Trustees of Wiltshire Air Ambulance have launched a full-scale search for a new air base for its own helicopter.
The air ambulance charity’s 23-year partnership with Wiltshire Police joint helicopter ends later this year as the force is joining a new national police air service based at Filton near Bristol.
From December, Wiltshire Air Ambulance will begin flying its own helicopter and while it would like to stay at the Wiltshire Police’s hangar in London Road, Devizes, the trustees are searching for a location for a permanent airbase.
The charity’s chief executive, David Philpott, said: “For more than 20 years we have enjoyed sharing the hangar behind police headquarters in Devizes with our law enforcement colleagues, but things move on and times change.”
He said discussions were still going on with the Police and Crime Commissioner for an extension on the tenure, but issues of health, safety and possible security risks meant it was unlikely and against this background a new airbase was being sought in central Wiltshire.
The charity has set up a project team and has identified up to a dozen commercial, military or private airfields or landing strips within seven nautical miles of Devizes.
It is keen to stress it is not limiting the search to aviation-type properties as other air ambulances have sites on industrial estates or farmland and subject to planning, the organisation is not ruling out any potential location.
Anyone with property or land that they think might be suitable can contact the charity directly by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org