10:20am Wednesday 18th September 2013
By Emma Rigby
A NORTHWICH man has been praised after rolling up his sleeves and donating 100 pints of blood.
Graham Roughsedge, from Hartford, will be honoured for reaching the blood donation milestone at a special awards ceremony later this year.
The 75-year-old, who started giving blood when he was just 18, was presented with a certificate and commemorative plate for his achievement.
“I started giving blood as soon as I could because my dad did,” said the father-of-two.
“During the war everyone had to do it and he always did it so I started as soon as I could and just carried on.”
Graham thought his blood donation days were all but over when, at 70, he was told he had to roll down his sleeves.
He said: “I was told I had to retire but then a few weeks later, I got a letter saying that the rules had been changed and people over 70 could donate again – so I started almost immediately.
“I’m 76 next month and I’m still doing it – I do it three times a year.”
Reaching the impressive milestone has only pushed Graham to continue on his lifesaving mission.
He said: “I’m going to keep on doing it until I can’t and they say no.
“Illness is something that comes with old age but until that day comes, I’ll keep donating.”
Proud wife June, who had to stop donating blood due to ill health, said: “I think it is a fantastic achievement – he has helped to save lives and he deserves to be recognised.”
Graham hopes his achievement will encourage others to take part in saving lives.
He added: “You can’t start giving blood when you’re old but if you have given blood in the past, you can restart no matter how old you are and I just hope I can encourage someone to take that leap.”
Barbara Blanche, from NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “It is amazing to see the dedication of long-standing donors like Mr Roughsedge who have been giving blood for decades.
“They are an inspiration to us all and we hope that others will follow in their footsteps to save and improve the lives of many people.”
Anyone aged over 17, weighing more than 50kg (7st 12lbs) and in general good health could potentially become a blood donor.
For more information, visit blood.co.uk or call 0300 123 23 23.
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