DEDICATED donors who have given blood hundreds of times have been recognised for rolling up their sleeves to help save lives.
Three blood donors from Leigh and Atherton were rewarded for their commitment at an awards ceremony held by NHS Blood and Transplant.
David Blackledge, Sharon Edwards and Joyce Grundy were each presented with a crystal plate for their 75 donations.
David, aged 54, has been giving blood since 1977.
The instrument technician, from Overton Street, Leigh, said: “Wanting to benefit other people prompted me to start giving blood.
“It is very easy and only takes about three or four hours a year for four donations.”
Sharon, of Holden Road, Leigh, has been a blood donor since she was 18.
The 53-year-old administrator said: “I felt it was a good idea to help people.
“My grandaughter having open heart surgery has kept me giving over the years, think who you can help.”
Completing the local trio was Joyce Grundy from Hunt Street, Atherton.The ceremony took place at The Monastery, Gorton, and the awards were presented by grateful mum Kristy Connaghan and her daughter Kitty, aged 12, who needed blood after falling off her bike after a hemangioma – a birthmark inside the body – ruptured and caused a massive internal bleed.
Kitty, lost a lot of blood and underwent transfusions and surgery.
Mrs Connaghan, aged 42, from Ashton said: “It's hard to put into words how Kitty's transfusions affected us. We just know that without the selfless donations from others then Kitty wouldn't be with us.
“The transfusions she received were life saving and life changing. They, along with the care she received, made us realise how much more we could do to help others."
Barbara Blanche, lead donor relations manager at NHSBT, said: " The commitment that these blood donors have shown to donating blood throughout their lives is remarkable and we hope this inspires others to follow.
“Blood has a limited shelf life of 35 days for red blood cells and just seven days for platelets. Because of this, it is vital that both existing and new blood donors come forward now.
For details of sessions in your area or to book an appointment call 0300 123 23 23 or visit