A CHARITY which helps the NHS by delivering small urgent items on two wheels has received a cash boost from a Dunbar group.

A grant of £3,500 was given to Blood Bikes Scotland by Community Windpower and BeGreen Dunbar after a significant increase in demand for its services from the NHS in recent months.

Blood Bikes Scotland is self-funded and its income is generated by fundraising and grants.

However, the Covid-19 pandemic has meant fundraisers have been suspended.

The charity operates a fleet of 12 bikes and one car, supporting four NHS authorities – Lothians, Borders, Forth Valley and Fife.

Its service to the NHS is free and saves the NHS from costs on taxis and couriers, as Blood Bikes Scotland carries blood and urine samples, equipment and various documents.

John Baxter, chairman of Blood Bikes Scotland, said: “As a result of Covid-19, the demand for our service by the NHS increased by almost 70 per cent from March to April.

“Our fundraising activities have been suspended but we need income more than ever now to cover the additional service for the NHS, which is why we applied to the Covid-19 crisis fund run by Community Windpower and BeGreen Dunbar.

“We were delighted to have the application processed so quickly, as it enabled us to direct the funds swiftly into ensuring we could continue to support the NHS authorities.”

Diane Wood, community benefits director at Community Windpower, which operates the Aikengall Community Wind Farms in East Lothian, was happy to help.

She said: “Blood Bikes Scotland provide a vital support service to the NHS in Scotland, which is why we didn’t hesitate in approving the application when it came in.”