Blood Bikes group celebrates tenth anniversary by lighting up Blackpool Tower

Life-saving heroes are celebrating their tenth anniversary of supporting the NHS with a vital service.

Thursday, 12th May 2022, 4:55 am

The Northwest Blood Bikes – a volunteer bike courier service for the local NHS – has carried out nearly 110,000 successful runs, covering more than 1.5 million miles and saving the NHS more than £6.3m since the charity started in May 2012.

Over two thirds of the work of the charity is deemed to be an urgent priority for the NHS.

To commemorate the milestone, the charity has planned to light up Blackpool Tower today and many of the bikers and volunteers will be on the Tower Headland to celebrate their momentous achievements over the past 10 years.

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North West Blood Bikes Lancs and Lakes

The group selflessly give up their free time to deliver life-saving blood and other urgent suppliers to NHS hospitals throughout Lancashire and the South Lakes.

The volunteers use motorbikes to make deliveries between hospitals including Blackpool Victoria, Royal Preston, Chorley and South Ribble hospitals.

The charity, which is run entirely by volunteers with no-one being paid for the work they carry out, was honoured with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service – the highest award available to volunteer groups – in 2016.

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Mark Entwistle, chairman of the charity, said: “Although we are called Blood Bikes and this is the main priority of the work we do transporting blood between hospitals, the service we undertake has changed over the years.

"In addition to transporting blood, we also deliver donor breast milk, medical samples, records, medicines, medical equipment or anything that is required urgently to improve the outcome for a patient or save their life.

“Our volunteers work long hours to make this possible and with over 450 volunteers, and over 300 bikers, we cover one of the largest areas in the country.

"In addition to the bikers, the vital work of the controllers and fund-raisers to provide this service is awe-inspiring.

“The commitment and dedication of all of the volunteers across the charity means that the charity continues to excel and grow.”

The charity works by having controllers working from home who receive calls and then dispatch a rider. They often work out of normal working hours, mainly through the night and 24 hours at weekends and bank holidays.

If you are interested in volunteering as a biker, controller, or help with the fundraising events that they undertake to support the community of Lancashire and South Lakes, visit http://www.nwbb-lancs.org