What an extraordinary week it has been for Matt Pargeter - who, despite his drumming kit cutting out and other minor hiccups, managed to drum for 170 hours at the Victoria Shopping Centre to raise close to £4,000 for three Harrogate charities.
He might not have achieved the Guinness World Record for the longest drumming marathon by an individual because of these technicalities, but he carried on like a trooper for the whole week and raised a huge amount of awareness for the Harrogate Homeless Project, Harrogate district Mind and the Acorn Centre, and Saint Michael’s Hospice.
Finishing on Tuesday to coincide with World Mental Health Day, Matt said he hopes his challenge has encouraged people to think about mental health more, as someone who has been supported by Harrogate district Mind in the past.
He said: “I’d like conversations around mental health to be normalised, for people to feel totally comfortable talking about how they are feeling. It shouldn’t feel like a dirty little secret.”
Also very close to Matt’s heart is the team at the Harrogate Homeless Project, who secured him accommodation at their hostel for three weeks and helped him into a house share at a time when he needed support.
Matt said: “People can think homeless people will just spend money on drugs and alcohol, so I think the fact that this has raised money for a recognised charity is really important.”
The Chief Executive of the Harrogate Homeless Project, Liz Hancock, said: “We are so grateful to Matt for raising the money and awareness.”