Monday, 21 November 2011

Miraculous recovery for biker Joe

Photo 1: Critical Care Paramedic Chris Fudge, Joe Addison and Dr Neal Durge.

A motocross rider has stunned the Kent Air Ambulance medics who flew him to hospital by walking un-aided less than four months after suffering limb-threatening injuries.

Joe Addison was about to mount a 30ft ski jump when a loose wire caused the engine of his 250cc machine to cut out.

The 32-year-old was forced to bale out and broke both his legs as he crashed to the ground at the racetrack in Iden near Rye.

Land paramedics from the South East Coast Ambulance Service (SECAmb) were first on scene and called in the helicopter which arrived within just 10 minutes.

Dr Neal Durge and critical care paramedic Jez Loseby administered strong painkillers and sedated Joe at the track-side.

They also re-set his fractured right femur and broken left ankle before airlifting him to the major trauma centre at King’s College Hospital in London in just 15 minutes.

He spent three weeks at the specialist hospital before he was allowed back home in Sittingbourne and is still off work but expected to make a full recovery.

Earlier this month, he visited the helicopter base at Marden to thank the crew and present a cheque for £500 to the charity which relies almost entirely on donations.

He said: “It was brilliant to see the guys who helped me. They were amazing on the day, they really were. Hats off to them and I really cannot thank them enough.

“When I first saw them and stood up to shake their hands they were gobsmacked. They said they were expecting me to be in a wheelchair. They couldn’t believe I wasn’t even walking with crutches.”

Kent Air Ambulance’s doctor and paramedic can carry out advanced medical procedures at the scene of an accident or medical emergency, giving patients the best chance and quality of survival.

Dr Durge said: “It was good to see Joe because we rarely see the outcome of what we do. The last time we saw him he was clearly in a lot of pain.

“He was very grateful and even more so because the doctors at King’s told him our intervention had made a significant difference to his recovery which has been incredibly quick.”

Joe had finished an impressive fourth out of a field of about 40 riders in the first race and was lying second in his club championship at the time of his crash in August.

Despite missing the last three rounds, he still finished fourth in the championship and will be presented with his trophy at a ceremony in Camber Sands on December 3rd.

He added: “If the accident had been caused by rider error I may have considered quitting but because it was the bike I can’t just stop doing something I love.

“Everyone thinks I’m crazy after the injuries I’ve suffered but I can’t stop. Motocross is like a disease.”

If you would like to make a donation to the Air Ambulance please call 01622 833833. Alternatively cheques can be made payable to Kent Air Ambulance Trust and posted to Wheelbarrow Park Estate, Pattenden Lane, Marden, Kent, TN12 9QJ 


Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Sussex Air Ambulance supported by 'Local Hero'

On Friday 28th October at a glittering ceremony, Sussex fire fighter, Steve Lintott, was presented with the prestigious ‘Local Hero Award’ by radio station, Spirit FM.

As well as being a full time fire fighter Steve runs his own driving school – Stay Safe - and campaigns tirelessly for safer roads in our region.In recognition of his work Steve was awarded the ‘999 Emergency Services’ Local Hero category which acknowledges a member of the emergency services who goes above and beyond the call of duty to help others.

As part of the award Spirit FM generously gave Steve prize money to donate to the charity of his choice. Steve split the prize money between road safety charity, Brake, and another cause very close to his heart, Sussex Air Ambulance.

"It feels incredible to have won this award” says Steve. "There are so many members of the emergency services who go beyond the call of duty every day and never get any form of recognition, so I hope that in winning this award I can help raise awareness of the fantastic job they all do.”

Steve goes on to say "I chose Sussex Air Ambulance because in my work as a fire fighter I have witnessed firsthand how this service saves lives. Often, due to traffic and poor access, road ambulances can’t get to the incident in time to save casualties, which is where Sussex Air Ambulance comes into its own.The doctors and air paramedics are amazingly dedicated and without them, there is no doubt that more people involved in road traffic accidents would die.”
Critical Care Paramedic, Jon Sanders, of Sussex Air Ambulance commented "We’re delighted that Steve chose to support us and congratulate him on his award. The donation will help us continue to provide life-saving medical help to the people of Sussex and also helps raise awareness of the important work our highly skilled crew does every day in our county.”

Steve is very grateful to Spirit FM for organizing this award and for the generous charity prize money. Sally Large, Managing Director of Spirit FM said "Despite receiving lots of very compelling nominations for the 999 Emergency Services category, Steve stood out due to his tireless passion for making the roads of Sussex safer and the work he does to instill the importance of careful driving into young people. It’s clear that Steve puts his heart and soul into Stay Safe and that teaching young people to drive properly is to him far more than just a job.”

Stay Safe offers lessons across East, West and Mid Sussex as well as in Redhill, Reigate, Dorking and Horley. 0800 999 2500

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

High Oscar for 999 Race Day

More than 3,000 race-goers flocked to Fontwell Park’s first-ever 999 Family Race Day on Sunday with a special visit from Sussex Air Ambulance.

Chief Pilot, Captain Steve Wood thrilled the crowds as he landed in the centre of the course and gave them a guided tour of the aircraft.

Visitors also learned about the charity’s life-saving work from Dr Mark Salmon and critical care paramedic Stu Plumbley.

The helicopter then took off as the second biggest race meeting in Fontwell’s calendar got underway with High Oscar among the winners of the seven races.

West Sussex Fundraising Manager, Cheryl Johnson said: “In total we raised almost £1,500 from bucket collections, raffle sales and sales of stock. We also had 27 sign-ups to our charity lottery.

“But more than that we gained vital exposure in the sporting arena with a TV interview in front of the helicopter on Sky At The Races which is watched by millions.

“We would like to thank Fontwell Park for giving us this excellent opportunity to raise awareness and look forward to working closely with them in the future.”

Children were entertained by Sussex Air Ambulance mascot Dr Dudley, Fonty the Horse and Father Christmas.

There were emergency service displays and re-enactments from West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service, South East Coast Ambulance Service and the Sussex Search and Rescue Team.

Fontwell Park also hosted demonstrations by West Sussex Safer Roads Partnership, West Sussex Bike Safe Team, Goodwood Mini Drivers and West Sussex Casualty Reduction Team.

Business Development Executive Chris Walker said: “The day went really well, the weather was fantastic and the theme was strong which led to inflated gate numbers on previous years. 

“In keeping with the emergency theme, the competitive ticket price of just £9.99 for adults with children going free worked really well for advanced sales. 

“The fly-in from Sussex Air Ambulance and the support of the Fire, Police and Armed Forces meant that there was plenty for families to enjoy.”

If you would like to make a donation to the Air Ambulance please call 01622 833833. Alternatively cheques can be made payable to Sussex Air Ambulance and posted to Wheelbarrow Park Estate, Pattenden Lane, Marden, Kent, TN12 9QJ

Monday, 14 November 2011

The Sound of Music

The Maritime Jazz Festival was music to the ears of the Kent Air Ambulance during this year’s Air Ambulance Week.

World famous musicians performed at the four day festival which is organized by the 144 Jazz Club. BBC presenter and vocalist Trudy Kerr started the festival with an evening performance at Dickens World in Chatham and the festival ended with a lunchtime show at Simply Italian in Rochester from Andy Panayi who has worked with famous artists such as Paul McCartney, Elvis Costello and Shirley Bassey.

The 144 Jazz club raised over £500 for the Air Ambulance over the four days. They have supported the charity in the past and will once again be raising funds at their Christmas Party on December 3rd at Dickens World which is being headlined by saxophonist Jimmy Hastings.

Musician Roan Kearsey-Lawson who founded the 144 club said “It is always difficult to know which charity to support; there are so many to choose from!  Perhaps it should be a cancer charity especially after my mum’s fight with Breast cancer?  Well, although that might be an obviously worthy cause, the Kent Air Ambulance is something which is there for everyone at the point of need regardless of who they are, what they look like, or what they have or haven’t done, suffered or championed.  All charities provide for certain or specific groups or needs, but few (if any) provide for others across the board, the Kent Air Ambulance does, she is there for everyone!” (Roan Kearsey-Lawson Maritime Jazz Festival & 144Club) 

The 144 Jazz Club plays host to internationally renowned musicians and vocalists every month at The Roffen Club in Rochester. Details of artists appearing at the club can be found on their website

Jill Playle, Director of Communications for the charity said ‘We are really grateful to Roan and everyone associated with the Jazz Club for their continued support. The musicians who played during the festival attracted good audiences and the Sunday lunch was enthusiastically supported by Giuseppi at Simply Italian.’

Kent Air Ambulance relies almost entirely on voluntary donations. The helicopter responds to between two and three serious medical emergencies every day, at a cost of approximately £2,500 a call.

If you would like to make a donation to the Air Ambulance please call 01622 833833. Alternatively cheques can be made payable to Kent Air Ambulance Trust and posted to Wheelbarrow Park Estate, Pattenden Lane, Marden, Kent, TN12 9QJ

New Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance Website!

We are very excited to announce the launch of our new website

Please explore all our new features!

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Give a gift of life this Christmas

Critical Care Paramedic Jez Loseby, Dr Neal Durge and Critical Care Paramedic Chris Fudge digging the helicopter out of the snow last Christmas.. This photo is available as a Christmas card called It’s Snow Joke! which is part of the 2011 Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance Christmas Catalogue. To order a copy call 01622 833833.


Raffle tickets for Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance’s 2011 Christmas Draw have gone on sale with one lucky winner guaranteed to win the top prize of £5,000.

The draw will take place just three days before Christmas (December 22nd) with the runner-up receiving a second prize of £500.

Last year, the life-saving charity’s draw achieved ticket sales and donations totalling £176,414.

Each flying mission costs around £2,500 so the sum raised was enough to help fund more than 70 life-saving missions.

Lottery Team Leader Katie Underdown said: “It’s due to the incredible generosity of our supporters that we are able to provide this essential service to everyone living, working and travelling in our county every day.

“Our raffles are a major part of our annual fundraising plan which helps to raise the £5million needed each year to fund the service.”

Former Royal Navy servant Gladys Yates, from Gillingham, was delighted to win last year’s jackpot after buying £20 worth of tickets.

She said: “It was a wonderful surprise and I had a lot of people say to me that it was so lovely to know someone who had won.

“It’s only £1 a ticket and even if you don’t win it goes a long, long way to help. So many services are disappearing these days but we’ve got to keep the Air Ambulance flying. It’s a gem.”

Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance flies with a specialist doctor and critical care paramedic who can carry out advanced medical procedures, giving patients the best chance and quality of survival.

The emergency service relies almost entirely on public donations and receives no National Lottery funding.

Tickets for the Christmas Draw cost £1 each in books of 10 and can be ordered by calling 01622 833833.

A Gift in your Will

Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance has joined forces with three local solicitors to provide a free Will-writing service for one week only.

About a third of the life-saving charity’s income comes from legacies and donations in memoriam, allowing the helicopter to stay airborne 365 days a year.

In most cases, solicitors can prepare a Will on the internet, by telephone or by post.

But during Will-Writing Week (November 14th – 21st), members of the public can phone or visit the offices of solicitors in Woking, Worthing and Chichester for a free consultation.

Air Ambulance Initiative Development Fundraiser Corinne Hitching said: “Many people use their Wills to leave a precious gift of a legacy to a favourite charity.

“We would be delighted if they decide to include a legacy to Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance in their will but that is not a requirement of this offer. If they could help us today, their relatives may need us tomorrow.”

Supporters of Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance can leave a legacy which may be free from inheritance and Capital Gains Tax.

For more information or to book an appointment contact Stephen Wright at The Fry Group in Worthing, West Sussex, on 01483 744900 or email

Also, Alexandra Milton or Graeme Black at W.Davies Solicitors in Woking, Surrey, on 01483 744900 or email

And Paul Asling at George Ide Solicitors in Chichester, West Sussex, on 01243 831006 or email

999 Family Race Day

A fly-in by Sussex Air Ambulance will be among the top attractions at the life-saving charity’s first-ever race day at Fontwell Park this Sunday (November 13th).

Racegoers will get the chance to see the helicopter and meet the pilot, doctor and paramedic, subject to emergency call-outs.

There will be emergency service displays and re-enactments from West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service, South East Coast Ambulance Service and Sussex Search and Rescue Team.

The first of seven races gets underway at 12.25pm after a tipping forum in the parade ring, courtesy of Totesport.

Family passes to the Royal International Horse Show and Fontwell Racecourse will be among the prizes of a raffle draw in the Winner’s Enclosure ahead of the final race at 3.20pm.

Other demonstrations will be held by West Sussex Safer Roads Partnership, West Sussex Bike Safe Team, Goodwood Mini Drivers and the West Sussex Casualty Reduction Team.

Tickets booked in advance cost just £9.99 with free admission for children under 16 accompanied by an adult. Hospitality packages are also available from only £35.

Call or book online now on 01243 543335 or

Funds raised on the day will go to Sussex Air Ambulance which relies almost entirely on public donations and receives no National Lottery funding.