East Anglian Air Ambulance crews start work in new HQ at Norwich Airport

  • Watch a full report from ITV News Anglia's Rob Setchell.

Crew members for the East Anglian Air Ambulance are moving into their newly built headquarters at Norwich Airport. 

The seven million pound base will mean the charity can start flying 24-7 from late June. 

Our previous headquarters were incredibly cramped, in need of several improvements and we were renting additional office space elsewhere in Norwich. The new base solves these problems and gives us extra facilities as well as room to grow in the future.

Patrick Peal, CEO of EAAA
  • By operating through the night the charity estimates it could be used up to six hundred times more each year. 

The new headquarters called 'Helimed House' for the EAAA at Norwich Airport. Credit: BlueSky UAV

The opening is six months behind schedule due to the pandemic.  

The EAAA currently flies up until midnight from the Cambridge base, but there is no air cover through the early hours of the morning, with rapid response vehicles used instead.

We’ve dreamt of being able to fly 24/7 for years as we’re fiercely passionate about making sure the same standard of critical care is available, by helicopter, right across East Anglia no matter what time of day or night it is. We know people don’t stop having cardiac arrests, strokes or road traffic collisions when the helicopter goes offline and we've been working towards this for several years.

Patrick Peal, CEO EAAA

Planning was officially granted for the base in November 2019 with ground works starting in January 2020.

Construction was halted by the coronavirus pandemic but was only pushed back to six months behind the original schedule.

  • EAAA aims to raise £15 million a year to deliver and develop its service.

The new purpose-built base brings all of its Norwich-based teams under one roof for the first time.

The base also includes a community hub and training and conference facilities, as well as an immersive training suite for its clinical teams.