Fin gives the NHS a tonne of gratitude every day in May

Giving the NHS a lift and a tonne, or more, of thanks. Falkirk-based rugby player Finlay Davey is joining friend and team-mate Tom Banatvala to raise funds - and weights - for the National Health Service in a unique month-long challenge.

By David Oliver
Saturday, 2nd May 2020, 7:30 am
Updated Saturday, 2nd May 2020, 10:48 am

The pair play for Edinburgh Accies and began a weightlifting programme yesterday which will see them lift a combined 1.4m kilograms over the course of May - one kilo for every staff member in the NHS.

Keeping in touch with supporters and one another via Instagram over the next 31 days, they have already almost trebled their £1,000 cash target even before a dumbbell left the ground at their makeshift home gyms yesterday for the start of their challenge.

Finlay (18), attends Fettes College and explained: “We were inspired by Colonel Tom Moore’s fundraising and since we’re both into our weights and fitness we agreed to do something we’re good at, but something to challenge us.

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01-05-2020. Picture Michael Gillen. FALKIRK. Day 39 of UK wide coronavirus lockdown. Fin Davey who is 'lifting the NHS' - a weightlifting challenge of 1kg for every staff member - 1.4m in total.

“As rugby players we’re used to weights sessions - but this will be two or three hours every day for the entire month so that’s not an aspect we’re looking forward to but it’ll be worth it for the cause.

“We’ll be doing loads of compound movements to get the total up each day - squats, overhead press, bench press - a variety of moves and a full-body work-out to get the total up - it equates to 23,000kg every day.”

As well as team-mates in the Accies and for their school, Banatvala (17) is an under-18s Scottish international prop and Davey plays number eight for the regional under-20s squad but plans to study accounting and finance at Exeter University where the rugby set-up was a big attraction.

Whenever term begins he’ll go in peak physical condition after a month of exercise and added: “I have a physio in Edinburgh and have asked a few questions about shoulders and knees but only a few queries.

Fin Davey (left) with team-mate Tom Banatvala

“I think if I told him exactly what I was planning he’d probably advise against it!

“We’re just really grateful to have such great and generous friends who have donated already - we’ve actually beaten our target already.” To donate visit uk.virginmoneygiving.com/TomandFinlayLiftingtheNHS or @liftingtheNHS on Instagram.

Fin's challenge began yesterday. Picture: Michael Gillen