A HUGE search to find a donor for Oscar Saxelby-Lee led to six blood cancer patients receiving potentially life-saving transplants - and that number is expected to rise.

Blood cancer charity DKMS revealed the figures a year to the day since nearly 5,000 people turned out for a donor drive held at Oscar's school.

A record-breaking 4,855 people registered at Pitmaston Primary School over two days - with some queuing in the rain to try and save the life of the Worcester schoolboy with a rare leukaemia. It was the largest UK donor drive the charity had ever seen.

Another 1,090 turned out to a second donor drive held at Worcester's Guildhall a week later.

Gabriella Brooks, from DKMS, said: “As a result of Oscar's appeal, six people who attended these recruitment events were matched with people who had blood cancer which is a fantastic result. That figure will invariably grow larger.” She also said events held for Oscar added 6,256 people to a register of potential stem cell donors - although the number of people inspired by his story to join the register elsewhere or by post will make that figure much higher.

Pitmaston Primary, in St John’s, organised their drive after Oscar’s parents Olivia Saxelby and Jamie Lee revealed he had been diagnosed with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (T-ALL).

Ms Saxelby said: “It’s so heart-warming that so many came together for our little boy and, with that, more lives have been saved other than Oscar’s. It’s amazing and the feeling of helping to save another person’s life must be incredible.”

Ms Saxelby described hearing a donor - not from the Worcester events -had been found for Oscar.

She said: “The sense of relief and hopefulness is one that we will never forget. We will forever be grateful for the love of Oscar’s army. It has been the most horrific time of our lives but knowing others out there were willing to help in any way they could was just awe-inspiring to us all.”

Pitmaston’s headteacher, Kate Wilcock, said: “This is absolutely incredible news that a further six people have benefited from the search for donors. I think no matter what happens in the rest of my career, the Oscar stem cell drive is one of the proudest things I will ever achieve. We were in a privileged position, where we could facilitate such a big event, that has now had that level of impact. To think this could be life-saving for other people is absolutely mind-blowing. People stay on the list for years and years so we know more and more people will benefit.”

“Thank you to all the staff, all the volunteers, DKMS, the school’s PTA, parents and also the local community. Everyone coming and helping - in heavy rain - that’s what’s made it possible.”

Mrs Wilcock added: "For us at school the priority was to find Oscar the donor he so desperately needed but we knew there was a huge chance it could help other people and it's amazing to hear that six other people have benefited and hopefully there will be many more.

"The absolute dream was that we'd find him a donor but we did it wanting to help and show support for Oscar's family.

Louise White, organiser of the Guildhall event, said: “I’m so pleased to hear that six more donors have been found all because of Oscar. Hopefully more people will read this and also be inspired to register.”

Despite having a transplant, Oscar’s leukaemia returned and he travelled to Singapore for pioneering CAR-T cell therapy, not available on the NHS, after a crowdfunding appeal, via the Grace Kelly Childhood Cancer Trust, raised £740,000.

Although free from leukaemia, his parents say he is suffering from debilitating side-effects of the treatment. They hope he can now undergo a second transplant, with his dad as a donor, to kickstart a new, healthy immune system.

*If you’re aged between 17 and 55 and in good health, please go to DKMS.org.uk and request a swab kit. You simply swab the inside of your cheeks and send everything back to DKMS. Your details will be added to the register and you will then be on standby as a potential lifesaver.