Somerset show caves dive in to help lifesaving children’s charity
Somerset’s Wookey Hole named the lifesaving national Children’s Air Ambulance (TCAA) their first official Charity of the Year.
The Children’s Air Ambulance is a national service, changing the face of paediatric and neonatal care through the high-speed transfer of critically ill babies and children – flying them from one hospital to another for specialist care via the clinically designed helicopters which provide a flying intensive care unit for babies and children.
The charity works with 11 NHS Clinical Partner Teams across the UK including Bristol’s Newborn Emergency Stabilisation and Transfer (NEST), and Wales and West Acute Transport for Children Service (WATCh), and the support from local businesses like Wookey Hole is vital in raising the £3,500 needed for each transfer mission.
Wookey Hole – an independently owned, family-run business – takes pride in actively supporting the local community and charities. Each year Wookey Hole supports hundreds of organisations that are fundraising in the local community.
The major Southwest tourist attraction has made TCAA its Charity of the Year with the dedicated team pledging to try and raise a minimum of £5,000 over the year.
“Visitors to Wookey Hole enjoy an experience millions of years in the making. There is plenty for them to do inside and out, from vintage penny arcades to museums, adventure golf, and soft play zones, to name but a few of the attractions. Not forgetting the breathtakingly beautiful caves, for which Wookey Hole is renowned,” said Wookey Hole’s Karen Brixey-Watts.
“Many visitors choose to make a wish at the site of the springs worshipped by the Romans, and it is coins collected from this wishing pool that will be donated to the Children’s Air Ambulance over the next year. Every wish will help save a life,” she added.
So far, the team at Wookey Hole have donated over £2,045 from the wishing pool and have set up many other initiatives to help raise as much money for the worthy charity – including stations with QR codes placed around the site, collection tins and options for the public to add a donation to their food or hotel bill.
“The support through this great and unique partnership is so important to our charity as we receive no government funding and rely solely on generous donations like these to remain operational,” explained TCAA Community Fundraising Executive, Fiona Franklin.
“Wookey Hole is a magical place of caves, legends, and adventure – a wonderful place for everyone. On behalf of the charity, I’d like to say a huge thank you to the brilliant team there for their integral support which will help to save more young lives,” she added.
Whilst adopting the Children’s Air Ambulance as a focal point for staff and guest fundraising, Wookey Hole will also continue to support local charities. For more information about Wookey Hole show caves and visiting the great attraction, visit www.wookey.co.uk
The charity is celebrating its 10th anniversary of lifesaving high-speed transfers in 2023. To help mark the momentous milestone the charity is asking for supporters to send in any photos, footage or clippings, or share their stories to help showcase how well the children’s service has developed over the years into the pioneering transfer service it is today. To get involved please call 0300 3047 999.