Theatre-goers put hand in pocket for air ambulance


Generous Consett theatre-goers have turned small change into life-saving missions by donating to their local air ambulance. The Empire Theatre at Consett collected more than £1,500 for the Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS) during their performance of Snow White. The theatre chose to support the charity after their duty manager Ian Brown, from Stanley, was killed in a road accident between Stanley and Chester-le-Street last year. The GNAAS trauma team airlifted him to the Royal Victoria Infirmary, in Newcastle, but he died from his injuries five days later. David Paull, Theatre Manager, said: “The charity is very close to our hearts.

Generous Consett theatre-goers have turned small change into life-saving missions by donating to their local air ambulance.

The Empire Theatre at Consett collected more than £1,500 for the Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS) during their performance of Snow White.

The theatre chose to support the charity after their duty manager Ian Brown, from Stanley, was killed in a road accident between Stanley and Chester-le-Street last year.

The GNAAS trauma team airlifted him to the Royal Victoria Infirmary, in Newcastle, but he died from his injuries five days later.

David Paull, Theatre Manager, said: “The charity is very close to our hearts. Both theatre staff and local residents in the area think a lot of the service. They help anybody in need, no matter who you are, and this is why we thought it was fitting.”

This is the second time the theatre has chosen to collect for the charity, taking their total amount raised to nearly £2,500.

Mr Paull said: “Our audience members are very generous because they know the amazing work the air ambulance does in the area. We thanked them each night for their on-going support.”

The charity relies solely on public donations to fund the £4m needed to run the charity each year, flying three helicopters across the North East, North Yorkshire and Cumbria.

Mandy Drake, head of fundraising at GNAAS, said: “We want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has contributed towards the total. It just goes to show much small change can really add up. It is a great positive from a tragic story.” 

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