TODAY it is more important than ever for people to come forward and give blood.

Oxfordshire needs a further 2,000 people to become donors if the NHS in the county is going to meet its quotas.

And with a state-of-the-art donation centre reopening recently at the John Radcliffe Hospital, there has never been a better time to sign up.

Centre manager Gayle Franklin warns that the “donor base” has reduced in recent years, so new volunteers need to be found to replace them.

So this week, the Herald is calling on those who have never donated before to think hard about giving it a try.

We are also urging dormant donors who have not given blood recently to start making regular donations again.

The blood given will go towards providing lifesaving transfusions that are so vital to treating many patients.

Each pint of blood can benefit up to three people and as regular donor Andy Moore says, “it’s only a couple of hours and it’s incredibly important”.

A mere 90 minutes could donate enough platelets for three adults or 12 children, similarly a single donation of normal blood could help treat up to four people.

Forthcoming donor sessions in our area include one at Didcot Civic Hall next Wednesday from 1.30-3.30pm and 4.15-7.30pm.

You can book an appointment at or simply drop in on the day.