Weightlifting event raises tons of money for Help for Heroes

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Weightlifters at a Gosport gym smashed their target of lifting the equivalent of HMS Daring to raise money for Help for Heroes.

The 48-hour challenge was held at Don Styler’s Physical Training Centre in Monks Walk with the aim of lifting the weight of type 45 destroyer HMS Daring, which weighs 8,000 tonnes.

Chief instructor Matt Styles organised the event and with the help of more than 60 people, they reached the target in just 26 and a half hours.

By the end they had lifted a total of 12,104 tonnes.

Matt said: ‘I was pleased and surprised we reached the target so quickly.

‘The atmosphere was amazing. Everyone was really keen and people were asking if we can do it again next year?

‘The camaraderie was brilliant. The last hour and a half was hectic as everyone was flat out on the machines.’

Military charity Help for Heroes is a cause close to the instructor’s heart.

Matt was in the army and was shot in the leg while on duty in Afghanistan in 2011.

He received support from the charity in his recovery and wanted to do something to say thank you.

Matt stayed for the whole time and also got his family involved – wife Hayley and sons Wade, three, Phane, seven and Rafe, nine. His dad Don was the oldest competitor at 78 years old.

Participants, including many ex-military and serving personnel, were in teams and had set weights on different apparatus in the gym while a running total was taken every 30 minutes.

The 8,000 tonnes-mark was almost reached on the leg press alone.

All the sponsorship and entry fee will go to Help for Heroes and it is hoped they have raised more than £4,000 from the event.

Thanks go to Matt from Trooper Tree Services, Gosport Graphics, Daniel Styler, Done to a Turn, Lang Property Services, APD Logistics, Hardway Cabs, Mamas baps, Grace James for donating fruit and water, and Cooper Vision for sponsoring one of their employees, Antony Holt, with a massive £500.