Sidmouth’s insiprational donors

William Carnell and Mike Watts from Sidmouth were presented a medal for donating blood 100 times.

William Carnell and Mike Watts from Sidmouth were presented a medal for donating blood 100 times. - Credit: Archant

A pair of Sidmouth men have been recognised for their years of lifesaving, after each donating blood 100 times.

Mike Watts, 71, and William Carnell, 68, have potentially saved more than 600 lives between them.

They both received a commemorative medal from the NHS Blood and Transplant service at a ceremony earlier this month.

A keen golfer, Mike, of Woolbrook Road, has donated blood since 1977 after a blood van visited his work.

The 71-year-old said: “It is a worthwhile thing to do and it will be good to see new people coming forward.

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“You never know when you might be in need of a blood transfusion yourself.”

The donor, whose blood group, O-positive, is shared by 36 per cent of the population, is hoping more residents will roll up their sleeves and give blood.

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In the UK, only one per cent of people reach 100 donations and less than three per cent regularly give blood.

Mike, who is the senior captain at Honiton Golf Club, said: “They need more donations; the blood still has a limited life. I will give blood for as long as I can.”

William started donating blood when he was in the army in 1966.

The Sampson Close resident said: “Giving blood helps people and I always find I feel better in myself after donating blood.”

NHS Blood and Transplant spokesperson Karen Healy said: “These loyal donors are very special to us, which is why such an event gives us the opportunity to say a real heartfelt thanks.

“Between them, they have saved hundreds of lives and improved the lives of countless others who have required blood transfusions. These donors are an inspiration to us all.”

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