1. ITV Report

Man from Wolverhampton approaches 500th blood donation

Robin Miller, regularly blood donor Photo: ITV Central News

A man who emigrated to Australia decades ago visits the blood donor centre in Birmingham every time he visits the UK. He's now approaching a landmark number of 500 donations.

Robin Miller grew up in Wolverhampton, and makes donating blood platelets one of his top priorities whenever he's back.

It takes about an hour and a half to make a platelet donation. So for most, it's a chance to read the paper.

People taking time out to donate blood Credit: ITV Central

For Robin Miller, it's a chance to catch up with old friends, nurses he's known for years. Coming here has become an important routine.

He says he was inspired to donate after a visit from someone who worked in a children's hospital, and argued, 'if you can improve the lot of a child with leukaemia, why wouldn't you?'.

A platelet donation helps people undergoing surgery and treats Leaukemia and Lymphomas and other conditions.

Platelets are tiny cells in the blood that help stem blood loss and promote clotting. They're crucial.

Mel Hartland had leaukemia several years ago, and along with other treatments platelet donations helped him recover:

"I think it's a great thing to do. There's no benefit for them - they have to take time out to do it and they help a lot of people who maybe they'll never meet or know about. I'm really grateful and thankful for that and I'd like to thank everyone for that and I'd like to say keep doing it. '

Platelets only have a shelf life of seven days, so it's vital to get donors in on a regular basis.

At the moment, only 4% of people eligible to donate make the trip. But it's hoped Robin Millar's 500th donation will inspire more of us to do it.