Leyburn Auction Mart recognised for air ambulance support

Leyburn Auction Mart has been recognised for its support of the Yorkshire Air Ambulance

The mart was one of several North Yorkshire businesses and fundraisers praised at the recent annual Yorkshire Air Ambulance Recognition Awards evening.

The charity held the event at Oulton Hall in Leeds last month to celebrate the Yorkshire businesses and fundraisers from across the region, who have dedicated their time to raise money for the charity.

A judging panel handpicked the finalists from the volunteers, businesses and fundraisers who have worked tirelessly for the charity, and Jon Mitchell and Gaynor Barnes from ITV Calendar, and who are also patrons of the charity, compered and hosted the awards.

The winners were:

Corporate Supporter Award – Leyburn Auction Mart Market

Rachael Simpson and Debbie Scott collected the Corporate Award on behalf of Leyburn Auction Mart. They have raised a total of over £14,500 for the Yorkshire Air Ambulance in recent years and in 2018, they raised a further £8,750 from the Celebratory Centenary Golf Open Day, where proceeds were divided between Yorkshire and the Great North Air Ambulance Service. Other fundraising activities included: a calf sale, stock judging and a sheep shearing competition, an auction of promises and an annual dinner where the YAA received £900 from the raffle.

The adventurous and daring duo – Rachael and Debbie also raised £3590.20 by doing the YAA 10,000ft Sky Dive at Bridlington of YAA.

North Yorkshire Volunteer of the Year – Margaret Potter

Margaret Potter from Harrogate was awarded the North Yorkshire Volunteer of the Year Recognition Award. Since joining YAA in 2016, Margaret has built up her collection tin round and has become well known in the local communities of Pateley Bridge and Hampsthwaite. Margaret has always put the charity first, even giving up her time on New Year’s Day to attend an annual Tug of War Competition. To inspire help the next generation to consider volunteering, Margaret also attends readings at local primary schools.

Community Group Award – Rotary Club of Harrogate Brigantes and Scarborough Light Parade

 Rotary Club of Harrogate Brigantes were awarded the first Community Group Award of the evening. They have been loyal supporters of the Yorkshire Air Ambulance for over nine years and have raised an impressive £22,790 for the charity through various fundraising activities such as last year’s Santa’s Grotto at Asda Harrogate.

The second Community Group Award was handed to John Bates and Janet Houseman, organisers of the Scarborough Goldwing Light Parade.

The Honda Goldwing Light Parade, held every September,  is a must-visit event in the Scarborough calendar, consisting of illuminated Goldwing bikes parading along the Scarborough front with riders wearing fancy dress.

In little over two years, the event has raised over £30,000 for the Yorkshire Air Ambulance, £11,000 of which was raised in 2019.

Individual Support Award –Caroline Shepherd

 The Individual Supporter Award for North Yorkshire went to Caroline Shepherd. Caroline was air lifted in January 2018 from Crompton near Pickering while out riding after she suffered from a brain aneurysm whilst on her horse. Both helicopters were dispatched to attend Caroline and the crew took Caroline to James Cook University Hospital for treatment.

Whilst Caroline was on the mend, she organised a successful event to raise money for the YAA to say thank you for saving her life, initially hoping to raise £3,000 for one helicopter flight. The evening exceeded all expectations and raised £7,000 – which covered the cost of both helicopter missions.  Caroline later became a volunteer and has been attending events with the East Yorkshire fundraising team.

Patient Fundraising Ambassador – Michelle Raine

Former Yorkshire Air Ambulance patient, Michelle Raine was honoured with the Patient Fundraising Ambassador award for the North Region.

After rolling down a hill and being trapped under a tractor in 2017, Michelle was unsurprisingly badly injured and broke her pelvis in five places.  She was flown immediately to Leeds General Infirmary, where she underwent major surgery. During her recovery, Michelle also suffered from a collapsed lung and pneumonia.

During this time, Michelle set her mind on raising the £12,000 needed to keep the 2 helicopters flying above Yorkshire for 1 day.  She organised a big fundraising dinner which was held in Nov 2018.  Within days of announcing the event, tickets were sold out and it was a fantastic evening.  Michelle with the help of her family and friends exceeded her target and raised over £15,000 on the evening.

Helen Caeller, North and East Yorkshire Director of Fundraising, said: “We are delighted to be able to recognise some of the fundraising successes across our region and give back to the people who have worked tirelessly to support the Yorkshire Air Ambulance over the years.  We would like to thank everyone for their generosity and continued support.”