The design of the new Cornwall Air Ambulance helicopter has been unveiled by the charity.
Designed in collaboration with the charity, members of the community and marketing agency Wolf Rock, the helicopter will return to its original red colour with yellow chevrons. It incorporates the charity’s proud Cornish identity, with the St Piran’s flag and Cornish language prominent features on the livery.
The helicopter will cost £7.5million, and for the first time in the charity’s 32-year history, will be owned by the charity and not leased.
Barbara Sharples, Trustee & Chair of the New Heli Appeal Board, said: “We are delighted to be able to give our supporters a glimpse of what the new helicopter will look like. It’s their helicopter and it is only thanks to the generosity of everyone that has supported the appeal so far that we are at this stage. We have a long way to go in the New Heli Appeal fundraising campaign- with over £750,000 left to raise by April 2020, so we need everyone’s help to turn it into Cornwall’s brand new air ambulance and bring it home where it belongs.”
The AW169 helicopter is being built in Italy by helicopter specialists Leonardo. It will continue to bear an Italian registration while it undergoes manufacturers test flights over the next few months, before being brought to the UK to be fitted out with a special medical interior.
Paula Martin, Chief Executive of Cornwall Air Ambulance, said: “We set up the public appeal to raise the last £2.5million needed to buy the helicopter and we can now see we are so close to achieving the target. The paramedics and doctors cannot wait for the day when the new helicopter flies its first lifesaving mission.”
Steve Murdoch, Chief Operating Officer at Cornwall Air Ambulance, said: “It is really exciting to see the new helicopter take to the skies on an initial test flight, but it is not yet the finished article. There is a lot of work still to be done to turn it in to an air ambulance that will be ready to serve the people of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly for the next 20 years.”
There is still time to support the appeal and at the same time have your name or a loved one’s name added to the underside of the new helicopter before it arrives. For a minimum donation of £100, your name will fly alongside the crew to missions across Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. Don’t miss out on a place, visit https://cornwallairambulancetrust.org/appeal/heli-heroes/