Nottingham

Lincs & Notts Air Ambulance seeks ex-patients for 25th birthday

Sarah Layden Image copyright Lincs & Notts Air Ambulance
Image caption Sarah Layden has raised funds for the air ambulance since her near fatal bicycle crash

People treated by an air ambulance have been asked to get in touch as the charity marks its 25th anniversary.

The Lincs & Notts Air Ambulance has completed more than 19,700 missions since it became operational in 1994.

Bosses said patient stories show how the service, which costs £2.5m a year to run, can be the difference between life and death.

Nurse Sarah Layden, who suffered head injuries while cycling in a park, said: "Without it I wouldn't be here."

Image copyright Lincs & Notts Air Ambulance
Image caption The air ambulance service is planning to move from 12-hour coverage to 24

Ms Layden was cycling with friends in Bestwood country park in 2014 when she crashed.

"I fell 30 feet and landed on my head and suffered a traumatic brain injury.

"Because we were in a disused quarry, there was no access for the land crew to get to me. I was unconscious and my partner was panicking.

"I wouldn't have survived had I not got to intensive care so quickly, without it I wouldn't be here," she said.

Karen Jobling, the air ambulance's chief executive officer, said: "It is so important for us to share the stories of our former patients, as it highlights how vital our life-saving service is within our local communities, while recognising the amazing work of our crews who attend these potentially life-saving missions daily."

Ms Jobling confirmed there were plans to run a 24/7 service - as opposed to the current 07:00 to 19:00 cover - which will push running costs to £4m a year.

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