Corby and Kettering Scouts' aluminium can collection boosts life-saving work

Each helipad needs 80 tonnes of aluminium - about 5.7 million cans

By Alison Bagley
Tuesday, 19th October 2021, 4:41 am

Kettering and Corby's Scouts have joined forces with community first responders - not only to help save the planet but to save lives by providing the raw materials for a much-needed hospital helipad.

Glendon District Scout groups have been collecting aluminium cans to support frontline health volunteers North Northants First Responders' appeal to build a helipad to be used by air ambulances.

North Northants First Responders, who work alongside East Midlands Ambulance Service answering 999 calls, have been collecting the cans to help charity Helipads For Hospitals.

Glendon District Scouts have been supporting the North Northants Community Responders collecting the aluminium cans for Helipads for Hospitals

Responders have been collecting cans helped by the community including Corby Primary Academy and Park Junior Academy in Kettering Helipads for Hospitals founder and eco-warrior John Nowell said: "Every week 50 million cans are thrown away in the UK - over half of those are not recycled. We need 80 tonnes of unwanted aluminium drinking cans to build a helipad so the air ambulance can land at night.

"I would urge people to collect the cans. Recycling is so important. Thank you very much to everyone, we really appreciate what you are doing."

The campaign's aim is to collect 80 tonnes of unwanted aluminium drinking cans to use the raw material that will be smelted down to form an alloy strong enough to build a helipad on site at hospitals.

The first hospital that they are raising money for is Leicester Royal Infirmary where currently the air ambulance has to land in a nearby park using a land ambulance for the final mile to A&E - losing valuable life-saving time.

The cans collected need to be crushed to reduce their volume

Several thousand cans were handed over on Saturday by Scouts who have been washing and crushing the drinks cans to maximise the storage space.

Community First Responder Richard Clarke is also the Glendon District Explorer Scout Commissioner and has been working to collect as many cans as possible.

He said: "We are pleased to help this joint venture. As community first responders we work with the air ambulance - it is a vital service and it would be nice if it was 24-hours."

The Scouts are hoping to be able to secure permission for a aluminium can collection point at the Woodcroft in London Road, Kettering.

John Nowell from Helipads for Hospitals accepts the cans from the Glendon District Scout group members

Richard added: "We shall carry on with this campaign. "

Scout with 15th Kettering Avondale Group, 13-year-old Lee, said: "It will be great to see the cans being made into the helipad rather than going into landfill."

To arrange collection of washed, crushed cans email [email protected] or call 07944 698262.