After 35 years with the ambulance service, Ambulance Operations Manager John Coyles is beginning his well-earned retirement.
After starting his career in December 1986 at Daventry Station in Northamptonshire, John finds himself coming full circle, finishing his career on 30 September 2021 based at Daventry station.
Beginning in Patient Transport Services, John joined the ambulance service aged 22 following a career in horticulture after being inspired by a chance encounter with a crew who attended an incident next to where he worked.
He said: “Following a nasty incident next to my place of work, I felt compelled to help. Seeing how the crew cared for the patient and helped them feel at ease, I thought then that maybe I could try my hand at the ambulance service. My mum was also a nurse, so I definitely had that caring instinct in me.”
Starting in Patient Transport gave John a good grounding before progressing onto the next stage of his career.
He said: “PTS is always a good place to learn the skills you need to transfer to technician or paramedic. You learn how to talk to patients, you learn the area that you work in geographically and it gives you a great insight into how the service works.”
After a year working for PTS, John then decided it was time to take his career to the next stage where he progressed to the technician role in 1987 before qualifying as a paramedic in 1992.
With skills and experience learnt on the frontline behind him, he then took the step into management in 1995 where he has been for the last 26 years, mainly focusing on operational roles.
Highlights in John’s career have been the many projects he has completed in his time at EMAS, including the introduction of the POLAMB and managing its first trial, to leading the Make Ready project in the Leicestershire division. He has also been the tactical commander for the British GP at Silverstone right on his doorstep in Northamptonshire for many years, something which he has been exceptionally proud to do.
When asked what he will miss about the ambulance service, John said:
“I will really miss the people. I have had the opportunity to work with so many different people in different capacities both at EMAS and partner organisations. I have been privileged to have so many opportunities during my time and it has been so rewarding.
“Although I will miss being at EMAS, I am looking forward to having some time to go travelling with my family perhaps to the USA or China and having time to enjoy those things which I have missed out on.”
Martin Claydon, Head of Operations in Northamptonshire said:
"John epitomises supportive leadership and has demonstrated all the trust values of integrity, respect, competence, contribution, and teamwork, in all of the work he has undertaken.
"He will be sorely missed and will leave a huge gap in the senior leadership team within the division. I would like to personally thank John for all his support, guidance and mentorship over the years that we have managed in Northamptonshire together."