The Gift He Keeps on Giving

By Jane Cruickshank / August 13, 2022
James hooked up and donating

A STONEHAVEN man has donated his 120th pint of blood and intends to keep on giving until he reaches his target of 150 pints.

James Bromley could have saved over 300 lives thanks to his commitment to three trips each year to give blood.

It turns out his first donation was made under duress, when he was just 20-years-old and working in the City of London. Young ‘Bromley’ was instructed by his manager to join a group of colleagues heading to the blood bank.

”I was outraged, I didn’t want to invest my blood,” he said.

”I seethed to myself, but in those days you immediately did what you were told.  And it wasn’t bad, much more mechanical, very cheerful though, and a cuppa and a tea cake, so quite ok.”

Energised by his own new blood

Having decided the experience was perfectly pleasant, James carried on making regular visits to the Moorgate and London Blood Centre where he racked up his first 85 pints. He missed donations only when a new career in the Parachute Regiment and later work the oil industry took him overseas.

James now donates at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary. He said each visit encourages him to ‘power-up’ afterwards.

”It galvanises me to get sporty again, to just appreciate that I can, and get out more often,” he said.

”It’s good for society, and it’s good for me.  I’ve seen others severely injured, and I’ve always thought that if I suffer a blood-shedding event, my body will not be traumatised, so I’d have a better chance of surviving the accident.”

Each donation can save three lives

Kimberley Petrie of the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service said James, with his milestone of 120 pints of blood, has helped save or improve the lives of 360 patients.

She added: ”This is because when you donate, we are able to use the red cells, platelets and plasma from your donation.”

And James intends to carry on giving this vital, lifesaving potential.

He said: ”I want to get to 150 pints donated !  I’ve done the maths, I can do it by the time I retire. It would be a decent life achievement.”

Some interesting facts from the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service:

  • Hospital demand for blood is up by 7%
  • During summer the attends for blood donation can drop by as much as 20%
  • There are eight different blood groups. The Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service (SNBTS) aim to retain 5-7 days supply of all eight blood groups at all times. At this time, people with the blood groups A and O are particularly asked to come forward. You can see Scotland’s daily blood stock levels on www.scotblood.co.uk