Wiltshire Publications

Westbury League of Friends supports local charities

The Westbury & District League of Friends has presented money to two local charities, Wiltshire Air Ambulance and Hope for Tomorrow, to help support the health needs of those living in the Westbury area.

A cheque for £443 was presented to the Wiltshire Air Ambulance to help fund their new helicopter which will be in service in December while a second cheque for £574 was presented to Hope for Tomorrow  to fund their Wiltshire mobile chemotherapy unit which visits the White Horse Health Centre in Westbury each week.

Carrie Aldous, manager at the Wiltshire Air Ambulance supporters’ shop in Westbury said, “The Wiltshire Air Ambulance currently shares its helicopter with Wiltshire Police but, as of December, will have its own helicopter.

“We want to say a big thank you to the Westbury & District League of Friends for their kind donation which will go a long way and help us achieve the £2.6million needed every year to keep our new helicopter flying. The Wiltshire Air Ambulance is not government funded, so we rely on these charitable donations.”

The cheque for Hope for Tomorrow was presented  by young Hermione Sonnet, granddaughter of Erica Watson from the League of Friends.

Erica said, “Westbury is very lucky to have access to this facility which saves patients from having to travel a considerably long journey for treatment. At present only patients from Salisbury Hospital are able to use the facility, but hopefully patients from the Royal United Hospital, Bath, will have access to the facility before too long.

Rosa Woodley, head of events and community fundraising at Hope for Tomorrow said, “We’d like to say a big thank you to the Westbury League of Friends for their very kind donation, which will help to keep the unit on the road, allowing more cancer patients to receive their chemotherapy treatment closer to home.”

Hope for Tomorrow was founded in 2003 to help the huge number of people with cancer who face issues travelling long distances to access chemotherapy.  The aim is to eventually have a mobile unit in each county, and so far the charity has managed to provide seven units.  The units cost £260,000 to set up and then £12,000 per year to operate and service.

The Westbury & District League of Friends raised the money by having a quiz and raffle night at White Horse Country Park.

Erica Watson from the Friends said, “This event was really well attended with lots of shops and businesses donating prizes. We’d like to thank them and  the White Horse Country Park for their support.

“The League of Friends feels it is very important to support the health needs of local people in the Westbury area. We therefore need to contribute to those services not funded by the NHS such as the Wiltshire Air Ambulance which relies on donations.

“We want to thank the people of Westbury and the surrounding areas for their support and hope they will consider us in the future.”

The Friends continue to fundraise regularly.