The Armed Forces Day flag is flying at the Magpas Air Ambulance base
The Armed Forces Day flag is flying at the Magpas Air Ambulance base

This Armed Forces Day (Saturday, 29 June), and in the week leading up to the event, individuals and organisations across the country have been showing their support for Armed Forces personnel and thanking them for all they do.

Magpas Air Ambulance—the lifesaving air ambulance charity based in Cambridgeshire—has many ties to the Armed Forces, with clinicians, aviation staff and even their trustee board having careers in the Armed Forces or connections to the services, while also being an integral part of the Magpas Air Ambulance team.

In the past few years, Magpas Air Ambulance has made a series of pledges and worked for accreditations to demonstrate the charity’s support for their colleagues in the forces; including signing the Armed Forces Covenant in 2021. The charity was also awarded the Gold Award in the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme last year—for organisations that pledge, demonstrate and advocate support to the Armed Forces community, and align their values with the Armed Forces Covenant. This is the highest accolade in the scheme and Magpas Air Ambulance was the first air ambulance charity in the UK to receive it.

The Armed Forces Covenant represents a promise to those who serve or have served, and their families, are supported and treated fairly—not just this Armed Forces Day, but every day.

Magpas Air Ambulance’s Chief Executive Daryl Brown MBE DL, who is also Honorary Commander for the US Air Force, 423rd Medical Squadron of the 501st Combat Support Wing, summarises, “Magpas Air Ambulance has a really strong relationship with the armed forces, with a number of our founding doctors coming from army and RAF backgrounds. For over 50 years, this partnership has thrived with Magpas Air Ambulance continuing to work with many current or former service personnel, including doctors, paramedics and flight crew. We are committed to supporting each and every one of them, not just this Armed Forces Day, but every day.

“As well as signing the Armed Forces Covenant and working with the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme, we also have a partnership with our local medical reserve force (254 medical regiment), and are proud to have a reservist policy—which has been developed in consultation with our Armed Forces personnel. We also work closely with the US Air Force bases and international forces located in our region. We hope all of this supports our current workforce and will encourage other members of the forces to join this 24/7 lifesaving service.”

The Magpas Air Ambulance team will also be celebrating the contributions of the Armed Forces at Whittlesey's very first Armed Forces Day celebrations this weekend, as well as sharing experiences from a number of the charity's team members on social media throughout the past week.