COUNCILLORS have unanimously agreed to back Wiltshire Air Ambulance in its efforts to recover costs from the government relating to its response to the Novichok poisonings in 2018.

At a recent full council meeting councillors recognised the outstanding work of emergency, Armed Forces and other services including the Wiltshire Air Ambulance (WAA) in responding to the Novichok attack in Salisbury and Amesbury in 2018.

Wiltshire Air Ambulance says it incurred more than £100,000 in costs and has yet to receive compensation from the government.

READ: Wiltshire Air Ambulance waiting for Novichok compensation>>>

A motion put forward by Councillor Brian Dalton, who represents the Harnham ward, was supported by all members following amendments proposed by the leader of the council, Councillor Philip Whitehead.

Cllr Dalton said: “I’m very happy that the council, after a good debate, accepted my motion to continue to support Wiltshire Air Ambulance as it seeks to receive compensation from government. The emergency services who lost equipment were given funding, but Wiltshire Air Ambulance, which is a charity, are still waiting. I hope this comes to a successful ending for Wiltshire Air Ambulance.”

The council agreed to meet again with the leadership of Wiltshire Air Ambulance to formulate a campaign and make further representations directly to government to recover the costs.

It also agreed to work with Wiltshire MPs to support the campaign for fair treatment of Wiltshire Air Ambulance.

Cllr Whitehead said: “The Wiltshire Air Ambulance is a precious resource which plays a crucial role in responding to emergency events in Wiltshire. This was an important motion which was supported by all councillors at the meeting.”

Wiltshire Air Ambulance chief executive David Philpott said: “Wiltshire Council have been extremely supportive to our charity throughout the last two year, whilst leading on the compensation claim from the Novichok incidents, and we are extremely grateful for all their support.

"We were really pleased to hear that the motion put forward by Cllr Brian Dolton to full council was unanimously agreed, and that Wiltshire Council will continue to make representations directly to government, along with support by our local  MPs to recover the costs on behalf of Wiltshire Air Ambulance."

He added: "We will continue to work closely with Philip Whitehead, leader of Wiltshire Council, to hopefully resolve this matter with a successful ending for Wiltshire Air Ambulance.”