Eleanor ensures brother Jim is remembered in final gift

Former kidney patient Jim Aherne has made a lasting gift to the Royal Preston Hospital’s kidney unit where he was treated for more than a decade. 

Jim died aged 71 in 2021 but the unit, which he attended three times a week for his dialysis treatment lasting four hours per session, has just taken delivery of a new £1,700 Mindray machine labelled in his name.  

The machine, a device used in kidney examinations to measure a patient’s vital signs, was gifted by Jim’s sister Eleanor Morgan, of Ashton. Eleanor raised the funds to cover its cost by asking for donations in lieu of gifts when she celebrated her 80th birthday in 2022. 

This donation comes after Jim championed exemption from hospital car parking charges for all kidney dialysis patients in 2019.

Eleanor said: “Jim would be so pleased. He loved to help others, especially his fellow dialysis patients. His campaign to have dialysis patients’ parking charges removed generated national media coverage, featuring in the Daily Mirror and Daily Mail.

“I didn’t really want to celebrate my 80th without Jim as we were very close and I miss him terribly but my sons, Bill and Val, talked me into it. I decided instead of presents to do something in Jim’s name. I asked Bhavna Chauhan, a member of staff on the kidney unit, for ideas and she suggested this machine. I can’t thank my family and friends enough for the help and donations they gave me.” 

Eleanor, who moved to Preston from Dublin more than 50 years ago, worked with members of Lancashire Teaching Hospitals’ Charity team to buy the Mindray machine. 

Fundraiser Lucy Clark said: “Eleanor’s tribute to her brother in funding the Mindray machine is so touching. It’s been great to hear all about Jim. Dialysis patients attending the Royal Preston Hospital do not pay for car parking.”