Monday, 27 February 2017

Lions hit £250,000 night flying appeal target

Photo: Dr Malcolm Tunnicliff pictured with a response car donated by the Lions

Lions clubs across the South East have successfully raised a quarter of a million pounds to support the Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance in its ambition to deliver a Helicopter Emergency Medical Service (HEMS) 24 hours a day.

South East Lions Clubs pledged to raise £250,000 over a 10-year period in June 2012. The charity began operating a 24-hour service just over a year later and the Lions have now reached their fundraising target – five years ahead of schedule.

Some of the club members were given a tour of the Redhill-based aircraft this week, with a presentation by Director of Operations, Leigh Curtis, who told them that more than 1,600 patients had now benefitted from the 24-hour service.

Howard Lee, Chairman of the South East Lions Night Flying Appeal, said: "Lions are all about helping those in need within the community, which is exactly what the Air Ambulance is there for. We are really pleased to have been the catalyst to the development of the night flying service, and we will continue to work with them in other ways to help save more lives."

Prior to night operation, the Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance operated two helicopters, with two crews working during daylight hours only. Then, in 2013, the charity replaced one of its aircraft with a newer helicopter, with night flying capabilities, covering Kent, Surrey and Sussex from Redhill.

Recently, some of the £250,000 raised by the Lions was used to buy two response cars to allow the doctor and paramedic team to deliver enhanced care to patients throughout the night.

Lynne Harris, Director of Income Generation for the charity, said: "We are so grateful to the Lions for achieving their incredible fundraising target at this early stage. They should be immensely proud of the difference they have made to those who need us. We are delighted that our partnership with the Lions is set to continue."

Lions Clubs across the South East and South London have been raising funds and providing services and facilities to their local communities for nearly 70 years, helping to make a difference to those in need and in less fortunate circumstances.


Friday, 10 February 2017

George wins £7,000 in Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance Lottery

Photo: Superdraw winner George Osborne

A grandfather from Deal has won more than £7,000 in Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance's lottery.

Retired miner, George Osborne, signed up to the life-saving charity's Regular Lottery and Superdraw in January last year.

The grandfather of five scooped the jackpot in the Superdraw with lucky numbers 7, 29, 32 and 34, winning a grand total of £7,025.04.

George said: "I'm shocked to have won and can't get my head around it! I've only ever won small amounts – nothing on this scale. The Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance is a great cause and I'm happy to have contributed to their great work."

The Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance's Regular Lottery costs just £1 per week and there are 12 winners drawn each week with prizes 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. To join the lottery go to or call 01622 833 833.


Monday, 6 February 2017

Shoppers raise £1,000 for the Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance

Photo: The Mall, Camberley

Shoppers in Camberley raised almost £1,000 for the Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance in a raffle to win a car as the charity awaits the arrival of a new helicopter.

Staff and volunteers sold tickets for the Win a Mini Draw at The Mall last month (January 25th – 26th).

A grand total of £994.46 was raised in ticket sales and donations for the charity, which relies almost entirely on public support.

Head of Lotteries & Gaming, James Cook, said: "We are really grateful to The Mall for giving us a platform to raise awareness of the charity, and to the public for their tremendous support over the two days."

The Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance has taken delivery of a new aircraft, an AW169, which is expected to be operational soon.

Flying faster, further and for longer, it will enable the pilot, doctor and paramedic crews to reach, treat and deliver patients to hospital even faster.

The AW169 has a significantly larger cabin, improving in-flight access to patients, which will allow for the delivery of more life-saving interventions.

Tickets for the Win a Mini Draw cost £5 each and can be purchased online at with the draw taking place on 31st March 2017, making it a perfect present for the summer months.

The £19,000 convertible 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.


Airlifted cyclist on 24 Hours in A&E

Photo: Niki arriving at St George's Hospital

A cyclist airlifted to hospital after a crash in the London to Brighton Bike Ride is to be featured in TV medical documentary 24 Hours in A&E  tomorrow (Tuesday).

Niki, 34, was taking part in the annual charity event last year when he collided with another cyclist at South Nutfield.

He suffered head and arm injuries and had to be given emergency treatment at the road-side by Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance's doctor and paramedic.

He was flown by the Redhill-based helicopter to the specialist neurological unit at St George's Hospital in London, in just 12 minutes.

His friend Chris was ahead of him in the race when he was found unconscious and unresponsive by race volunteers.

Chris said: "I heard about the accident when I got to one of the stopping points. I was thinking this has to be one of the worst things that could possibly ever happen. He was unconscious and he'd been airlifted to hospital."

24 Hours in A&E shows Niki arriving on the rooftop helipad at St George's where consultant Paul prepared his team and talked about his fears for Niki.

He said: "If you hear that a HEMS (Helicopter Emergency Medical Service) call is coming in, you know that this is going to be one of the most sick patients you are going to see."

As doctors assessed Niki's injuries, it became obvious that his memory had been affected by the impact as he struggled to recall details of the crash.

Paul added: "If patients have lost part of their memory, that suggests that their brain has taken a big impact and that immediately alerts you."

Staff at St George's were still trying to contact Niki's wife Phill 300 miles away in the North East as he underwent CT scans.

When she finally arrived at the hospital, Phill spoke about how she and Niki bonded over a mutual love of Monty Python after a night out in Redcar. She moved there to live with her grandmother after losing her parents at a young age.

She said: "He was just really east to get on with, we sat and talked about nerd stuff all night. If anything had have happened differently, I wouldn't have met Niki. I wouldn't change anything because I'd rather have him than what I could have had."

24 Hours in A&E is on tomorrow (Tuesday) at 9pm and if you would like to find out more about the air ambulance or make a donation, go to