THE Yorkshire Air Ambulance charity has a new chief executive.
Martin Eede has moved north from Kent to take over the crucial role of keeping the helicopter in the air.
Mr Eede, 56, who has a wealth of fundraising experience, will lead the charity, which must raise £1.4m each year to keep the helicopter airborne.
He has already unveiled a number of money-spinning schemes to secure the long-term future of the charity - and has appealed to the people of Yorkshire for their continued support.
Mr Eede said: "The people I have met have been so incredibly supportive of the air ambulance. With their goodwill I believe we will succeed.
"We need to increase our operational capacity and we want to offer coverage from 6am until later at night, as opposed to during daylight hours only - but this costs money."
Mr Eede was a PE teacher in Cheltenham for 14 years before a road accident forced him to retire.
In 1983 he secured his first post in the voluntary sector as a director of Special Olympics UK, which offers sporting opportunities for children with learning disabilities.
He then became the chief executive of the Terrence Higgins Trust, the UK's leading HIV and AIDS charity, before joining the National Schizophrenia Fellowship - now called Rethink - which aims to help people affected by mental illness.
The charity's turnover increased from £1m to £10m during the four years he was its chief executive.
Mr Eede was invited to work in Whitehall as part of a mental health taskforce.
Mr Eede, who has six children and five grandchildren, said: "The Yorkshire Air Ambulance has more potential than any others I have worked for.
"We are going to launch a Friends of Yorkshire Air Ambulance, to give supporters a greater involvement in the charity.
"This will include trips to meet paramedics and see the helicopter at Leeds/Bradford Airport.
"For a month leading up to our fourth birthday in October we will be holding Tea For Two Million, when we will be encouraging people to hold a tea party.
"We will also be running a legacy campaign," said Mr Eede.
Volunteers are being sought to help fundraising. Anyone interested should phone the charity on 0845 1206060.