BRADFORD’S burns unit has gone from strength-to-strength since it reached its £300,000 fundraising target, according to its bosses.

The Plastic Surgery and Burns Research Unit (PSBRU) at the University of Bradford was set up after the 1985 fire disaster which killed 56 people and injured around 258.

A 30th anniversary appeal to support the unit was started by the Bradford City FC Supporters’ Board in April 2015, leading to a mammoth fundraising effort.

Hundreds of events took place across the Bradford district and around the world as Bantams fans dug deep.

The £300,000 target was reached in May last year and the unit’s bosses say the legacy of its work has been enhanced by the donation.

The unit, which was set up by Professor David Sharpe and the late Professor Terry Baker, has appointed two new research fellows, Dr Lucy Trevor and Dr Gurnam Virdi, to the department this year.

The unit has teamed up with the regional burns unit at the Pinderfields Hospital, Wakefield.

Bradford’s unit has also appointed Dr Kirsty Smith, who has been doing research work on burns health informatics.

It was given a further cash boost earlier this year when it was handed £88,000 for a three-year study to find out how hair follicles can help chronic burns victims in their recovery.

The cash has been given to the PSBRU by the Oddfellows Friendly Society – a national membership organisation that has Huddersfield and Bradford branches. The project will also explore how the treatment of wounds for those with diabetes can be improved.

Another of its plastic surgery trainee doctors, Dr Priyatama Kincha, is working on her science masters project on a review of therapeutic interventions on management of the burns wound. She is working with the University of Edinburgh on this project.

Ajay Mahajan, consultant plastic surgeon and director of research at PSBRU, said: “The funds raised have given us the security to carry on with our research activities in the forthcoming years.

“Thanks to the support of the people of Bradford the research unit has expanded significantly over the last year.

“We look forward to carrying out various interesting projects that would help develop and deliver safe innovative health care for the future.

“Last year was a very busy year for us as we were not only busy with our work at the research unit, but we were also very much in the public eye with all the fundraising activities that went on for the 30th anniversary.

“We are very grateful to the people of Bradford for helping us achieve our target of £300,000 and even more so for the continued fundraising events that are on-going beyond the 30th anniversary.”