Last month we had the very disappointing news that the Chief Ambulance Commissioner for Wales has recommended the closure of Welshpool and Caernarfon’s Air Ambulance bases, in favour of a new base at Rhuddlan to serve Mid & North Wales, writes Craig Williams MP.

Welshpool’s base is a vital lifeline for communities across Mid Wales, especially given the rural nature of our area.

The level of support and donations which the service has received from Montgomeryshire residents over the decades – as well as the uproar which this review has caused over the last 18 months, demonstrates just how important it is to so many of us.

Ever since the plans to close Welshpool’s base were haphazardly leaked out in August 2022, the ensuing consultation process has been shambolic.


A final decision was expected to be made by the Emergency Ambulance Services Committee last Thursday, but we are told this will now be taken by a new committee sometime this month!

In my view, the case to close our base has always been, and remains incredibly weak.

Indeed, the Commissioner’s own report actually shows data that within an air-time of 30 minutes, Welshpool’s base covers 40% of Wales’ population, whereas a new base in Rhuddlan would only cover 25%!

Alongside Russell George MS, we will continue to fight these plans hard with local campaigners over the coming weeks and months.

In Westminster, I listened to the Chancellor’s Budget in March, where he unveiled a number of measures which will directly benefit working families.

From this month, National Insurance has been cut from 12% to 8%, giving workers an average saving of £900 per year. The National Living Wage also goes up by 9.8% to £11.44 an hour, benefitting a full-time employee on minimum wage by £1,800 a year.

From next week, State Pensions are also rising by 8.5%, totalling £900 a year. This follows a previous rise of 10.1% this year – well above inflation.

Maintaining the triple-lock on pensions has meant that state pensions have gone up by over £3,700 since 2010.

Our plan to strengthen our economy is working. Over the last 12 months, inflation has fallen from 11.1% to 3.4%; the economy performed better than forecasted; wages are rising; mortgage rates are starting to come down; and debt is on track to fall as a share of the economy.