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Helicopter chief’s life saved by air ambulance

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Steve Landrey and David Braithwaite

A PEMBROKESHIRE aviation boss whose own life was saved by the Wales Air Ambulance has raised thousands of pounds for charity.

Steve Landrey, 51, has embarked on an epic 186-mile walk to raise thousands of pounds for Wales Air Ambulance and the British Heart Foundation.

Steve, who worked as European managing director for air ambulance operator, Babcock, collapsed while out cycling with friends. He suffered a cardiac arrest and stopped breathing.

Thankfully the Wales Air Ambulance was able to respond swiftly to the scene and gave Steve the lifesaving care he needed.

Ironically, Babcock holds the contract to run the Wales Air Ambulance’s aviation operation.

Steve said: “It was incredible to be on the receiving end of the work I was previously involved in providing. Like every other patient, I was in a frightening and vulnerable situation and without the fast response and quality care offered by the Wales Air Ambulance critical care team and others on the scene I may not be here today.

“Undertaking this fundraising walk is my way of showing my thanks for the care I received. When I managed Babcock’s European air ambulance operations I was always proud of the people who worked with me but this has just reinforced my faith in their dedication and expertise.”

When he collapsed, Steve was with his brother-in-law Chris, who quickly started CPR. He was also fortunate that in the traffic passing the scene was an off-duty fire officer with his first responder girlfriend. They had made a wrong turn on a day out and had a defib unit with them, which they used to restart Steve’s heart.

After the air ambulance arrived, its critical care medics escorted Steve via a road ambulance to hospital in Swansea.  

After having an emergency stent procedure, Steve was discharged from hospital three days later and the road to recovery started.

Just nine months later he started his epic challenge, with his cardiac rehabilitation instructor David Braithwaite, and has already clocked off more than half of the186 miles.

Steve, who is walking twice a week to get the miles in, has also been joined on his fundraiser by his wife Katrina and their two dogs, Jumble and Nigel. Family and friends will also join them throughout the challenge.

The former managing director has smashed his fundraising target of £1,500 by so far raising £2,451.

Steve added: “The pandemic has certainly made us all aware of the incredible job our medical professionals provide for us all. When you come into emergency contact with it as I did, it is certainly a humbling experience.

“All funds will go to the British Heart Foundation to support the incredible work they do to support those suffering from cardiac conditions and the critical research work they undertake and the Wales Air Ambulance Charity for the invaluable emergency medical response they provide across Wales.

“I’m very pleased with the amount raised so far. It would be fantastic if we could raise more and perhaps double the amount by the end of the walk.”

Babcock Director Hayley Belmore said: “We know what we do is important, and we are extremely proud to be part of the incredible service the Wales Air Ambulance Charity provides, but when you respond to someone you know, it really amplifies it. Everyone at Babcock is so pleased Steve has made such a good recovery and we wish him the best for his epic fundraiser!”

Dr Sue Barnes, Wales Air Ambulance Chief Executive, said: “It’s a great relief to hear that Steve is recovering well after his illness and that we were able to be there for him in his time of need. Our Charity has worked in partnership with Babcock for many years and Steve was on the receiving end of a service that he has proactively been involved in. It’s incredible to see his resilience following his cardiac arrest and his fundraising efforts will benefit two very important charities. On behalf of our Charity, I’d like to offer my heartfelt thanks to Steve and his supporters.

You can show your support to Steve by donating to his Virgin Money Giving fundraising page Steve Landrey – Walking 186 miles of Pembrokeshire Coast Path

https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/SteveLandrey

There are several ways that the public can continue to support the Wales Air Ambulance.

These include online donations, signing up to the Charity’s Lifesaving Lottery or by coming up with their own innovative ways to fundraise at home. Further information can be found via www.walesairambulance.com. 

Alternatively, a £5 text-message donation can be made by texting the word HELI to 70711.

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Unprecedented demand on health and social care services in local area

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Joint statement by Hywel Dda University Health Board, the Welsh Ambulance Service NHS Trust, Pembrokeshire County Council, Carmarthenshire County Council and Ceredigion County Council

The urgent statement we have asked to publish is as follows:

THERE is currently an unprecedented demand on health and social care services across Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire, which is leading to significant delays in care provision. Put simply, the difficulty in discharging medically-fit patients from hospital – many of whom have complex personal circumstances and needs – is leading to significant bed shortages, and consequently, lengthy ambulance waits at the ‘front door’ of A&E departments, which mean that paramedics are unable to respond to other 999 calls in the community.Social care and Health teams are doing everything possible to support people who are well enough to leave hospital but need ongoing care. Priority is being given to the most vulnerable, and alternative health and care packages are being offered as a short-term measure. More carers and health staff are also being recruited to support people in need.

If you have a relative or loved one in hospital who is well enough to go home, but is waiting to be discharged with homecare and community health support, you may be able to help them to get home more quickly if you and your family are in a position to support them at home. If your relative is waiting for a formal package of care, you may be able to offer support and care on a short term, temporary arrangement or you might want to consider whether your loved one could be supported in a temporary residential or nursing care setting. If you feel that this is an option that you could consider, please speak to the ward manager or your social worker to explore further.

Spending as little time in hospital is better for patients and means that NHS beds can be freed up for others with urgent care needs. Supporting older patients to get home from hospital efficiently is an important part of their recovery and it also protects them from negative consequences of hospital admission, such as hospital acquired infection, falls and a loss of independence.  You can find out more about the hospital discharge process and guidance here: Inpatient information – Hywel Dda University Health Board (nhs.wales)

Your support not only helps your loved one, but it is a huge support to the NHS and social care services as well.

Thank you.

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Child taken to hospital following collision with car outside school

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AN EARLY morning collision outside Ysgol Harri Tudor school, Pembroke, has seen a child taken to hospital.

The collision happened between a child and a car on Pembroke Road, Pembroke, at approximately 9am this morning.

A secondary school pupil has been taken to hospital via ambulance for what is said to be minor injuries.

Police and ambulance service were on the scene and were helped by school staff to manage the incident.

A police spokesperson said: “Dyfed-Powys Police attended a road traffic collision involving a car and a secondary school pupil this morning, 21st October 2021. The collision occurred on Pembroke Road, Pembroke at approximately 9:00am.

“The Ambulance Service also attended and escorted the teenage boy to hospital with what are believed to be minor injuries.”

A Pembrokeshire County Council spokesperson said: “We can confirm that there has been an incident outside Ysgol Harri Tudur in Pembroke this morning where a pupil came into contact with a car. 

“The police and ambulance have been on the scene and were assisted by school staff. We are not able to release any further details at present.”

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‘Exercise caution’ say police following altercation with man ‘living in woods’

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POLICE are encouraging the public to ‘exercise caution’ whilst walking in Gwenarth Woods, Little Milford, after multiple reports of an individual acting aggressively.

A spokesperson for Dyfed-Powys Police has confirmed to this newspaper that they have had several reports regarding an individual that is presumed to be living in the woods, acting aggressively towards walkers in the area.

Some have taken to Facebook to warn others who may walk in the area to be cautious after an altercation with the individual.

Reports suggest that the male has set up camp in the woods and has laid claim to part of the land, blocking footpaths, rights of ways and demanding money from those he feels are ‘trespassing’.

One incident that has been shared across Facebook happened on Sunday, October 17, whilst a mum and her young son were walking through the woods.

The man is said to have become confrontational, following the pair and demanding money after they walked through ‘his land’.

Speaking on the incident the woman said: “He basically told me to “get off his land” to which I replied it was not his etc etc.  He was shouting at me, and I was getting really angry as well. He literally pounced out of nowhere, and to be honest, shocked me a wee bit. Especially as I had my son with me. 

Little Milford: Police said that the public are encouraged to exercise caution if they choose to visit this area

“He followed me all the way to the gate by the stream, which in his mind is the boundary of “his land”. 

“When I say followed, I mean he was inches behind me all the way.

“Then he was demanding money from me as I was on his land. And I am never allowed there again.

“Needless to say, I phoned the police.”

Others took to the post to share similar encounters they have had with the same man.

Police have confirmed that they are working closely with other agencies to come to a solution.

They have asked the public to remain cautious, avoid confrontation and to report any further matters to them immediately.

A police spokesperson said: “Dyfed Powys Police has received several reports regarding a male person causing local walkers concern in Gwenarth Woods, Little Milford, Pembrokeshire.

“Police are working closely with other agencies in order to find a timely solution to this complex matter.

“Meanwhile, the public are encouraged to exercise caution if they choose to visit this area, to avoid confrontation and to report any matters to the Police immediately.”

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