A DAD'S fight for survival has prompted a lifesaving plea in the House of Commons.

Dad-of-two Peter McCleave, 41, diagnosed with an incurable blood cancer, has been given less than seven years to live.

The iron man tri-athlete and rugby coach has teamed up with blood cancer charity DKMS to find a matching blood stem cell donor.

His eight-year-old son Max wrote an emotional letter urging people to save his dad's life and inspired 10,000 people to offer to be donors - in 24 hours.

MP Antoinette Sandbach raised Peter's case during health questions in parliament on Tuesday.

In a question to the Department for Health and Social Care, Mrs Sandbach said: “I hope the minister will join in praising my constituent Peter, who has myeloma, and set up the 10,000 donors register.

"They now have 22,000 donors registered but he has a rare ethnic mix of English, Irish, Chinese and Portuguese. What more can be done to encourage donors from minority communities?”

Northwich Guardian:

Peter McCleave with his sons Max, eight, and Seb, six

Replying to the question, Health Minister Jackie Doyle Price said: “We do encourage people to take that test to establish their genetic heritage so we can have more and more diverse people on the register.”

A blood stem cell (or bone marrow) transplant can replace a damaged immune system in a person with blood cancer – but only if the donor’s tissue type matches.

A transplant works by taking blood stem cells from a healthy donor and giving them to someone with blood cancer or a blood disorder.

The donor and the recipient must have the same tissue type. As there are millions of different combinations, finding a suitable match is very complicated.

Peter said: "Just two years ago I was fit and healthy and had just completed a notoriously challenging Ironman Triathlon. I fell ill after the competition and what doctors initially thought was pneumonia led to me being diagnosed with myeloma.

Northwich Guardian:

Peter McCleave fell ill after competing in an Ironman Triathlon

"I've been through several rounds of chemo but now I'm relying on a stranger to help save my life as I need to find a matching blood stem cell donor."

His son's moving letter led to nationwide publicity and more than 18,000 people have offered to become a donor.

Peter added:"We appeared on breakfast TV and radio shows and the amount of support we've received has simply blown us away.

"I had had such mixed feeling since Max wrote his letter. Pride, love and sadness. I had not realised how much he had been taking on board but coping with it too. An eight year old!

"I do hope I find my lifesaver so I get a second chance at life and create more incredible memories with my family.

"If you haven't already registered please sign up today and take that first step in becoming a potential lifesaver."

Mrs Sandbach added: “The Government is taking big steps to improve things, but at the end of the day we need more people to register. Only two per cent of people in the UK are registered as stem cell donors. This compares to nine per cent in Germany. We can and must do more.”

Visit dkms.org.uk to register for your home swab kit.