Former patient Richard Hoare came up to the base last week with his friends John Leach, Mark Wilde, Ian Russell and Keith Wilson to present the air crew with a giant cheque for £9,000, the accumulation of fundraising from several endurance events over the last year.

In a surprise turn of events, the Camberley Rugby Crew also presented the air crew with a new TV for the base for when they have much needed downtime between shifts.

Richard received life-saving assistance from Thames Valley Air Ambulance after the motorbike he was riding was hit by a Nissan 4×4 in Burfield, Berkshire in July 2013.

The father of two was thrown from his bike and knocked unconscious, with serious multiple fractures to his pelvis, open fractures to his arms, a broken shoulder and tears to his spleen. Fortunately for Richard, the motorist following him was an osteopath who gave him life-saving roadside resuscitation.

After being airlifted, Richard spent five weeks in John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxfordshire, where he underwent four operations to pin his broken bones. He finally returned to work after six months of gruelling rehabilitation.

Tracey Alden the paramedic who was on duty that day remembered Richards accident clearly and was so pleased to see him doing so well. She said: “It was such a shock when the guys carried the new TV in! I just couldn’t believe that they had been so thoughtful. Our old TV was on its last legs and this will really help us with our down time between operations.”

Richard added: “We had such an amazing day, we all really enjoyed it, and are so pleased to have been able to do something for the crew as well, we hope will make a difference for them.”

Kate Martin Supporter Fundraising Manager: “This was such a fun base visit as Richard had asked me a while ago what the crew would like and hinted that they needed a new TV, I didn’t actually think they would go out and buy a brand new one! The guys at Camberley Rugby Club have been so supportive and we really appreciate everything they have done for us this year!”

In February the men took up cycling to get fit for the London to Brighton and London to Paris summer rides, preparation events for the big one – Mount Kilimanjaro in January.

Richard says: “Since the accident, this has become a personal challenge to push myself to get fitter, lose weight and give something back to the air ambulance service. Without them I probably wouldn’t be here.

“This fundraising challenge has changed my life and those of us involved – there’s a growing group of about 20 guys in the rugby club who go out on Saturday for a cycle ride. It’s created a really good legacy and we’re all now really into our fitness.”