British Taekwondo in World Record with KPMG
Office workers at KPMG today became martial arts world record setters, in the largest ever synchronised taekwondo routine which took place simultaneously today at eleven locations around the country, with over 800 people taking part. As well as a world record, the net result is a projected sum of £50,000 raised for children’s charity Barnardo’s.
Dubbed the ‘Big Blue Kick’, the initiative was the latest fundraising activity that KPMG has held in aid of Barnardo’s which is the firm’s staff-selected charity. KPMG has already raised over £1 million for the cause in the first eighteen months of the relationship. KPMG is also a sponsor of GB Taekwondo.
The 800 KPMG staff punched, kicked and blocked their way through a ten minute taekwondo routine. The biggest group was at Canary Wharf in London where 330 staff massed in Montgomery Square. Encouraged by celebrity Cheryl Baker of Bucks Fizz fame (and former presenter of BBC programme ‘Record Breakers’), and accompanied by Craig Brown and Stephanie Allen of the GB taekwondo team and with instruction from British Taekwondo, they boldly carried out their routine watched by a crowd of surprised but enthusiastically supportive onlookers.
Mike Kelly, Head of CSR at KPMG, said: “We had a fantastic response from staff who came out all around the country to set a brand new world record and raise money for an excellent cause. As well as raising money for Barnardo’s, the Big Blue Kick enabled us to demonstrate our support for GB Taekwondo in what is of course a huge year for them with the London 2012 Olympics coming up fast. It’s an amazing discipline – most of us were worn out after just a ten minute non-contact routine!”
Diana Tickell, UK Director of Marketing at Barnardo’s, said: “This is a fantastic achievement by KPMG – the money raised will go towards helping the invaluable work we do with thousands of vulnerable children every day.”
Steve Flynn, Commercial Manager at GB Taekwondo, said: “With so much focus on the Games this summer, it was great to be involved in an initiative that allowed so many people to access our sport for the first time and to set a World Record in the process. All this and the added benefit of valuable funds being raised for Barnardo’s. Congratulations to the staff of KPMG for their fantastic efforts and for their continued support of the GB team who I’m sure will be inspired by your success today.”
Cheryl Baker added: “Today’s record breaker has been great fun, whilst raising money for a great cause. It’s been a privilege to take part.”
The Big Blue Kick took place at 11.30am this morning at the following locations: London (Canary Wharf), Birmingham, Bristol, Gatwick, Glasgow, Leeds, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham, Reading and Watford. It was officially verified as a new Guinness World Record (the greatest number of people participating in a coordinated taekwondo display – multiple venues).