Midlands Air Ambulance buys £4.5m Shropshire helicopter

Midlands Air Ambulance chairman Brendan Connor with air operations manager Becky Tinsley and chief executive Hanna Sebright Charity chairman Brendan Connor, pictured with air operations manager Becky Tinsley and chief executive Hanna Sebright, said donations funded the helicopter

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Night flights could be conducted by Midlands Air Ambulance after bosses bought the service's first helicopter.

The new £4.5m EC135T2e helicopter, which will be based at RAF Cosford in Shropshire, is equipped with the capability for night flying.

It will replace one of three EC135 helicopters which are currently leased.

The charity is exploring the viability of flying at night and plans to launch a public appeal in the new year to help raise the extra funds required.

Midlands Air Ambulance chairman Brendan Connor said: "The new £4.5m helicopter has been entirely funded through public donations, demonstrating the incredible support our vital life-saving service receives from local Midlands communities and businesses, which we are extremely grateful for."

'Save more lives'

The new helicopter will be delivered to Bond Air Services in Staverton in December and be operational from RAF Cosford from March.

It is currently being painted and fitted with pre-hospital medical equipment, plus additional equipment for potential night flying.

Mr Connor added: "The new aircraft will undoubtedly help us to save more lives as it presents us with an opportunity to expand our incredible service and deliver the best possible patient care to those we airlift.

"But we cannot afford to rest on our laurels and although this is a milestone achievement in our 22 years of service, we need the support from the local communities we serve now, more than ever."

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