Warning over leaflet campaign

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RESIDENTS have been warned about a new leaflet campaign sweeping the area.

Households across the county, including Bury St Edmunds, have received the flyers from organisations claiming to represent the ‘Air Ambulance Service’.

They say unwanted items are urgently needed for them to ‘financially assist to cover or reduce the cost of ground air ambulance medical transportation for patients caught in difficult medical circumstances’.

However, Suffolk Trading Standards has issued a warning following concerns from residents that the organisation could be trying to take money from the East Anglian Air Ambulance.

Nigel Howlett, senior fair trading officer, said: “We’ve had a number of concerned residents from across the county call us to say they’ve had these leaflets through their door and are worried that someone is trying to make money off the back of a well respected charity.

“The leaflets are very confusing as people picking them up may automatically think they are donating to the East Anglian Air Ambulance. They are not.

“In fact, in the small print it says they are not associated to any local helicopter emergency medical service, but very few people are likely to read this information.”

He noted that the major giveaway is that the website publicised on the leaflets does not work.

Steve Whitby, deputy chief executive of the East Anglian Air Ambulance, said: “It’s a real shame to hear that organisations are trying to cash in on people’s generosity and leave a charity without the funds it needs to continue saving lives around the East of England.

“We operate a number of fundraising initiatives across the four counties we cover and I’d just like to remind people that anything from us would be clearly branded.”