East Anglian Air Ambulance says plans for 24/7 service will still go ahead despite £1.7m losses

East Anglian Air Ambulance Credit: ITV Anglia

The East Anglian Air Ambulance say that it will push ahead with a new 24/7 service from a new headquarters in Norwich, despite a challenging year and forecast losses of £1.7m.

This week, the charity's chief executive Patrick Peal visited the site of EAAA's new Norwich Airport base to mark the end of exterior building works, which have been delayed by 16 weeks due to the pandemic.

The project was originally due to be finished by the end of 2020. Credit: East Anglian Air Ambulance

The £7 million base project was started in January of this year and was originally planned to be finished by the end of 2020.

It's a key development in enabling the charity to start flying 24/7.

The funds for the base were ringfenced from years of generous gifts committed before the Covid-19 pandemic hit. 

EAAA plans to start flying 247 next year. Credit: Perfect Pose photography

In the financial year July 2019 to June 2020, EAAA exceeded its fundraising target and finished its financial year with a surplus of £1.1 million.

The charity is predicting a £1.7 million shortfall due to the pandemic.  Credit: P J Spillings

The additional income was due to a one-off government grant, its PPE appeal for un-budgeted equipment and an incredible response from its supporters since March when the first lockdown was implemented, and charity donations were at risk of declining. 

However, for the current financial year the charity is predicting a £1.7 million shortfall as its fundraising income is hit by the effects of the pandemic. 

EAAA is currently also on standby to support the region's hospitals with critical care transfers during the second lockdown.