UK's first hand transplant patient from Halifax tells his story as part of organ donor exhibition

Hand Transplant man Mark Cahill
Hand Transplant man Mark Cahill

A Halifax man who received the UK's first ever hand transplant and went on to use the new limb to save his wife's life is part of a new exhibition to raise awareness of organ donation.

Mark Cahill, who underwent groundbreaking surgery at Leeds Teaching Hospitals in 2012, is among those whose stories are told in the exhibition Nine Lives Saved - the Transplant Gallery.

The series of portraits at Leeds City Museum demonstrates who nine inspiring people had their lives changed thanks to an organ transplants.

Mr Cahill, 58, used his transplanted hand to perform chest compressions on his wife Sylvia after she stopped breathing during a heart attack in 2016.

The exhibition, which will open on Friday (May 3) at the museum's Broderick Hall, tells of the achievements of each transplant recipient, from sporting triumphs to climbing mountains and attending school for the first time.

It has been organised by Be a Hero, the campaign to get more people in Yorkshire and Humber to join the organ donor register.

Dr Claire Tordoff, clinical lead in organ donation at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “The Transplant Gallery will shine a light on the importance of organ donation and the impact a donor has on not only the recipient, but their families, friends and colleagues.

"These inspiring individuals have used their gift of life to do incredible things.

"Each subject has a different story, but all of them have volunteered to take part in this event in order to help us spread the word about organ donation and encourage the people of Yorkshire to talk about it and sign the register.”

The exhibition, featuring photography by Simon Wiffen, will be open from 10am on Friday-5pm on Sunday (May 5).