WEYMOUTH Ambulance Station opened its doors to the public for first time at a fun event with a serious message.

South Western Ambulance Service Trust held its first ever open day at the Mount Pleasant Business Park station.

Residents of all ages were given the opportunity to witness first hand the important work of paramedics, volunteers and ambulance service staff. Guests were invited aboard a real-life ambulance and children in particular enjoyed seeing how the sirens and blue lights work.

There was also a rare opportunity for visitors to brush up on healthcare awareness and skills - such as CPR - from the front line lifesavers.

Keeping the crowds entertained throughout the afternoon were stalls with an ambulance-themed twist on fairground favourites, including 'soak the paramedic', and 'hook a truck'.

Residents could also chat with medical staff and volunteers about what it's like to work for the ambulance service.

Anne-Marie Bryant, emergency care assistant at the Weymouth station was one of the organisers of the event, along with colleague Jeff Jones, who is acting deputy commander for Dorset.

She said: "It was brilliant - we weren't expecting such a big turnout at our first event.

"We had some excellent displays including the search and rescue dogs - next year we hope to hold an even bigger open day.

"I'd like to say huge 'thank you' to everyone who donated raffle prizes as well as to New Look for letting us use their car park."

Rebecca Wootton, a paramedic with the Weymouth ambulance service, was stationed at the 'hook a truck' stand. "It was really good, I think the event was really well received by the community", she said.

"Loads of families came along and people seemed to be enjoying a fun day out, as well as children being able to learn first hand about the work of the ambulance service".

Representatives from other emergency services were also on hand to answer any questions, along with their specialist vehicles.

The event raised £600 for the South Western Ambulance Charity as well as Dorset Mind.


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