Russell George MS and Craig Williams MP say they are pleased with news that the air ambulance base in Welshpool will stay in place for the next three years but are urging residents to engage in the consultation process to ensure its fate beyond 2026.
Last August, EMRTS Cymru – a service within the Welsh NHS – and The Welsh Air Ambulance Trust first announced plans to reconfigure their service, which included the concerning news that they propose to close the base in Welshpool.
Mr George and Mr Williams, along with many others, have campaigned against the proposals.
The Trust has today announced they have renewed a lease with Welshpool Airport for a further three years, although its future beyond then is still to be addressed. The engagement process where residents will formally be asked for their views is due to commence soon.
Commenting, Russell George MS said: “I am delighted with the news that the air ambulance base in Welshpool will stay in place for the next three years.
“This would not have been possible without the dedicated commitment of the local campaigning by so many people. I am incredibly proud of our area’s response to support this vital provision and am grateful to councillors, groups, and individuals for all the effort they put in.
“I am proud to have led a debate in the Senedd in January calling on the Welsh Government to keep open the air ambulance bases in Welshpool and Caernarfon, raising issues like the distance from major hospitals.
“But this is merely a battle won – the fight goes on to secure a base that remains in Mid Wales for decades to come and I urge everyone who wants to see it retained to engage in the consultation process as soon as it starts.
Craig Williams MP added:“I’m pleased the air ambulance base will remain in Montgomeryshire for now, but I am concerned that we have only pushed back the decision on its fate. It is now essential we all work together to present our valid concerns.
“There has been a fantastic effort locally to campaign for the retention on the base in Welshpool. I’d like to thank the many people who paid for and displayed signs.
“With the Welsh Government’s aversion to new roadbuilding and poor funding of local government, we know just how essential access to air ambulances are in our rural community as part of delivering healthcare in our part of the country.”