Craig Williams MP and Russell George MS have encouraged the public to give their views to the second stage of the formal engagement process into the future of the Wales Air Ambulance which launched today.
Phase two of the engagement process into the future of the Wales Air Ambulance service launched on Monday 9th October. The process is due to last until Sunday 5th November with several public meetings planned.
Both Montgomeryshire representatives have seeked to hold to account the various organisations involved in the future of the service since the shock leak of the proposals in August 2022.
Both have worked closely with local campaigners, and met with Stephen Harrhy, the Chief Ambulance Service Commissioner who is leading the engagement process into the future of the Air Ambulance.
With a short window of less than one month to gather public views on phase two, Russell George MS and Craig Williams MP are stressing the public to present to get involved once again and present their views - even if they have previously contributed.
Mr George said:
“We are disappointed that the supporting documents on which phase two of the engagement process is based were published just three days before the tight schedule of public meetings commences. This does not give local people sufficient time to scrutinise and analyse the documents.”
''It has been clear throughout the formal process that people across Mid Wales are almost unanimous in their strong belief that Welshpool’s base should remain open. Mr Harrhy’s report today made that strength of feeling clear - with specific references to how rural areas like ours feel left behind.”
“While the Welshpool base will now operate to 2026, we need to keep up the united pressure the campaign has generated so far to protect our Air Ambulance provision for the long term.”
Mr Williams commented:
“The maps showing fly times of 24 minutes from the existing bases at Welshpool & Caernarfon show how both of these current locations are superbly placed to serve all of North and Mid Wales.”
“The documents released state that 90% of the public want to be reassured that a plan is in place to support patients to the same standard as today. Given the wide range of issues in this process so far, it is not unreasonable for people to have concerns that we will be left with a poorer service if bases are closed.”
“Rural areas like Montgomeryshire and broader Mid Wales have a critical need for this vital service. A combination of our agricultural sector, rurality and poor roads mean that the Air Ambulance is literally a life-saver for people here.”
The public can engage with the process in several ways, such as by visiting https://easc.nhs.wales/engagement/sdp/ or attending the public meetings in this second phase, listed below:
12th October: 18:30-19:30 - Welshpool High School, Salop Road.
13th October: 18:30-19:30 - Newtown High School, Dolfor Road.
16th October: 18:30-19:30 - Ysgol Bro Hyddgen, Machynlleth.