Zoe Ball’s first blood donation

Zoe Ball, Radio 2’s Breakfast Show host, recently headed to our West End Donor Centre to give blood for the first time.

Zoe with Senior Sister, Sandra Sowerby

Once her morning shift was finished at the BBC’s Wogan House studio – just a hop, skip and a jump away from our donor centre on Margaret Street – she was greeted by staff and, in just a few minutes, the Ball blood was in the bag.

She told us, “Do you know, I can’t believe it’s all so quick and actually so straightforward. My mum’s been donating blood for years, and she’d always say she was going off to do it and I’d think ‘yeah, I must do that, I must do that’, but it’s life isn’t it – those things that you always say you’re going to do and just never get round to.

“It was only when a listener had sent in a message saying they were going off to give blood that I think all the paths crossed, and you guys called to say ‘yes please do!’ I’m so glad I did!”


Zoe was surprised at just how little time she spent in the donation chair. 

“From the moment of coming in the door, giving blood (which took 6 minutes 56 seconds – I’m quite proud of that time!) and having my biscuit and a little rest, it took, what? 15 minutes? 20 minutes?

“It’s actually a really pleasant experience, really straightforward, very easy…and more people need to do it. We need more young men giving blood, and also lots of different ethnic groups.

I think if you realised how easy it is to do it, and how every few months it would just take you half an hour to help save somebody’s life…I think more people would hopefully jump at the chance.”

She added, “It’s actually quite fun and the biscuits are very delicious…I went for a mint Club!”

She paused. “Two mint Clubs…and some sea salt crisps!”

Thank you to Zoe for doing something amazing – we look forward to seeing you again soon!