DEDICATED donors from the Salisbury area have been awarded for their life saving efforts by NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT).

John Ellis, John Tarrant, Reia Jones and Martyn Fry were presented with a crystal award for giving blood 75 times and Peter Russell and Nigel Paines received theirs for donating 100 times.

Mr Tarrant has been giving blood for over 50 years and in that time has also been called upon to give blood to a recipient with a rare blood group.

He said: “I started donating blood while I was at college because I thought that it was a good thing to do. I never thought that when I started I would reach this milestone, but it’s great. I hope to continue donating to reach my 100th.”

Mr Paines said: “I initially started giving blood at college. When we were asked if we would like half an hour off with tea and biscuits, I jumped at the chance. I am so proud today that I have a gold award for something, I loved cross country at school and always thought I could get a medal, but to get recognised for this is better than winning any race.“

Jonathan Sewell, lead donor relations manager at NHSBT said: “These donors are a very special group of people and we want them to carry on spreading the message to all the people that they meet.”

Anyone wanting to donate for the first time should be aged between 17 and 65, weighing at least 50kg (7 stone 12lbs) and in general good health. If you’ve donated before, you can start again up to your 70th birthday and there is no upper age limit for donors who have donated in the last two years. To book an appointment call the Donor Line on 0300 123 23 23 or visit