LETTER: Helicopter financed by charity

I WOULD here refer to the forthcoming TV series which is already scheduled to feature the Great North Air Ambulance.

I can confirm that the lovely people who make possible such an essential service may rely eternally upon whatever support I am able to provide.

However, for clarification, I would share with you the following revealing experience and personal memories.

At a formal meeting in the Hartlepool Borough Council chamber a senior/consultant member representing the North Tees & Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust clearly referred to “our helicopter”.

The reference was part of an answer to a simple question regarding the obvious emergency ambulance problems which were already occurring, taking people to the University Hospital of North Tees and the reality that they would not get any better at Wynyard.

When asked the simple “what if” question, regarding road closures or even delays via everyday road traffic incidents, the audacious expert clinician said: “We would use our helicopter.”

I am confident that most ordinary people know that the Great North Air Ambulance helicopter and its services are all financed through charity.

It is my considered opinion that the service is so essential that it should be part of the NHS package.

However, it is not!

It is not cheap.

It cannot be run continuously upon one-off contributions, no matter how magnificent.

It is a continuous and relentless grind by magnificent people to donate, collect, and to organise the cash stream required.

I personally am proud to be associated with The Boundary 500 Motorcycle Group which, to date, has collected and donated more than £520,000.

My personal efforts are shamefully minuscule when compared with those of others.

However, I have been a biker all of my life, including that of my last school year.

Thereby I recognise that such laudable charitable efforts are not the kind of activities which most people assume to be forthcoming from a group of motorcyclists.

However, I guarantee that you will never hear a Boundary 500 member refer to the Great North Air Ambulance as being ‘theirs’.

But perhaps the trust is partaking and self-prescribing audacity as part of its well-known package of knowing everything better than do we ordinary people

I sincerely hope that none of you will ever need the life-saving service provided by the Air Ambulance angels who are forever watching over us all.

Via public charity.

You may well be moved to add your support when you have seen the TV series.

Keith Fisher,

Formby Close,

Hartlepool.