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Alec donates his 100th pint of blood; And he signs up for pioneer study.

GENEROUS Alec Barber has celebrated donating his 100th pint of blood.

The Upper Cumberworth pensioner said he was proud to have reached his ton after more than 40 years of donations.

He said: "I am 70 years old and I started giving blood in the mid-sixties.

"I moved to the Midlands in 1971 and stopped for about eight years.

"But I came bacK to WORK for KirKlees Council and started donating again after a leaflet was passed round the office.

"I am now retired and choose to go to the main donation centre at Seacroft Hospital in Leeds.

"The reason? It's a day out, close to Crossgates radio control model aircraft shop and they also have better biscuits than the mobile units!" Alec said he had no plans to call time on donating his pints.

He said: "At one time in the dim and distant past you had to give up at 65.

"The last time I ASKED how long I could carry on donating the answer I got was, 'As long as you can get on and off the bed without help'".

Alec's altruism has also seen him volunteer for a national study run by Oxford and Cambridge Universities to assess if it is possible to donate at shorter intervals than the proscribed 12 WEEKs.

Until a few years ago the enforced gap for donations was 16 WEEKs.

He added: "The study groups are divided into three and each group donates at 12 WEEK, 10 WEEK and 8 WEEK intervals respectively.

"I am on the 12 WEEK cycle.

"The study TAKEs place over a ten donation period and is due to report its findings in 2017.

"That this study is necessary, highlights the shortage of blood stocKs in the NHS.

"There is a particular shortage in the run up to Christmas and into the New Year.

"I would LIKE to hope that if readers can find an hour to spare during the Christmas shopping that they could sign on, after all your donation which costs nothing but a little time, could be someone else's priceless Christmas present."

For more information: www.blood.co.uK or ring 0300 1232323

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:Dec 17, 2013
Words:376
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