Our Anniversaries

Care And Compassion For Over 20 Years

We’ve achieved so many great things together. Read about our journey and how we’ve developed into the charity we are today. From our first WNAA mission 20 years ago, to our launch of DLRAA 15 years ago and the Children's Air Ambulance 10 years ago.

Early Beginnings 2002

Former chairman Malcom Hazell formed the charity under the name Warwickshire and Northamptonshire Air Ambulance, and dedicated its first helicopter as “The Diana Princess of Wales Air Ambulance”.

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  • 595Missions
Volunteers 2003

The service started flying with a helicopter leased from Sloane Helicopters. Doctors volunteered to regularly crew the aircraft, outside of their NHS working hours.

  • Missions: 595
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  • 1,858Missions
Rebranding 2004

Princess Diana Air Ambulance was removed and the service became what it is known as today – Warwickshire & Northamptonshire Air Ambulance.

The initial target was to raise £1,000,000. The lottery scheme and textile bag collections had been set up which provided a core, regular income, and the charity set out to build support from the local community.

  • WNAA leased two Rapid Response Vehicles (RRV) from Rover which supported the aircraft if it was unable to fly.
  • Paramedics were seconded from NHS ambulance services and responded using RRV’s.
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  • 3,618Missions
Helicopter Leased 2005

By mid-2005 the charity raised enough money to pay for the helicopter lease. All paramedics were seconded from the NHS ambulance service and doctors continued to volunteer their time.

  • Donations via standing order raised £9,000 with 200 supporters.
  • Gold fundraising members collectively raised £1,260,000.
  • Income from the lottery reached £8,000.
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  • 5,398Missions
Rebranding 2006

The charity leased a new aircraft, G-MEDS, which arrived at Coventry Airport as the new WNAA helicopter.

  • Partnered with the company, Reclaim to recycle mobile phones.
  • The charity began to take credit card payments.
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  • 7,000Missions
Year Round Support 2007

By its third birthday, WNAA began to provide lifesaving services 365 days a year.

  • WNAA made it onto the Discovery Channel as part of a documentary about A&E.
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  • 9,292Missions
Rebranding 2008

WNAA took over the Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance (DLRAA) and began to provide the same lifesaving services as its now sister, WNAA.

  • DLRAA launched using the G-MEDS helicopter, with WNAA operating under G-WNAA.
  • Single biggest donation to-date was received from The Soroptimist International of Rugby Charitable Trust of £100,000.
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  • 11,881Missions
12,000 Missions 2009

The first charity motorbike Rescue Ride Out took place in Leicestershire.

  • Professional ballroom dancers, Anton du Beke and Erin Boag supported WNAA and DLRAA for a staff team building event.
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  • 14,386Missions
Rebranding 2010

The first WNAA charity shop opened in Rugby, following by an additional nine shops throughout the year.
The charity went through a re-brand and launched a new logo.

  • G-RSCU entered service for WNAA. Volvo RRV’s replaced the Rovers at WNAA.
  • The hero’s run took place for the first time with events in Derbyshire and Leicestershire.
  • In April, the charity moved into the new HQ in Princethrope.
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  • 16,683Missions
  • 10Shops
One Group 2011

Our retail network received significant recognition in achieving two Charity Retail Association awards; retail staff member of the year and WOW interior of the year.

  • The charity brought together the two HEMS services under The Air Ambulance (TAAS) umbrella.
  • TAAS took over the Children’s Air Ambulance and promised to have the service flying by the end of 2012.
  • Registered with the Care Quality Commission as an independent provider.
  • G-HEMZ started service at DLRAA.
  • A fundraising trek to Kilimanjaro took place.
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  • 18,468Missions
  • 21Shop
  • 3TCAA Missions
Best Employers 2012

October saw the first flight for the Children’s Air Ambulance.

TAAS began to employ its own paramedics for HEMS helicopters.

  • The first recycling bank was placed in Northampton.
  • Landing Pad café opened in Daventry.
  • Began a shop partnership with Asda.
  • Fundraising trek to Machu Picchu.
  • At the Best Business Awards, TAAS won the Best Employer.
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  • 20,129Missions
  • 25Shops
  • 46TCAA Missions
First Transfer 2013

‘Octobash’ took place that celebrated WNAA’s 10th birthday.

The charity had an operational service expansion to WNAA, DLRAA and Children’s Air Ambulance. G-MEDX was the aircraft for DLRAA and G-HEMZ entered modification to start service as the Children’s Air Ambulance.

  • The first patient transfer by the Children’s Air Ambulance took place.
  • TAAS launched an online eBay store.
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  • 20,129Missions
  • 27Shops
  • 112TCAA Missions
A TCAA Milestone 2014

G-TAAS entered service as a new aircraft for DLRAA.

  • The service had its first event that took place at Lord Fink’s residence that provided the opportunity to raise awareness of the Children’s Air Ambulance.
  • 100 Children’s Air Ambulance transfers were completed and flew its first teenage patient.
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  • 24,381Missions
  • 31Shops
  • 172TCAA Missions
Recognition 2015

Launched the first Air Ambulance Week appeal in September

  • First TV advert went live on-air for the Children’s Air Ambulance.
  • Published ‘Flying to Save Young Lives’ paper that looked into future needs for emergency paediatric and neonatal transfer by helicopter.
  • WATCH (Wales & West Acute transport for Children) joined as the seventh clinical partner for the Children’s Air Ambulance.
  • Launched the night car service meaning that clinical HEMS lifesaving missions began running until 02:00, initially for two nights a week.
  • A rebrand to encompass the three services took place.
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  • 27,555Missions
  • 38Shops
  • 255TCAA Missions
A New Home 2016

Official contract for two new Children’s Air Ambulance helicopters was signed.

  • Launched in-house kerbside collections across Leicestershire
  • Volunteer campaign ‘a mission for a mission’ took place with many MP’s visiting volunteers in their local shops.
  • Children’s clinical partner teams increased to nine as two neonatal specialist teams joined: NEST and SONET
  • The first neonatal transfer was complete by Children’s Air Ambulance with the NEST team
  • Two new RRVs began service and the night car service extended to 7 days a week
  • Recycling team won Community Impact award at Charity Retail Awards.
  • Moved into new head office location in Rugby
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  • 34,077Missions
  • 50Shops
  • 336TCAA Missions
Royal Patron 2017

Trading achieved ISO accreditation.

  • Children’s Air Ambulance service was increased to seven days a week.
  • Welcomed the Duchess of York as a Patron to the Children’s Air Ambulance.
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  • 34,639Missions
  • 54Shops
  • 377TCAA Mission
15th Birthday 2018

The 15th Birthdays of WNAA was celebrated with the DLRAA’s 10th birthday also celebrated with an event at the Palace of Westminster.

  • Data wiping service was launched in conjunction with Blancco
  • Care Quality Commission inspection of all three TAAS services. Report praised TAAS as an organisation and its clinical services provided to patients.
  • Partnered with the National Forest to begin selling trees ahead of the first memorial tree planting that took place in November.
  • Expansion of the Children’s Air Ambulance service when two new helicopters were official handed over – the AgustaWestland 169 G-TCAA and G-PICU began service in September.
  • We opened two new airbases for the Children’s Air Ambulance in Doncaster and Oxford.
  • The first dual mission took place for the Children’s Air Ambulance.
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  • 38,572Missions
  • 55Shops
  • 500Missions
The Hanger 2019

Launched children’s fundraising club #TheCrew and the new Doncaster superstore opened.

  • Won Innovation & Technology in Charity Retailing at the Charity Retail Awards.
  • Opening of the charity’s first superstore, The Hanger in Alfreton, Derbyshire.
  • In-house clothes and plastic bag recycling began.
  • Opened the first toy collection bank in aid of the Children’s Air Ambulance.
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  • 41,982Missions
  • 55Shops
  • 583Missions
Milestones 2020

Reached 40,000 missions across our Warwickshire, Northamptonshire and Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland service.

  • ECMO and Nitric oxide equipment launched on Children’s Air Ambulance aircraft
  • Launched our online store selling new goods and merchandise
  • Gained ISO certifications 9001 and 14001
  • Launched our first children’s book, ‘Motorways in the Sky’
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  • 45,351Missions
  • 59Shops
  • 650Missions
New fleet 2021

2021 saw the launch of our brand new HEMS aircraft.

  • Reached over 1000 #TheCrew Members
  • Two more The Hanger Superstores opened nationwide
  • 11th CPT (KIDS) for Children’s Air Ambulance
  • New In Memory Tribute website launched
  • 500th patient transfer for TCAA
  • 200th mission milestone with Embrace
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  • 48,500Missions
  • 60Shops
  • 679Missions
Aircraft launch 2022

2022 saw the launch of our brand new TCAA aircraft G-PICU at our Oxford airbase.

  • HEMS launch blood on board programme for patients
  • New chair Prof Bob Allison is appointed
  • TAAS volunteers honoured as part of Jubilee
  • TCAA partners with Doncaster Pride
  • TAAS teams up with Police to tackle knife crime
  • HEMS crews run 45miles base-to-base for cause
  • TCAA launches Bristol Fashion Show
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  • 20WNAA
  • 15DLRAA
  • 10TCAA
Our anniversaries 2023

Reached 50,000 missions across our Warwickshire, Northamptonshire and Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland service. Celebrated the anniversaries of all of our lifesaving services.

  • WNAA celebrates 20 years of saving lives
  • DLRAA celebrates 15 years of saving lives
  • TCAA celebrates 10 years of saving lives
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