Determined boy’s rescue story inspires fundraising effort for the air ambulance

Volunteer Heather Burton, Louise Harris, Mark Halliday, Eden Skipworth, Ruud McAllister, Michael Gilham, Jo Gilham, Rachel Gilham, Jonathan Gilham, Jenny McAllister and volunteer Richard Durham.
Volunteer Heather Burton, Louise Harris, Mark Halliday, Eden Skipworth, Ruud McAllister, Michael Gilham, Jo Gilham, Rachel Gilham, Jonathan Gilham, Jenny McAllister and volunteer Richard Durham.

A Northampton sports club member was moved to spearhead a fundraising campaign for the Warwickshire and Northamptonshire Air Ambulance after the service rescued a young footballer involved in a road accident.

In August 2013, Michael Gilham, who was 12 at the time, was hit by a taxi near St James Working Men’s Club in Weedon Road, Northampton, and suffered serious leg injuries and a fractured collar bone.

The youngster had been a keen footballer and the injuries looked likely to put his football days in jeopardy.

A crew from the air ambulance flew to the scene and treated him, before flying him to Birmingham Children’s Hospital.

Two years on and Michael - who Northampton-based air ambulance volunteer support group leader Heather Burton said has had “spirit and sheer determination”, is not only walking but winning top trophies in football again.

Inspired by what had happened to Michael, Brampton Heath Golf Club’s past captain Mark Halliday chose the air ambulance as his charity of the year - and the golf club raised £4,800, which was presented to Heather and fellow air ambulance volunteer Richard Durham on Sunday.

Heather said: “Anyone meeting Michael can see what a determined and amazing young man he is and it was so good to see what a fantastic recovery he has made. We would like to thank Michael and his family and everyone at the golf club for the fantastic fundraising efforts they have made - enough to fund just under three rescue missions.