Mongolian villagers may well be scratching their heads in a few weeks time when they see a St John ambulance from Wiltshire whizz past them on the way to Ulan Bataar.

Wiltshire St John Ambulance recently donated its ageing 1989 Land Rover Defender 4x4 ambulance to a team from Bristol taking part in the Mongol Rally.

The Bristol group came to the organisation’s Devizes HQ to pick up the ambulance and will be spending the next few weeks preparing it for the 10,000-mile trip to Mongolia.

They will be raising money for the Christina Noble Children’s Foundation, the Mercy Corps and St John Ambulance. Once the ambulance has reached its destination, it will be presented to the Mongolian emergency services along with two stretchers and first aid materials.

Des Young, county fleet manager for Wiltshire St John Ambulance, said: “The Land Rover had reached the end of its useful life for us.

“We are really pleased to be able to put it to two good uses – helping the team to raise funds for their charities and helping the Mongolians to provide ambulance cover for their communities.

“That country has had a very tough year and needs all the help it can get.”