FOUR and a half years ago horse rider Suzanna Hext, 28, suffered life-changing injuries in a fall.

Wiltshire Air Ambulance came to her aid at Marston Meysey and the speedy response of the helicopter ensured she was at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, quickly to receive specialist care.

Suzanna suffered a spinal injury, head injury, and broke her back, pelvis, and shoulder, during the fall on July 26, 2012, and was in hospital for over 177 days.

She was completely wheelchair bound for two years but can now use crutches as well as her wheelchair. She undergoes regular physiotherapy at the Injured Jockeys Fund Rehabilitation Centre at Oaksey House, Lambourn, and the Oxford Centre for Enablement.

Before the accident Suzanna was competing in Eventing at 2 star (International) level as an amateur. She started riding again in July 2014 and competes at an advanced level in para and able-bodied dressage competitions.

She has won two national para dressage titles, won at para international level, competed at Prix St George (high level able-bodied dressage test), was long-listed for the Rio Paralympics and she has also been selected onto the National Lottery World Class Programme.

Her goal is to be selected to compete for Great Britain in the Tokyo Paralympics in 2020.

Suzanna works in the pharmacy at B&W Equine Vets at Breadstone, Gloucestershire.

Recalling her accident Suzanna, who lives near Sherston, near Malmesbury, said: “Because of the severity of my injuries I needed the quickest response and Wiltshire Air Ambulance provided that.

"I can remember saying to the crew that I couldn’t feel my legs or move them. The crew were so calm and reassuring.

"They assessed my injuries before flying me to hospital. If they hadn’t got me to hospital quickly, the outcome could have been different.”

Suzanna is a volunteer with Wiltshire Air Ambulance and is backing the charity’s airbase appeal.

She said: “Wiltshire Air Ambulance is a vital service that we couldn’t do without, especially in rural locations, such as where I had my horse riding accident.

"Its new airbase at Semington will still enable the helicopter to reach all parts of Wiltshire in 11 minutes, as it currently does from its base in Devizes.

“I’m so proud to be a volunteer with Wiltshire Air Ambulance, helping to spread the word about the lifesaving work it does.

"It is a charity and the fundraising and administrative team work so hard to keep the donations coming in to enable the helicopter to keep flying and saving lives. Now they need the public’s help to raise the funds needed for the new airbase.”

To donate to the Airbase Appeal and how to get involved go to or email or call the charity team on 01380 739453.