North West Ambulance Service

Last updated
North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust
Type NHS trust
Established1 July 2006
Headquarters Bolton [1]
Region served Greater Manchester, Cheshire Merseyside, Cumbria, Lancashire and part of the High Peak district of Derbyshire
Area size5,400 sq. miles
Population7.5 million
Budget£310 million (Approx)
ChairPeter White
Chief executiveDaren Mochrie
Staff5,912 (2018/19) [2]
Website OOjs UI icon edit-ltr-progressive.svg

The North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust (NWAS) is the ambulance service for North West England. It is one of ten ambulance trusts providing England with Emergency medical services, and is part of the National Health Service, receiving direct government funding for its role.


NWAS was formed on 1 July 2006, following the merger of four previous services (Cumbria Ambulance Service; Lancashire Ambulance Service; Cheshire and Mersey Ambulance Service; and Greater Manchester Ambulance Service) as part of Health Minister Lord Warner's plans to combine ambulance services. [3]

Based in Bolton, the trust provides services to almost 7 million people in Greater Manchester, Cheshire, Merseyside, Lancashire, Cumbria, and the North Western fringes of the High Peak district of Derbyshire (covering the towns of Glossop and Hadfield) in an area of 5,500 square miles (14,000 km2). NWAS provides emergency ambulance response via the 999 system, as well as operating the NHS 111 advice service for North West England.

They also operate non-emergency patient transport services (PTS) for part of the region, and in 2013/2014 carried out 1.2 million such journeys. Since 2016, the PTS in Cheshire, Warrington and Wirral has instead been carried out by West Midlands Ambulance Service. [4]


NWAS ambulance on an emergency call in 2009 NW-ambo.jpg
NWAS ambulance on an emergency call in 2009
Skoda Octavia response car in 2017 Ambulance (34736058975) (cropped).jpg
Skoda Octavia response car in 2017

NWAS utilise a mixed fleet of emergency and patient transport ambulances. The trust uses rapid response cars, and since 2017 have begun using BMW i3 electric cars [5] In Central Manchester, some paramedics respond on specially converted bicycles.

Locations and structure

The trust currently operates from 104 ambulance stations across the North West. [6] The most northerly station is at Carlisle, and the furthest south is at Crewe. It also maintains three Emergency Operations Centres (EOCs) for the handling of 999 calls and dispatch of emergency ambulances.

In 2017, NWAS signed an agreement to purchase a new EOC and area office for £2.9 million at Liverpool International Business Park next to Liverpool John Lennon Airport [7] As of 2019, this building has been converted and services have now migrated from the Anfield site.

Over recent years, the trust has combined many of their older ambulance stations into purpose-built facilities shared with other emergency services, including Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue, Lancashire Fire and Rescue and Greater Manchester Police. [8] [9]


NWAS was the first ambulance trust to be inspected by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), in August 2014. The CQC found the trust provided safe and effective services which were well-led and with a clear focus on quality but it was criticised for taking too many callers to hospital and for sending ambulances when other responses would have been more appropriate. [10] The trust was subsequently inspected in 2018 and was found to have improved with a rating of "Good" [11]

See also

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  1. "Contact details - North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust". Care Quality Commission. Retrieved 28 December 2019.
  2. "Annual Report 2018/19" (PDF). North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust. Retrieved 28 December 2019.
  3. "Where we are". North West Ambulance Services. Retrieved 3 April 2014.
  4. "North West Ambulance Service loses contract to cover Cheshire". Chester Chronicle. 1 January 2016. Retrieved 2 January 2016.
  5. "Ambulance service looks to save millions by leasing BMW i3 electric vehicles". Contract hire and leasing. 27 Feb 2017. Retrieved 14 November 2017.
  6. "North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust - Where we are". Retrieved 2019-04-13.
  7. Contributor, Community (2017-07-31). "New home for Merseyside Ambulance staff". liverpoolecho. Retrieved 2019-04-13.
  8. "VIDEO: Take a look inside Lancaster's new community fire and ambulance station". Retrieved 2019-04-13.
  9. "Fire and ambulance services teaming up in new station". Retrieved 2019-04-13.
  10. "North West Ambulance Service gets mixed Care Quality Commission report". BBC News. 10 December 2014. Retrieved 12 January 2015.
  11. "North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust". Retrieved 2019-04-13.