AIR ambulance supporter Paul Franklin has received a major award for his fundraising for the organisation which saved his life.

Paul, 41, from Knutsford, was a spectator at a motorbike rally in Scarborough in September 2017 when one of the competitors accidentally ploughed into him at 60mph after the brakes failed on his motorbike.

Paul was airlifted to James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough by the Yorkshire Air Ambulance, where it was revealed he had fractured his fibula and damaged his liver, kidney and spleen.

He also had a deep wound to his abdomen, a cut to the back of the head and a collapsed lung and 11 broken ribs, which meant he couldn’t breathe.

He said: “When I came round I couldn’t breathe and I thought, this is it. I started thinking about my wife and daughter, and it was them who gave me the determination to live.”

In his younger years Paul was a marathon runner, and doctors told him his love of fitness probably saved his life.

He added: “Doctors said to me that if I was a little bit younger or older, and if I wasn’t in such good health, I wouldn’t be here today.”

On September 1, 2018, just under a year after his accident and while still receiving physio for a number of his injuries, Paul walked the Yorkshire Three Peaks to raise funds for the crew who gave him the vital initial treatment that saved his life, and raised £16,407 for the charity.

In recognition of his fundraising efforts Paul received an Individual Supporter Award at the annual Yorkshire Air Ambulance Recognition Awards.

Lin Stead, North Yorkshire regional fundraiser, said: “We are delighted to be able to recognise Paul’s fundraising efforts with the Individual Supporter Award and we’re truly grateful for his support and dedication to the YAA.”

The Yorkshire Air Ambulance held its annual Recognition Awards at Oulton Hall in Leeds, celebrating those who have dedicated their time to raise money for the charity.

A judging panel handpicked the finalists from the volunteers, businesses and fundraisers who have worked for the charity, and Jon Mitchell and Gaynor Barnes from ITV Calendar, and who are also patrons of the charity, compered and hosted the awards.

YAA is an independent charity which needs to raise £12,000 per day to keep both of Yorkshire’s air ambulances in the air and maintained. This is equivalent to £4.4 million each year.