Demand on the region’s ambulance service increased by 12 per cent over the new year period, officials have said.

The East of England Ambulance Service (EEAST) received more than 4,100 calls on New Year's Eve and 4,800 on New Year's Day - a 12 per cent increase in demand from a year previously.

Karl Edwards, deputy director of service delivery, said: "This is traditionally a very busy time for the ambulance service and the last few days have been exceptionally busy.

"Our staff and volunteers are working extremely hard and doing their best for patients in the community.

"The health system is experiencing this surge with us, and we are working closely with every trust to do everything possible to achieve good patient outcomes.

"Demand continues to be high and we'd urge people to only call 999 if it is a life-threatening emergency.

"If you need medical help, NHS Choices website, pharmacy, GP, walk-in centre and NHS 111 are available for you."