AN NHS worker has been presented with a surprise gift after collecting blood and plasma from donors in Southampton.

Marty Viner received a selection of treats from staff at Scrivens Opticians & Hearing Care in High Street, Hythe, in recognition of his work on the frontline.

Marty, 64, has been working longer shifts than normal at Southampton Donor Centre.

Yasmine Casey, manager of Scrivens' Hythe branch, said: “It is our way of showing our gratitude to Covid heroes who are working so hard in these challenging times.

"Marty and his wife Dee are loyal customers who both work for the NHS and are always friendly and positive.

“We nominated Marty in our company’s campaign which recognises special people with a surprise gift and a £50 Scrivens voucher. He certainly deserves it.”

Marty, who works for the NHS Blood and Transplant Service, said: “I was totally surprised and felt it was quite something.

"The staff at Scrivens are really nice people who look after us very well, but I never expected this.”

Marty has seen his workload increase since the start of the pandemic.

His work involves taking blood, plasma and platelets from donors who are given a health screening beforehand. Antibody-rich plasma from people who have had Covid can help others fight the virus.

Marty used to work in non-emergency patient transport services where his wife is an ambulance care assistant.