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Somerset’s St John Ambulance volunteers welcome a new support vehicle

St John Ambulance volunteers from all over Somerset celebrated the delivery of a new support vehicle, this week.

The van – which is being looked after by the charity’s Wells Unit – can transport people and equipment; it’s one of more than 50 vehicles secured thanks to a capital grant to the Order of St John by the Mark Master Masons through their Mark Benevolent Fund.

A donation of over £3 million is providing new ambulances, treatment centres and support vehicles to St John Ambulance – the nation’s leading first aid charity and the Order’s operational arm.

Vehicles are being handed over in England, Wales, Northern Ireland, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands.

And the charity’s Bridgwater HQ was the scene of the latest unveiling, with a dedication ceremony conducted by the Order’s County Chaplain, Canon Ian Gibson on Thursday evening (April 25).

The new vehicle will be used by volunteers to help them deliver first aid to members of the public at events across the county and further afield.

John Morgan, Provincial Grand Master at the Mark Master Masons in Somerset, said: “We’re proud to have a longstanding relationship with St John, and the donation of 52 state of the art ambulances and support vehicles marks the 140th anniversary of St John Ambulance and 150 years of the Mark Benevolent Fund.

“As a result of this donation, local communities will continue to benefit from the services of St John Ambulance and we, in the Mark Province of Somerset, are honoured to present this vehicle.”

The handover event was also attended by St John Ambulance volunteers and Masons from as far afield as Minehead, Portishead, Wellington, Wells and Seavington, covering all points of Somerset’s compass.

John Roberts, chair of St John’s Somerset County Priory Group (CPG), said: “The donation of this vehicle is wonderful news for the county; it will significantly help enhance patient care and contribute to more lives saved locally.

“We’re immensely grateful to the Mark Master Masons and to the Mark Benevolent Fund for their generosity and we look forward to seeing the positive use made by local St John Ambulance volunteers of the vehicle in the future as they continue the charity’s life saving mission.”

For more information about the Mark Master Masons and the Mark Benevolent Fund, visit
Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons and Mark Fund of Benevolence

For more information about St John Ambulance, visit
www.sja.org.uk and to learn more about the Order of St John in England, visit www.stjohnengland.org.uk

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