Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Car club drive for funds

Air Ambulance Director of Communications, Jill Playle and Dick Slaughter, 1st place winner of the ‘Charing Rosebowl’ for the Special Stage Rally Driver/Navigator of the Year.

Motor sport enthusiasts stepped up a gear when they made a donation to the Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance at their annual Awards Dinner Dance on Saturday evening.

The Maidstone & Mid Kent Motor Club is one of the oldest car clubs in Kent and was formed in 1935. Over the years the club has counted a number of prominent local businessmen among its members including amateur and professional drivers.

A number of the club’s sporting events are named after its original members and this year they chose to support the life-saving local charity based at Marden.

Air Ambulance Director of Communications, Jill Playle presented awards to the winners of categories including car trials and tarmac and grass auto-tests.

She said: “The charity relies almost entirely on the generosity of the people, businesses, charitable organizations and societies, groups and clubs such as Maidstone & Mid Kent Motor Club.

“We are very grateful to them for supporting the charity and for their kind donation.”

Winners were presented with cups, trophies and medals for motor sport events which took place throughout the year. The Club Treasurer of the Maidstone and Mid Kent Motor Club, said “The Club is very pleased to support this very worthy charity which operates to the benefit of the whole community”

The motor club welcomes new members as either spectators or competitors and meets every third Tuesday of the month at the Park Gate Inn in Hollingbourne.

Monday, 25 February 2013

It Only Takes A Minute...to save a life

A Take That tribute band are coming Back for Good in a concert to help raise funds for Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance’s night flying appeal.

The Magic of Take That brings together superbly-choreographed and talented singers in one spectacular stage production at Caterham School on April 6th.

The concert is being organised by Caterham, Oxted and Godstone Lions Club and starts at 8pm with a licensed bar from 7pm and free parking available.

The act was already regarded as the most dynamic of its kind on tour before Robbie Williams re-joined the boy band in real life after a 14-year absence.

The brand new show includes Robbie’s hits Angels, Let Me Entertain You and Rock DJ along with Take That classics such as It Only Takes a Minute, Babe, Greatest Day and Patience.

In an interview with the real Take That on Steve Wright’s Radio 2 show, original band member Jason Orange praised the tribute act.

He said: “They were brilliant, better than us. I could spot all the lads. They had the mannerisms, the outfits and the haircuts. They were just all a bit taller than us, a bit more handsome and better singers and dancers.”

Lions Clubs in the South East have pledged to raise £250,000 over the next 10 years to help the Air Ambulance achieve its aim of night flying from Redhill Aerodrome.

The funds will be a significant contribution towards the additional £1million a year needed to provide a 24-hour service and save more lives.

For tickets, which cost £15, and for more information call Bob Frost on 01883 343328 or go to www.coglions.co.uk


Monday, 18 February 2013

Kingston students pictured at the climbathon

A group of students have successfully climbed the equivalent height of Mount Everest in a sponsored climbathon for Surrey Air Ambulance.

Eighteen members of Kingston University Mountaineering Club completed the challenge at the White Spider Urban Climbing Centre at Tolworth last Wednesday (February 13th).

They set themselves a target of scaling a 10-metre wall 885 times in 12 hours but went on to climb 1,122 times in half the time.

KUMC Vice President Victoria De-Valembois Siddall said: “It was such an adrenaline rush to complete it in less than six hours.

I had spent a lot of my time organising the event so actually taking part was an amazing feeling of achievement.

“We were all worried that it would be physically demanding but once we got started we all forget about it being tough. In the end, a few of us were rather competitive and managed to climb 100 times each.”

The students have so far raised £600 for the Air Ambulance including £92 from a cake sale and can still be sponsored at www.justgiving.com/KUMC

They chose the life-saving charity as the helicopter is often called to sport and leisure accidents and falls from height.

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Ironman Isaac prepares for Herculean challenge

A Herne Bay student is to embark on the challenge of a lifetime by taking on an Ironman triathlon in a bid to raise £10,000 for Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance.

Isaac Searle, a PE and sport student at Christ Church University, is aiming to complete a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bike ride and a marathon run in just 11 hours.

The 21-year-old will take part in the event in Barcelona on October 6th and his fitness will be tested as part of a study into the effects of training on amateur athletes.

Two year ago, he successfully climbed the world’s tallest freestanding mountain, Mount Kilimanjaro, but admits to feeling “absolutely terrified” by his latest challenge.

He said: “I’ve always wanted to do a triathlon but they say you should never do the Ironman as your first because it is such a long and draining experience. I don’t know what I’ve let myself in for.

“It’s quite difficult to fit in all the training around my studies and my sleep patterns have been completely ruined. I’m having to get up to go out on a bike ride at 5.30am and then go to university.”

Isaac, of Curtiswood Park Road, spends six days a week running, swimming, cycling and lifting weights and is planning to run the Tonbridge Lions Triathlon in May to help him with his fitness.

In between his training and studies, Isaac has also been busy organising fundraising events to reach his target of £10,000 for the life-saving Air Ambulance charity.

He held a quiz night at Herne Bay Rowing Club which raised £600 and will also be packing shopping bags to help raise funds. To sponsor him, go to www.justgiving.com or text IMAN55 to 70070.

The Ironman Triathlon became known for its gruelling length, harsh race conditions and television coverage.

The world championships of the event have been held annually in Hawaii since 1978 and most Ironman events have a strict time limit of 17hours to complete the race.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Blood transfusions will help save lives

Photo Blood Launch, L-R: Paul Ormond, General Manager Corporate Affairs Honda UK; John Surtees, Founder Henry Surtees Foundation; Dr Malcolm Russell, Clinical Lead Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance Trust; Adrian Bell, Chief Executive Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance Trust; John Kidd, SERV Kent.

Former F1 World champion John Surtees, OBE, helped launch an innovative new service on Monday that will help to save up to 100 lives a year.

From February 4th blood is being carried on the charity’s two helicopters to allow the specialist doctor and paramedic team to carry out transfusions at the scene of medical emergencies. The Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance is one of the first air ambulance services to do this outside of London.

The launch of the new blood transfusion service has only been made possible by a unique charity partnership between the Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance, the Henry Surtees Foundation and SERV (Service by Emergency Rider Volunteers) and NHS partners - the East Surrey and William Harvey Hospitals and NHS Blood and Transplant.

John Surtees, founder of the Henry Surtees Foundation, presented a cheque for £25,000 to Air Ambulance Chief Executive, Adrian Bell yesterday at the Marden base of the charity. The foundation has funded the cost of the blood transfusion equipment on board the aircraft, and has also funded two Honda CRV cars for the transportation of blood in all weathers, once again bringing together the name of John Surtees and Honda, who he drove for in the late 60s.

John Surtees said, “A large part of my life has been spent on the racing tracks of the world trying to save time.  I am very grateful to all of those who have helped the Henry Surtees Foundation provide the Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance with blood transfusion equipment and the Honda vehicles to transport the blood.  The speedy delivery of this new service to the scene of an emergency will help save lives and injury.”

SERV (Service by Emergency Rider Volunteers) will take delivery of the new cars which will allow them to transport blood in special temperature-controlled containers to the Air Ambulance bases at Marden and Redhill on a daily basis and in all weathers. The blood stocks will be kept at the William Harvey Hospital at Ashford and the East Surrey Hospital at Redhill where SERV will pick up and return any un-used supplies to the hospitals so that none is wasted.

Until now, the Air Ambulance has only been able to replace lost fluids with a saline solution and patients requiring transfusions were taken to hospitals. Now this advanced medical procedure can be carried out at the scene of an accident or emergency.

Chief Executive Adrian Bell said: “I consider the carrying blood products on the Air Ambulance to be a very exciting development.

“It is a major step forward for the charity in the way we look after the patient and give them the best possible service.

“What is equally exciting is the partnership that we have, with three charities working together along with two hospitals and NHS Blood and Transplant to make all of this happen.”

Monday, 4 February 2013

Ain't no mountain high enough for Kingston climbers

A group of students are aiming to climb the equivalent height of Mount Everest next week (February 13th) in a sponsored climbathon for Surrey Air Ambulance.

Eighteen members of Kingston University Mountaineering Club will attempt to scale a 10-metre wall 885 times in just 12 hours - a total of 8,850 metres.

The challenge gets under way at 10am at the White Spider Urban Climbing Centre at Tolworth and there will also be a raffle of Marmot outdoor clothing.

KUMC Vice President Victoria De-Valembois Siddall said: “It’s going to be a very challenging 12 hours and very painful, especially for our hands.

“Because of the nature of our sport, we rely on the Air Ambulance if we have an accident so it‘s

vital that we raise money to help keep the two helicopters airborne.”

Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance attended 1,339 call-outs last year and 16 per cent of them were falls from height.

The students have so far raised £370 of their £500 target and can be sponsored at www.justgiving.com/KUMC