Published: 03 November 2023

A young farmer who was given critical care following a crash has raised £9,000 to thank the Charity that helped save his life.

Calfyn Jones, 24, from Dihewyd, Aberaeron, organised a classic car and tractor convoy event followed by a charity auction, with the help of his girlfriend Erin Thomas and their families.

The event raised £9,000 which was split between the Wales Air Ambulance and the High Dependency Neuroscience Ward at the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff.

The two organisations delivered lifesaving care to Calfyn when he suffered a traumatic brain injury, following an accident on 6 February 2022.

Two air ambulances came to Calfyn’s aid, and he was airlifted to hospital in Cardiff where he spent the next 17 days recovering.

Calfyn’s mum, Anwen Jones, said: “He wanted to do something to say thank you to the Wales Air Ambulance crew that helped him and the hospital who helped with his recovery.

“Calfyn was really lucky. Thanks to Wales Air Ambulance, he had critical care on the side of the road, which I believe helped him to make a full recovery. We will be forever grateful for the help and support he received.”

The event was held at Dihewyd Village Hall and the local community rallied around to provide donations for the auction. There were also food stalls and entertainment available, making it a fun family day out.

Calfyn, who works as an agricultural contractor and steel fabricator, has had an interest in classic cars and tractor events for years and knew it would be a good way to raise money.

He posted adverts on Facebook and in the local community and was overwhelmed by the support.

He said: “When I was recovering from my accident, I decided I wanted to put on an event and do something to help the Wales Air Ambulance. I have taken part in tractor runs before and it is something I enjoy, and we also extended it to classic cars. I couldn’t believe the positive response, everyone came together to help out.

“We had 45 tractors and about 60 cars and had volunteers from the community watching the roads and helping traffic flow. I don’t think our small village has seen anything like it before!

“It was the first event I have ever organised, and everybody was so kind in giving up their time and donating auction prizes, from hampers, restaurant vouchers, MOT’s, cakes and so on. There was something for everyone.

“I was totally surprised to raise £9,000 for the Charity, I couldn’t believe it when we were totalling everything up. We may be small villages around here, but everyone comes together to support each other.”

Speaking about his accident, Calfyn said he was incredibly grateful for everyone who helped him and despite a slow and steady recovery, he is now making the most out of life.

He said: “I have always supported the Wales Air Ambulance, it is a lifeline especially for farmers in rural communities. It is charity very close to my heart and it forever will be. If it wasn’t for them, I wouldn’t be here today.

“I have been given a second chance and am thankful I am able to put on events like this and raise money for the Charity as it could have been a lot different.”

Calfyn is already planning another event next spring.

The air ambulance service in Wales is delivered via a unique Third Sector and Public Sector partnership. The Wales Air Ambulance Charity relies on public donations to raise the £11.2 million required every year to keep the helicopters in the air and rapid response vehicles on the road.

The Emergency Medical Retrieval and Transfer Service (EMRTS) supplies highly skilled NHS consultants and critical care practitioners who work on board the Charity’s vehicles.