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Let The Beat Go On – thousands participate in 30-hour dance marathon to smash Guinness World Records title

Busting a move for Tesco’s Dance Beats fundraising campaign, on 19-20 July thousands of Tesco colleagues, members of the public and celebrities beat the GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS® title for longest dance marathon relay.

  • Led by celebrities Kimberly Wyatt and Aston Merrygold, the epic attempt in aid of Tesco’s Dance Beats campaign saw cast of almost 5,000 people dancing for over 30 hours to raise millions to support the life-changing work of Cancer Research UK, the British Heart Foundation and Diabetes UK
  • Thousands of dance marathon fundraising events took place in Tesco stores across the UK between 18 and 20 July to help raise vital funds for the UK’s leading health charities
  • Every 24 hours in the UK, there are more than 990 new diagnoses of cancer***, 4,100 new diagnoses of heart and circulatory diseases**** and 700 new diagnoses of diabetes***** in the UK

Almost 5,000 people, led by pop star Aston Merrygold and professional dancer Kimberly Wyatt, have broken the current GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS® time for Longest dance marathon relay*. The existing record of 25 hours and 2 minutes was passed at exactly 9.03am on Saturday 20 July during the epic conclusion of Tesco’s biggest ever fundraising campaign, Dance Beats.

The world record attempt, at Wembley Stadium (connected by EE), kicked-off at 8am on Friday 19 July and saw thousands of people – including celebrities, Tesco colleagues and members of the public - support the heroic 30-hour dance extravaganza.

Tesco Dance Beats’ world record-breaking dancers shimmied to everything from pop and indie to house and hip-hop in one-hour shifts, with a baton passing seamlessly between groups of participants in a continuous 30-hour relay.

The world record-breaking feat complemented a weekend of dance marathon events in thousands of Tesco stores across the country, all part of a huge nationwide effort to raise millions of pounds to support the life-changing work of Cancer Research UK, the British Heart Foundation and Diabetes UK.

Tesco Dance Beats ambassador Kimberly Wyatt said:

“The Dance Beats dancefloor is a wonderful thing – full of energy, excitement and a million different dance styles. It doesn’t matter how people have moved around the dancefloor this weekend – crucially, they’ve kept moving and moved this campaign to a fantastic finale. The hours have flown by!”

Tesco Dance Beats ambassador Aston Merrygold said:

“Being involved in a world record is amazing. But even more amazing is seeing people travel from all over the country and unite on the dancefloor in aid of such important causes. We’re here today dancing for all those people. Together we can make a real difference and beat cancer, beat heart diseases and fight diabetes.”

Dave Lewis, Tesco CEO, said:

“It’s so inspiring to see thousands of our colleagues joining members of the public on the dancefloor to have fun, smash a world record and help raise millions for three incredible charities. This is a great achievement in our centenary year, and everyone who has taken part this weekend can be rightly proud of their marathon dance efforts.”

Michelle Mitchell, Cancer Research UK CEO, Simon Gillespie, British Heart Foundation CEO, and Chris Askew, Diabetes UK CEO, jointly commented:

“We want to say an enormous thank you to the thousands of Tesco colleagues, charity volunteers and members of the public who got behind the Dance Beats campaign. Thanks to them, Dance Beats will be supporting the vital work of the British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK and Diabetes UK.

“The money raised from these events will help fund the pioneering research we’re doing to improve the lives of those affected by heart and circulatory diseases, cancer and diabetes.”

 The public can still support the Dance Beats campaign by TEXT TO DONATE: Text DANCE to 70507 to give £5 [16+ only]**


Notes for editors

  1. Dance Beats supports the life-changing work of its three national health charity partners - Cancer Research UK, the British Heart Foundation and Diabetes UK. It follows last year’s announcement of a five-year partnership between Tesco and the three charities - Little Helps for Healthier Living. The partnership brings together the skills and expertise of the three charities and Tesco to help lower the risk of heart and circulatory disease, cancer and Type 2 diabetes. Targeted activities and campaigns include:
  • Developing the UK’s leading workplace health programme for Tesco’s 300,000 UK colleagues
  • Aligning communication campaigns in store and online with national health campaigns
  • Training Tesco pharmacists to help them better support customers in the prevention and management of heart and circulatory disease, cancer and Type 2 diabetes
  • Sharing anonymised sales information to help develop insight on health policy and public health programmes
  • Fundraising for more health research – innovative and engaging fundraising initiatives that help customers and colleagues raise money for the three charities

You can find more details on this announcement here.

2. Almost every family and every community in the UK will be affected by one of these health conditions. Additional statistics of note:

  • 1 in 2 people born after 1960 will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime
  • Today, 460 people will lose their lives to heart and circulatory diseases
  • Someone is diagnosed with diabetes every two minutes

3. More details on Cancer Research UK, The British Heart Foundation and Diabetes UK respectively can be found here:

4. Tesco PLC is the largest retailer in the UK. More details on our business and our approach to corporate responsibility can be found here:

5. All monies raised for the health partnership will be split equally amongst the three charities. Cancer Research UK, a registered charity in England and Wales (1089464) and in Scotland (SC041666) and in Isle of Man (1103). British Heart Foundation, a registered charity in England and Wales (225971) and in Scotland (SC039426). Diabetes UK, a registered charity in England and Wales (215199) and in Scotland (SC039136).

**Full Terms and Conditions for Text To Donate -

***There are around 363,000 new cancer cases in the UK every year, that’s more than 990 every day (2014-2016).

**** There are around 1.5 million people diagnosed with heart and circulatory diseases in the UK every year.  On average, that’s 4,100 every day. BHF analysis of UK GBD estimates, 2017 every year.

***** Compiled from England and Wales comes from the NDA 17/18, the Scottish Diabetes Survey 2017, ONS pop and Scottish Diabetes Survey

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