Monday, 28 May 2012

Charity clay shoot hits £8,000 target

Photo 1: White & Sons Senior Partner Andrew Farrant takes aim

Photo 2: Smoking gun: One of the shooters

Photo 3: Top Team – Team Alex

Racing driver Ash Miller and Surrey Air Ambulance’s chief pilot were among the teams who took part in a clay shoot which raised more than £8,000 for the life-saving charity on May 16th.

The up-and-coming British Touring Cars driver was in the Sitting Ducks side who took on Captain Steve Wood’s Whirly Boys and 11 other teams at Europe’s leading shooting school at Bisley.

But the Top Team award went to Team Alex including John Newton whose daughter was airlifted by the helicopter following a road traffic collision in 2010.

Novices and experienced shots alike took aim at targets such as the “bolting rabbit” and the Top Gun prize went to the aptly-named Alan Warren.

The day-long fundraising event attracted a total of 50 shooters and was sponsored by estate agents White & Sons who also entered a team.

Senior Partner Andrew Farrant told them: “We became involved in raising money for Surrey Air Ambulance six years ago.

“The more we learn and see what the doctor and critical care paramedic achieve in saving lives the more we are addicted to supporting the organisation. It’s a very simple recipe – speed and clinical excellence.

“What is so important is that the Air Ambulance saves lives in our community daily. God-willing it won’t be one of us driving home this evening, but that is the reality.”

Prizes including a pair of tickets to watch Top Gear, a pleasure flight, paddock passes to British Touring Cars, a golf day and shooting lesson went under the hammer in an auction held by Bargain Hunt and Antiques Roadshow presenter Jonathan Pratt.

Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance relies almost entirely on public donations and needs £5million a year to keep both helicopters flying.

Each emergency call-out costs an average of £2,500 so the sum raised from the clay shoot has funded three potentially life-saving missions.

Quiz and karaoke night

A school supervisor saved by Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance is to hold a quiz and karaoke night in aid of the life-saving charity this Friday (June 1st).

Nichola Fish, 27, was involved in a serious road traffic collision on the M20 at Maidstone last September.

She suffered head, chest, abdominal and pelvis injuries and was given emergency treatment at the road-side before being airlifted to the major trauma centre at King’s College Hospital in London.

Her partner Steve Gough also suffered head and chest injuries and was flown to the Medway Maritime Hospital at Gillingham by Kent Air Ambulance’s sister helicopter in Surrey.

Nichola and Alan have since made a good recovery and are now organising a fundraising evening at St John Fisher Catholic School in Chatham where she works.

The quiz night starts at 6pm with a maximum of six players per team. For tickets, which cost £5 per person, call the school on 01634 335557 or email nichola_fish@hotmail.com

 

Fundraiser to carry Olympic torch

A keen sportsman who has helped raised almost £200,000 for local charities has been chosen as an Olympic torch bearer in recognition of his fundraising efforts.
Medical student Jerome Condry's latest challenge is a 1,500-mile bike ride from the birthplace of the Olympics to the London 2012 stadium in aid of Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance.
The 21-year-old will be joined by his father Canon Edward Condry and a dozen other cyclists as they pedal through Italy, Switzerland and France before they arrive in Stratford on July 15th.
On July 20th, he will then carry the Olympic torch through Chatham to herald the start of the eagerly-awaited games.
He said: “It was really amazing and un-expected to be nominated and it’s a real privilege. I’ve always done this sort of thing since helping out at church fetes.
“When I was nine I washed lots of cars and sold teas and coffees to raise £1,000 for a walk we did in Morocco.”
Although not particularly sporty in his childhood, Jerome caught the bug during a climbing trip in the Atlas Mountains sponsored in aid of a local hospice.
In 2007, he cycled from Canterbury to Rome in 16 days and raised £145,000 for 10 local charities. He has also rowed the English Channel and the length of the Thames, raising more than £40,000 for charity.
He now rows at Oxford where he is currently sitting his final exams at Corpus Christi but has still found time for his Olympic challenge.
The group will cycle an average of 100 miles a day and will be monitored as part of a scientific study by Dr Damian Coleman of Canterbury Christ Church University.
He will be testing all the riders and giving them individually-tailored training programmes to maximize their fitness.
His findings will be used as part of a university research project on the effect of extreme exercise on the human body. The most gruelling part of the ride will be a 6,909ft climb at Gotthard Pass over the Alps in Switzerland.

Sponsor their 2012 challenge visit www.kent.fundraiseairambulance.co.uk/o2o_2012 or text AIR OLYMPICS to 70300. To visit their website go to http://www.o2o2012.org/ 

Get quizzical for Air Ambulance

Photo: Stu Plumbley, Critical Care Paramedic, Clinical Lead, Dr Malcolm Russell and HEMS Dr Emma Rowland

A quiz night in aid of life-saving charity Kent Air Ambulance is to be held in Ashford next month.

Teams of six to eight people are needed to test their general knowledge at Conningbrook Hotel in Kennington on Sunday, June 24th,  at 6pm.

Tickets cost £10 per person and include a food platter for each table. Booking is essential so please contact Cheryl Johnson on 01622 833833 or email cherylj@kssairambulance.org.uk.

Kent Air Ambulance is a life-saving charity which provides a Helicopter Emergency Medical Service (HEMS) for everyone living, working and travelling in the county, 365 days a year.

The helicopter flies with a highly-skilled doctor and critical care paramedic who take the skill and expertise of an A&E department to the patient at the scene of an accident or medial emergency.

All proceeds from the quiz night will go directly to the service which is funded almost entirely by public donations.

Monday, 21 May 2012

24 hours in A&E

An award-winning TV documentary is to feature the life-saving work of the doctors and paramedics who fly on the Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulances.

The first episode in the new series of Channel 4’s 24 hours in A&E started last week (May 16th) and told the patient stories of Kevin from Kent and Sarah from Brighton.

Kevin was helping a friend when he fell about 8ft from scaffolding in Meopham and suffered serious head, chest and spinal injuries.

Dr Dan Roberts and critical care paramedic Chris Fudge anaesthetised him and carried out chest surgery at the scene – skills usually performed in hospital.

The father-of-four was flown to the major trauma centre at King’s College Hospital where 91 cameras filmed round the clock, offering unprecedented access to one of Britain’s busiest A&E departments.

Kevin was in a critical condition following his accident in January but 24 hours in A&E charts his amazing recovery from severe brain damage, 10 broken ribs and a broken collarbone.

He said: “To still be here now makes me feel a bit like a Superman character because 99 out of 100 people wouldn’t be sitting here now. It’s just unbelievable really.

“They had to do major surgery to relieve the pressure on my brain so I’m incredibly lucky.”

Sarah, from Brighton, sustained a severe head injury after falling from her pushbike as she swerved to avoid a pedestrian.

Clinical Lead Dr Malcolm Russell, Dr Magnus Nelson and critical care paramedic David Wright anaesthetised her at the road-side and flew her to King’s in just 20 minutes. The journey would have taken twice as long by road.

She also suffered brain damage and was transferred to the hospital’s intensive care unit but has since made a good recovery.

She said: “I don’t remember the crash and I lost the best part of four days. Most people who get these injuries are dead. These injuries normally kill people.”

24 hours in A&E is on every Wednesday at 9pm and recently won a Royal Television Society Award.

This week’s episode features the story of a horse rider who was crushed between a fence and her horse after it was spooked in Sittingbourne.

More winners in Mid-Summer Draw

Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance has raised the prize fund in its 2012 Mid-Summer Draw with one lucky winner guaranteed to scoop the jackpot of £5,000.

The draw will take place on June 21st with the runner-up receiving a second prize of £1,000. And there will now be a third prize of £250 followed by five further prizes of £50, making a total prize pool of £6,500.

The life-saving charity’s 2011 Christmas Draw raised more than £170,000. Each call-out by the helicopter costs about £2,500, so the sum raised was enough to potentially save 68 lives.

Head of Lottery Katie Underdown said: “Our raffles are a major part of our annual fundraising plan which help to raise the £5million needed each year to keep both helicopters operational.

“Relying almost entirely on public donations, it is through the incredible generosity of our supporters that we are able to continue to provide this essential service to everyone living, working and travelling in the counties every day.”

This year’s Mid-Summer Draw was launched by 250cc British Grasstrack Champion Craig Drury, from Sevenoaks, who was saved by the Air Ambulance following a racing incident at Collier Street last September.

He said: “We would be truly grateful if you could do a little extra to help the Air Ambulance by purchasing or selling raffle tickets.

“Your support means that they can continue to help many more people like myself in unexpected and traumatic circumstances. It is through kind donations and funds raised from draw tickets that enabled the Air Ambulance to save my life.”

Raffle tickets cost just £1 each in books of 10 and can be ordered by calling 01622 833802. The closing date for the draw is June 14th. 

Run a half marathon and help save lives

Runners are being urged to get out of the starting blocks and claim 10 free Kent Air Ambulance charity places for this year’s Tonbridge Half Marathon.

The life-saving charity has again been chosen to benefit from this year’s run which takes place on Sunday, September 23rd.

Runners who take the 10 free places must apply by Friday, June 29th, and will be expected to raise a minimum sponsorship of just £100.

Dame Kelly Holmes started last year’s inaugural event which raised funds for a number of charities including the Air Ambulance.

The helicopter carries a specialist doctor and critical care paramedic who can carry out advanced medical procedures at the scene of an accident or emergency, giving patients the best chance and quality of survival.

The emergency service relies almost entirely on public donations and needs £5million a year to keep both helicopters flying. Each call-out costs about £2,500.

If you would like to take up one of the free places or more information call Kent Air Ambulance Fundraising Manager Cheryl Johnson on 07738 486633 or email cherylj@kssairambulance.org.uk.

Be a winner in Air Ambulance lottery

An Epsom mother is planning a holiday to the Canary Islands this summer after wining the top prize of £1,000 in Surrey Air Ambulance’s charity lottery.

Katharine Johnston, of Moormead Drive, joined the midweek draw after her son was airlifted to hospital by the Air Ambulance in Cornwall.

She forgot about her £8-a-month subscription until her she received a call to say she had won the jackpot in last Wednesday’s draw.

She said: “I wasn’t aware until I signed up to the lottery that the Air Ambulance is almost entirely self-funded. I’m very impressed by what they do, having had first-hand experience.

“When my son had his accident it took the helicopter about 10 minutes to get to hospital but it took his girlfriend more than an hour to drive there.”

Surrey Air Ambulance’s regular lottery costs just £1 a week with 12 weekly winners of amounts ranging from £25 to £1,000.

The charity also has a Superdraw, which costs an additional £1 a week, and the maximum jackpot is £25,000 – a life-changing amount. To join, call 01622 833808.

Monday, 14 May 2012

Be a winner in Superdraw

An Englefield Green grandmother has won the jackpot of almost £20,000 in Surrey Air Ambulance’s charity lottery after picking her lucky numbers based on family birthdays.

The winner, who does not want to be named, scooped the top prize in the Superdraw with numbers 8, 18, 21 and 30 in last Wednesday’s draw.

She now plans to buy a new car and take a two-week holiday to her dream destination in Cyprus.

She said: “Nothing like this has ever happened to me before. We won about £250 on the National Lottery nine years ago but nothing as big as this.

“My £8-a-month subscription has come in really handy and I had to ask the lady at the Air Ambulance how much I’d won, three times. I couldn’t believe I’d won £19,790.”

Surrey Air Ambulance’s regular lottery costs just £1 a week with 12 weekly winners of amounts ranging from £25 to £1,000.

For an extra £1 a week, players can join the Superdraw which has a maximum jackpot of £25,000 – a life-changing amount.

The charity has also launched scratchcards which cost £1 each and are available to purchase from the charity’s website www.kssairambulance.org.uk. Prizes range from £1 to £1,000 but players must be aged over 16.

Stroll along to see Dr Dudley

Families are being urged to put their best feet forward for a first-ever sponsored stroll in aid of Surrey Air at Virginia Water Lake this Saturday (May 19th).

The walk is open to everyone and will feature a special appearance from mascot Dr Dudley who will be hiding along the 4.5-mile route.

Walkers will also have the chance to “spot the wildlife” and enjoy stunning scenery including beautiful azaleas and rhododendrons in full bloom.

A total of 31 walkers have so far signed up but more are being urged to register on the day when the fundraising walk starts at 9am.

Children can bring their scooters and tricycles and will have the chance to meet Dr Dudley and have their photographs taken with him.

Refreshments will be available during the walk sponsored by TWM Solicitors and there will be a raffle.

Registration costs £5 per family or individual and can be completed online at http://www.kssairambulance.org.uk/Community/WhatsOnSurrey/event/54

For more information call Fundraising Assistant Karen Milton on 01483 266322 or email karenm@kaat.org.uk.

Get on your bike for charity ride, says BBC’s Sally Traffic

Radio 2 travel reporter Sally Traffic has again signed up to Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance's Double 100 Bike Challenge.

Sally Boazman is well known to listeners for her travel updates and regular chats on the Steve Wright, Simon Mayo and Jeremy Vine shows and is affectionately known as Sally Traffic.

Now she has agreed to be the driving voice behind the life-saving charity's Double 100 which has become an annual fundraising event and will this year be held on June 10th.

Almost half of the call-outs attended by the two helicopters based at Marden in Kent and Dunsfold in Surrey are road traffic collisions.

Sally said: "I know from first hand experience how invaluable the Air Ambulance is. Many, many lives are saved every day because of the dedication and expertise of the teams that work tirelessly to be where they're needed most. 

"I'm honoured to be attending the forthcoming fundraising event at Dunsfold and would urge you all to get on your bikes and make some money for this wonderful charity."

Sally has become a national cult figure and is even known as the patron saint of road-users. She has also been voted one of the most attractive female voices on UK radio.

More than 80 riders joined last year's inaugural Double 100 but organizers are this year aiming to double the number of entries.

Chief Pilot, Captain Steve Wood, and critical care paramedics Stu Plumbley and Justin Carding and former patients will be among this year's riders.

The 100-mile or 100km ride starts and finishes at Dunsfold Park - the home of BBC's Top Gear – and takes in all four counties covered by the Air Ambulance – Kent, Surrey, East Sussex and West Sussex

Sally will be at the helicopter base to welcome cyclists back and celebrate their amazing achievement with family and friends.

All entrants must pay a registration fee of £25 and a minimum sponsorship will be required which will go towards the £5million cost of keeping both helicopters flying.

Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance carries a specialist doctor and critical care paramedic who can carry out advanced medical procedures at the scene of an accident or medical emergency, giving patients the best chance and quality of survival.

For more information about the Double 100 and to register visit the website: www.kssairambulance.org.uk/fundraising/double100 or call Corinne Hitching on 07784 229717 or email corinneh@kssairmabulance.org.uk.

Ex cycle speedway champion joins charity bike ride

A former cycle speedway rider from Polegate will be among the cyclists taking part in a charity bike ride next month.

Father-of-one Jamie Cheshire, 34, used to ride for Hellingly Lions at the Lower Dicker recreation ground, winning the National League in 2003.

The former Eastbourne Herald and Sussex Express reporter is now the Press Officer at Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance.

On June 10th he will be taking part in the life-saving charity’s Double 100 Bike Challenge and has appealed for other keen cyclists to join him.

He said: “The helicopters are often called to injured cyclists on the road and the South Downs so this is a great way to thank the pilot, doctor and paramedic for helping them in their hour of need.

“I’m really looking forward to doing the 100-mile ride with some of our crew members. I’ve cycled the South Downs Way from Winchester to Eastbourne, which is also 100 miles, but that was over three days, not 24 hours.”

The Double 100 is a 100-mile or 100km bike ride through all four counties covered by the Air Ambulance and has become an annual fundraising event.

Radio 2 travel reporter Sally Traffic will be at the Surrey and Sussex helicopter base at Dunsfold – home of BBC’s Top Gear – to welcome the riders back from their ride.

She said: “I know from first hand experience how invaluable the Air Ambulance is. Many, many lives are saved every day because of the dedication and expertise of the teams that work tirelessly to be where they’re needed most. 

“I’m honoured to be attending the forthcoming fundraising event at Dunsfold and would urge you all to get on your bikes and make some money for this wonderful charity.”

More than 80 riders joined last year’s inaugural Double 100 but organizers are this year aiming to double the number of entries.

Chief Pilot, Captain Steve Wood, and critical care paramedics Stu Plumbley and Justin Carding and former patients will be among this year’s riders.

All entrants must pay a registration fee of £25 and a minimum sponsorship will be required which will go towards the £5million cost of keeping both helicopters flying.

Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance carries a specialist doctor and critical care paramedic who can carry out advanced medical procedures at the scene of an accident or medical emergency, giving patients the best chance and quality of survival.

For more information about the Double 100 and to register visit the website: www.kssairambulance.org.uk/fundraising/double100 or call Corinne Hitching on 07784 229717 or email corinneh@kssairmabulance.org.uk.  

 

Saddle up for Air Ambulance bike ride, says rescued cyclist

A Lindfield grandmother rescued by Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance has appealed for fellow cyclists to join a fundraising bike ride in aid of the life-saving charity next month.

Heather Barling, 61, was cycling in the village when she was knocked off her bike in October, 2010, and suffered serious head injuries.

She was given emergency treatment at the road-side by the helicopter’s doctor and paramedic before being flown to Queen’s Hospital in Essex in just 25 minutes – a journey that would have taken twice as long by road.

Heather is still receiving hospital treatment and is unable to ride her bike due to ongoing balance problems but has urged other cyclists to take part in the Air Ambulance’s Double 100 Bike Challenge on June 10th.

She said: “Although I have no memory of my accident apart from a fleeting memory of a man with a kind face who knew my name (a local ambulance team paramedic), I know I owe so much to the Air Ambulance crew and all the medics who looked after me.” 

Her husband John, also a keen cyclist, added: “Were it not for the rapid response of the emergency services and the speedy evacuation by helicopter to the specialist trauma unit in Romford I knew we might have been looking at a different outcome.

“Before the accident I was in the middle of a lifetime’s ambition to cycle to the four extreme points of the compass on mainland Britain and Heather was my support team.”

More than 80 riders joined last year’s inaugural Double 100 and organisers are aiming to at least double the number of entries in 2012.

The ride will start and finish at the Surrey and Sussex helicopter base at Dunsfold Park near Horsham – home of BBC’s Top Gear.

Cyclists will set off on either a 100-mile or 100km route which takes in all four counties covered by the Air Ambulance. All entrants must pay a registration fee of £25 and a minimum sponsorship will be required.

To register go to www.kssairambulance.org.uk/FundRaising/Double100 or for more information call Corinne Hitching on 07784 229717.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Young people in Horsham help local company raise £400 for Sussex Air Ambulance and Chestnut Tree House

Photo: Steve presenting a cheque to the Sussex Air Ambulance Crew (from left to right: Critical Care Paramedic David Wright, Dr Emma Rowland and Pilot Captain Pete Driver).

The generosity of over 70 local teenagers has helped to raise £400 for two very worthy charities in our region – the Sussex Air Ambulance and Chestnut Tree House children’s hospice.

The money was raised during the Under 17’s Driving Experience which took place in Horsham over the Easter weekend, and which was organised and manned by Stay Safe Driving School.  

Over seventy 14 – 17 year olds took on the challenge to drive and manoeuvre a real car – many for the first time - under the watchful eye of Stay Safe’s trained instructors.  Each person who took part generously made a donation in exchange for the chance to try out their skills behind the wheel.

The donations were divided between the two charities and were presented to Chestnut Tree House and Sussex Air Ambulance by Stay Safe’s founder and Southwater resident, Steve Lintott.

Steve said, “The Under 17’s Driving Experience was a great way for the next generation of drivers to learn vital safety skills in a controlled environment before they venture onto real roads.  We wanted the event to be about the local community which is why we came up with the idea of offering the experience in exchange for a charity donation.  That way everyone benefits – young people got to have fun and develop important driving skills while two local charities received much-needed funds.”

Stay Safe Driving School also offers driving experiences for 14-17 year olds at Dunsfold Park.  For more information, contact Stay Safe Driving School on 0800 999 2500 or via their website www.staysafedriving.co.uk