Last year the Pride of Cumbria flew nearly five hundred missions around the County. Based at Langwathby near Penrith it is able to drastically cut the time it takes paramedics to reach seriously injured people in Cumbria's most inaccesible areas.
However it operates under a constant threat of being axed. In 2005 it was grounded when funds dried up. The Air Ambulance receives no Lottery or Government funding. Janet Hume co-ordinates the fundraisers that have helped bring it back into service. She said:
We are immensely grateful for our existing volunteers who do an incredible job in spreading the word and helping out where needed. We would like to invite residents of the region to join our ranks, and to use whatever spare time they may have to make a difference to this charity which is dedicated to them. There are a range of different opportunities and we can offer all our volunteers a rewarding experience.
An Open Day for potential volunteers is being held at West Cumbria Trades Hall in Workington on Saturday 16th June
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The 12.5 hour walkout by 63 GMB members got under way at 6am this morning and will continue until 6.30pm this evening.
37-year-old Graeme Haddon pleaded guilty to the offence which happened in his home village of Lamancha near West Linton at the weekend.