Yorkshire Air Ambulance (YAA) celebrated its annual recognition awards on October 19, 2023, at The Principal Hotel, York. The awards evening is a heartfelt tribute to Yorkshire businesses, fundraisers and volunteers who have played a key role in raising vital funds for the life-saving mission of YAA.
YAA staff meticulously selected the finalists, honouring their dedication and willingness to go above and beyond to support the charity and whose commitment to YAA’s life-saving mission has made a significant difference. Their dedication serves as an inspiring example of the positive impact that a community united in a common cause can achieve.
As an independent charity, Yorkshire Air Ambulance relies on the generosity of the public and fundraising initiatives to sustain its life-saving operations.
Linda Stead, Regional Fundraising Manager for North & East Yorkshire, shared her delight in recognising the outstanding fundraising successes throughout the East region. She expressed her gratitude, stating, “It is truly heartening to shine a light on the fundraising achievements across our region and to express our gratitude to the individuals who have dedicated themselves to supporting Yorkshire Air Ambulance over the years. This evening is dedicated to them, and I couldn’t be more delighted to pay tribute to their outstanding work.”
The following remarkable individuals and organisations were honoured at the YAA’s annual recognition awards in the East Yorkshire region:
Volunteers Award: Danielle Reed.
Danielle has been a registered volunteer for the charity since 2017 and has actively assisted at numerous events since 2014. She generously contributes to a range of volunteering activities throughout the year and plays an integral role in the Benidorm Bangers Rally supporting the crew and overseeing the administrative aspects of the rally. In 2020, Danielle took charge of organising the Scarborough Goldwing Light Parade, one of Scarborough’s largest events. These two events alone have cumulatively raised over £90,000 for the YAA.
Individual & Supporter Organisations Award: Oliver’s Mount Racetrack and Mike Thatcher from Seaways Café.
Olivers Mount Racing stands as the UK’s sole road racing circuit, with Andy and Wendy Hayes and family taking the reins in 2019. Hosting four annual racing meetings, hill climbs, and the inaugural supermoto championship, the circuit thrives. The Hayes family’s unwavering charity support includes rider-signed helmets raffled at meetings and a caravan for gear storage, spurring donations. With over £40,000 generously contributed to charity, the East fundraising team anticipates a lasting partnership with Olivers Mount.
Seaways Café, located on the A166 at Fridaythorpe near Driffield in the heart of the Yorkshire Wolds and along the Wolds Way Walking Path, is run by Mike Thatcher and his family. The café has long been a popular meeting point for the motorcycling community and walkers alike. Mike and his team always extend a warm welcome to the charity fundraising team, and fundraising stalls are set up at the café on many weekends throughout the year. Coincidentally, Mike’s birthday falls on the same day as the charities, and he consistently hosts a fundraiser, with all proceeds going to YAA. To date, the café has contributed over £25,000 to YAA.
Corporates Award: ABI.
Based in Beverley, ABI UK constructs static caravans, with hundreds leaving their depot each day. In 2021 and 2022, the company’s 600 employees were given the opportunity to vote for one of four charities to support, and YAA was fortunate to be selected. ABI UK Ltd is deeply committed to ensuring sustainability and reducing the environmental impact of caravan construction. In addition to planting a tree for every unit that leaves the site, they also donate £10 per unit to a charity, as a result, YAA has received over £10,000 in donations to date.
In addition to the East Yorkshire award winners, other noteworthy recipients include The Vickers Staff Charitable Fund, who received the Trusts Award, Shepley Spring received the Outstanding Partnership Award and Peter Sunderland, the former YAA Chairman, received the Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his 20 years of dedicated service to the charity.
The Chairman’s Award was presented to Sir Geoffrey & Lady Rachael Boycott, in acknowledgement of their exceptional contributions and support to Yorkshire Air Ambulance over the years.