1. Impressive Somerset Freemasons!

    October 31, 2016 by Lara Lucas

    dsc01078On behalf of the Province of Somerset Freemasons, Sandy Kemlo and William (Bill) Tame visited our Wellington offices to present a donation of £2,000. Bill was airlifted in 2009 after a motorcycle accident, so was thrilled to present the donation to the Charity. Tina Viksna, Fundraising Manager was delighted to accept the donation on behalf of the Charity and to hear about the Province’s forthcoming plans.

    As part of a national celebration of 300 years of Freemasonry in the UK, the Province of Somerset Freemasons are also aiming to raise an impressive £15,000 for the Charity. It is hoped that the funds will be raised by donations from each lodge in Somerset and also be topped up by the Province to achieve their target by May 2017.

  2. Team o’ Tumblers Raise Tens of Thousands

    October 25, 2016 by Tracy

    Photo taken by Emma Harris Photography shows Rupert Rees and Bill Sivewright displaying the amount raised (£67,734.90) by Team o' Tumblers in the past three years. Behind is Patrick and Lavinia de Pelet who both took part in the 2015 C2C Cycle Challenge

    Nearly four years ago, the racing and hunting community from Cattistock, Portman, South Dorset and Blackmore and Sparkford Vale hunts decided unanimously to support the Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance by entering a team into the Charity’s Coast to Coast Cycle Challenge.

    For some, it was not only the challenge of getting themselves fit and being able to cycle 54 miles, it was also about bringing themselves to wear Lycra and padded shorts.  In the spirit of the challenge and in a bid to raise as much as possible, many a MAMIL (Middle Aged Men/Maiden in Lycra) has since joined the enthusiastic group who call themselves Team o’ Tumblers.

    In the past three years, the team has raised a grand total of £67,734.90 in support of the Charity and held a presentation and photo opportunity at the opening meet of the Blackmore and Sparkford Vale hunt last weekend at Inwood.

    Rupert Rees, spokesperson for Team o’ Tumblers said:

    “If you ride horses, you are inevitably going to suffer a fall at some point; but very often this is in some remote field miles away from anywhere.  We absolutely love supporting Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance and believe they are such a wonderful charity.  All sorts of people from the hunting and riding community, mostly with no particular cycling experience have joined Team o’ Tumblers over the years and we have all thoroughly enjoyed the fundraising experience.  As a team, we have managed to do our little bit in the hope that we won’t ever need to use the service however, if the helicopter and crew appear over the horizon to save a friend in need, weSome of the members of Team o' Tumblers who cycled C2C this year are always eternally grateful.”

    Bill Sivewright, Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance Chief Executive Officer was delighted to attend the presentation and said:

    “We are extremely grateful for the long term support of Team o’ Tumblers and it was particularly nice to be able to acknowledge the tremendous efforts of the cyclists and the incredible amount of funds they have raised over the last three years.  The team’s spirit, courage and determination stands out every year during the event.   Some face the challenge of cycling further than they have ever done before.  For others it’s about doing so faster than before.  The Team may represent the full range of cycling ability but they are all absolutely top of the range in enthusiasm!”

  3. Lottery Results!

    October 14, 2016 by Lara Lucas

    LotteryCongratulations to the winners of this week's Flight for Life Lottery!

    Our Lottery draw takes place every Friday. The results get posted to our website automatically once the draw is made. You can check whether you are one of the lucky winners by visiting our lottery pages or by clicking HERE.

    You can also find all the information you need to know on how to join the Lottery by clicking HERE. It only costs £1 a week and by joining you could be in with a chance of winning one of our cash or consolations prizes every week!

  4. Docbike Project Presents Dorset’s First ‘Bikerdown!’ Course

    October 12, 2016 by Tracy

    Bikerdown!Last week saw the collaborative delivery of Dorset’s first ‘Bikerdown!’ safety initiative event.

    Hosted in partnership with the Docbike Project, Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance, Dorset Police and proudly sponsored by Bournemouth Bikes, the fully booked event was held at the Safewise Centre in Bournemouth and saw Dr Ian Mew (Dorset Police Medical Advisor and Air Ambulance Trauma Doctor) and PC Chris Smith (Dorset Police Bikesafe Co-ordinator) deliver a three hour engaging seminar, free of charge.

    The duo educated riders on what to do the moment a motorcycle incident occurs including safely securing the scene, making sure an ambulance is called,  treating a casualty and the controversial subject of how to safely remove a motorcycle helmet.

    Bikerdown ClassroomThe event concluded with a talk about the ‘science of being seen’ where PC Smith explored the effectiveness of Hi-Viz, how best to use it and other factors including ‘motion camouflage’, ‘looming’ and tips on how riders can best be seen without wearing bright fluorescent pink from head to toe.

    Feedback from the event was excellent.  Students said that they would recommend the event to their fellow riders and friends and subsequently would now have the confidence and knowledge to step forward and potentially make that life-saving difference following an incident.

    Those who attended received a free first aid kit, designed to be stored on a motorcycle, thanks to ‘Bikerdown!’ sponsors Bournemouth Bikes.

    Dr Ian Mew Said: “I’m really pleased our first event went really well, especially after all the hard work and planning from everyone involved.  We have delivered potentially life-saving lessons to these students, giving them the confidence to step forward and make a real difference if the situation arises.”

    PC Chris Smith said: “In the event of a motorcycle accident, the first person on scene is often a fellow biker. Our Bikerdown! seminars build upon the success of our Bikesafe courses, developed to reduce the casualty rates across Dorset’s roads. I’d like to personally thank everybody who attended as it’s people like them, who could help us save lives. That cannot be understated.”Bikerdown!

    Mike Lawrence, Managing Director, Bournemouth Bikes said: “I’m very proud to be involved and support the Biker Down courses. The content delivered by Ian and Chris, is both comprehensive and invaluable.  If just one of us who attended has to call on the skills taught and save a life, then Bikerdown is a winner!”

    Alison Shelton, Chief Executive, Safewise said: “We are so proud to be hosting this series of events at Safewise Bournemouth.  This unique insight into “first on scene” from the emergency services, shared in our life-sized training village is priceless.”

    Two more events are planned for 2016 which take place on: Tuesday 1 November and Tuesday 13 December.

    More information about the ‘Bikerdown!’ course and the Docbike Project can be found at the Docbike website. www.docbike.org or by contacting Director of Communications, Matthew Brown on 07736 304277 or by email: matt.mccabebrown@btinternet.com

  5. It’s Deep, It’s Dorset and It’s supporting Us!

    October 11, 2016 by Tracy

    Deepest DorsetDorset and Somerset Air Ambulance is one of three principal beneficiaries of a new book called Deepest Dorset, which celebrates what makes the county special, through the voices of many of the people who live here, from shepherds to earls, television celebrities to organic farmers.

    The full colour hardback book, by Fanny Charles and Gay Pirrie-Weir, published by Deepest Books is priced at £20 and has already received high acclaim!  It is raising funds for Dorset & Somerset Air Ambulance, Dorset Community Foundation and the Weldmar Hospicecare Trust.  There will also be a donation to the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.

    Clive Aslet, former editor of Country Life magazine, gave Deepest Dorset a four-star review in the Mail on Sunday, where he described it as “a bulging scrapbook of local history, folklore, crafts, recipes and topography, including contributions from the many distinguished folk to be found there, from Julian Fellowes {“Dorset has kept us sane,” he says) to Kate Adie. No wonder Dorset was voted best place to live in Britain. It’s a county of endless variety and wonder.”

    Helen Stiles, editor of the Dorset magazine, says: "Best book I have ever seen on Dorset – a fabulous portrayal of true Dorset where past meets future and the present is celebrated by real people from shepherds to earls.”

    Tanya Bruce-Lockhart, director of Bridport Literary Festival, says: "Deepest Dorset is both a treat and a treasure.”

    Deepest Dorset can be ordered by phone or email.  Simply visit: www.deepestbooks.co.uk or click on the book image which will take you direct to the page.  Alternatively you can email: info@deepestbooks.co.uk or telephone: 01963 32525


  6. DSAA shortlisted as finalists in two Awards of Excellence

    October 7, 2016 by Tracy

    DSAA In ActionDorset and Somerset Air Ambulance is delighted to announce that it has been shortlisted in two categories at this year’s Air Ambulance Awards of Excellence.  The finalists have been announced by the Association of Air Ambulances and the winners will be revealed at an awards ceremony to be held on 14 November 2016 at the Millennium Gloucester Hotel, London.

    Critical Care Paramedic (CCP) Neil Bizzell is shortlisted in the Air Ambulance Paramedic of the Year category and the air ambulance crew of Dr. Jeremy Reid, CCP Leonie German, CCP Paul Owen and pilot Mario Carretta have been shortlisted in the Special Incident Award category.

    Neil Bizzell became the newest member of the Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance team when he joined on 1st September 2015.  He has a passion for education and training and is enthusiastic to the core. Not set to use this for his own benefit, he thrives on giving back what he has learnt to so many others including his ambulance service colleagues, health care students and multi-disciplinary clinicians.

    Critical Care Paramedic Neil BizzellNeil has created immersive educational days which are aimed at informing others of the capabilities and skills that Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance can provide, ensuring that the aircraft and crew are tasked appropriately.  He has pump primed these activities with his own time; giving hundreds of hours to prepare, deliver and follow up on them.  The effects on this for patients has literally been life size; in the last year, 52 patients who would not normally have benefitted from the team’s care have received treatment.  These cases have been specific requests from Ambulance Service clinicians at the scenes of incidents who have all personally attended education sessions that Neil has delivered.

    The incident which sees Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance become a finalist in the Special Incident Award category took place earlier this year.  The crew were tasked to a serious motorcycle incident at the bottom of a deep, narrow, heavily wooded quarry.  The nearest and safest landing site was a field on the rim of the quarry approximately half a mile from the incident.

    Two motorcyclists had collided head on; one patient suffered serious injuries and the other had immediate life-threatening injuries due to being struck in the throat by the motorcycle handlebar.  This patient was in a mortal state and without the organisation, motivation, teamwork and skills delivered by the Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance team, he most certainly would have died.CCP Leonie German, CCP Paul Owen, Dr Jeremy Reid and pilot Mario Carretta

    Every aspect of the mission demonstrates the benefits of a helicopter borne Critical Care Team; the rapid deployment of a regional specialised clinical capability to a remote location, landing as near to the incident as possible by an experienced HEMS pilot, flexible deployment of a full critical care capability well beyond the aircraft’s vicinity (due to the fitness and motivation of the aircrew), rapid assessment and decisive life-saving interventions carried out when a patient needs them and onward safe medical transport to the hospital best suited to the patient’s needs.

    Bill Sivewright, Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance Chief Executive Officer said:

    “We are extremely proud that our Critical Care Team have once again been recognised nationally for their outstanding work.  Knowing how modest Neil Bizzell is, this is likely to come as a surprise to him but not to the rest of us.  His commitment to patients and to the team is absolute and I believe that he is an example to us all.  With regards to the Special Incident Award, we could have put forward a number of incidents for consideration, but in the end we selected an incident that demonstrated clinical excellence and outstanding teamwork.  It is without doubt the team who were on duty that day saved this patient’s life and the mission is an exemplar of air ambulance activity.”

    Jim Fitzpatrick MP, Chair of the Judging Panel commented further and said:

    “The judging panel for this year’s Awards were full of praise for all nominees. There are clearly some remarkable people operating in the air ambulance community, where everyone plays their part, from volunteers to doctors, pilots to paramedics, fundraisers to marketers. These awards recognise all those people and more. I know the judges found it a very difficult task to choose between some outstanding nominees but what is clear is that each and every nominee is an exceptional individual or team, and I would like to thank all of them for their hard work, courage, determination and vision. With great difficulty, the judges narrowed down the field and we can all now look forward to the winners being announced in November.”

    A full list of categories and all those shortlisted as finalists in the 2016 Air Ambulance Awards of Excellence can be found by visiting: http://www.associationofairambulances.co.uk/news/70/

  7. Travis Perkins get in the mix with Scruffs to Support DSAA!

    October 5, 2016 by Lara Lucas

    scruffs-logoAs part of the Scruffs ‘Masters at Work. Masters of Workwear’ UK tour, visitors to Travis Perkins Bridport on Thursday 6th October will be invited to try their hand at the ‘Top of Your Game’ football challenge, where tradespeople will be given the chance to score a goal into a cement mixer!

    For each ball booted into the mixer, Scruffs will make a donation to Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance.

    Tradesmen taking part on the day will compete to win a football shirt of their choice, a pair of Scruffs GORE-TEX® boots, and to be entered into a random prize draw to win a £250 Scruffs voucher. The person who scores the most goals on the day will also be up for the title of ultimate tour champion, who will receive £1,000 in cash, with the runners up also receiving a 50-inch screen TV and £250 worth of Scruffs vouchers.

    The ‘Masters at Work. Masters of Workwear’ tour is kicking off on September 8th and is spanning the whole of the UK from Inverness to Portsmouth. The highlight of each roadshow event will be a virtual reality trip to the top of the Severn Bridge. Tradespeople will be invited to test their nerve on a job like no other, in a stunning hi-tech simulation created by Scruffs Workwear.

    Peter Wets of Travis Perkins, says: “We’ve chosen our donations to go to Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance as many members of our community benefit from the great work they do.

    “We’re big supporters of Scruffs and our customers can’t wait to kick off the charity challenge.”

    Scruffs will be visiting Travis Perkins, St Andrews Works, Bridport, Dorset, DT6 3DJ on Thursday 6th October as part of the ‘Masters of Workwear Tour’.