

A grant of £4,000 from Surrey Freemasons was presented to crew members of Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance last week (Thursday 16th June 2017).

A cheque presentation was held at the charity's Redhill base, followed by a talk from Director of Operations, Leigh Curtis, about how their continuing support has made such a difference.

The grant, which comes from the Masonic Charitable Foundation, is funded by Freemasons and their families across England and Wales.

The life-saving charity operates throughout the South East covering an area of 3,500 square miles and a population of 4.5 million people.

So far this year, their crews have been called to more than 900 missions, helping the most critically ill and injured people in the region.

During 2017, Freemasons around the country will be presenting 20 regional air ambulance charities with grants totalling £180,000.

Lynne Harris, Director of Income Generation for the charity, said: "We are so grateful to Surrey Freemasons for their continuing generosity. Without support like this, we simply would not be able to continue our life-saving work."

David Olliver, of Surrey Freemasons, said: "We are so pleased to continue supporting the great work of Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance. Supporting the work they carry out in our communities every day is something to be proud of."

Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance relies almost entirely on public donations to raise in excess of £6.5million each year. To find out more, go to