Thursday, 26 May 2016

Shoppers raise £2,762 for air ambulance

Photo: Air ambulance volunteer Bryan Mayfield and patient Bob Morgans

Shoppers at Marks & Spencer in Tunbridge Wells raised more than £2,700 for Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance in a raffle to win a brand new convertible Mini Cooper.

Staff and volunteers for the life-saving charity sold tickets for the draw at the Fountains Retails Park store last week (May 17th, 18th and 19th).

Among the customers were former patients Bob Morgans, from Southborough, who survived a cardiac arrest, and former school minibus driver Les Garrett, from Tonbridge, who was involved in a road traffic collision.

A grand total of £2,762.81 was raised in ticket sales and donations for the Win a Mini draw in aid of the Marden-based air ambulance which relies almost entirely on public support.

The £19,000 three-door Caribbean Aqua 1.5 Mini Cooper, a brand new model, boasts tyre pressure monitoring, a Thatcham 1 alarm system, ISOFIX child seat system, front foglights, on-board computer, DAB digital radio and Bluetooth hands-free function with USB audio, reversing camera and parking distance sensors.

The charity is very grateful to Barretts of Canterbury, a Kent-based family-run business famous for its motor dealerships in Canterbury and Ashford who are supporting the year-long campaign.

Tickets for the raffle cost £5 each and can be purchased online at and the draw will take place on March 31st, 2017, making it a perfect present for the summer months.

Last year's raffle was held to celebrate the charity's Silver Jubilee and raised more than £210,000 – enough to fund 84 potentially lifesaving missions.

Staff at Marks & Spencer chose the air ambulance as their 2015/2016 Charity of the Year and raised a grand total of £5,068.

Air ambulance Lottery Manager James Cook said: "We are really grateful to Marks & Spencer Tunbridge Wells for allowing us to come back for a second year to promote the Win a Mini raffle, and to the public for their support.

"Each helicopter callout costs about £2,500 so the fantastic sum raised again this year will effectively fund a potentially life-saving mission."


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