Awards for blood donor stars

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Two veteran blood donors from Scarborough were among those honoured for rolling up their sleeves to help save lives at a recent awards ceremony.

Mike Jackson and Anthony Broughton were recognised by NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) for reaching 75 and 100 donations respectively.

Only around four per cent of the eligible population give blood and of that four per cent, only two per cent ever reach 75 donations and just one per cent reach 100 donations.

And as each single donation can help save up to three lives, between them Mr Jackson and Mr Broughton may have contributed to keeping thousands of patients alive in local hospitals over the years.

Mr Jackson, who is aged 49 and works as a hotel manager, first started giving blood in 1981 as his father was a donor and he was aware of the life-saving role played by blood as he used to be a motorcyclist.

He said: “Not everyone can be a doctor or brain surgeon, yet as a humble donor we play just as important a part in saving lives.”

Mr Broughton has been giving blood for almost 50 years and first started donating as both his parents were donors.

The retired 65-year-old said: “My daughter, son and granddaughter all give blood. The time it takes to give blood is nothing compared with the benefits to others whose lives depend on it.”

Mr Jackson and Mr Broughton were presented with commemorative crystal awards to mark their achievements by Yorkshire blood recipient David Copes, during a ceremony at Beverley Racecourse.

Mr Copes, of South Elmsall, needed 40 units of blood after receiving horrific injuries in a hit-and-run motorcycle accident near Leeds.

NHS Blood and Transplant spokesperson Donna Batty said: “It’s wonderful that we can call on people who have dedicated themselves to giving blood over so many years, performing a life-saving role for no reward, other than the knowledge that they are helping others.

“However, every year many existing donors in our region have to stop giving blood due to factors like ill-health and medication, so in order to maintain blood stocks, we constantly need new donors.

“If you would like to become one of the life-savers of the future, make an appointment to attend a local session either by calling 0300 123 23 23 or visiting our website - www.blood.co.uk

“We welcome new donors aged from 17 to 65 and there is no upper age limit for existing donors.”

The next Scarborough session will be at Westborough Church on Tuesday August 20 from 2pm to 4pm and 5pm to 7pm. Call the number above to make an appointment.