Barclays Bank triumph in Speedflex corporate fundraising challenge

A fundraising fitness challenge pitting 50 North East firms against one another has come to an end

Graham Wylie presents Stuart Egan and Barclays Bank team members with the Speedflex Corporate Challenge trophy
Graham Wylie presents Stuart Egan and Barclays Bank team members with the Speedflex Corporate Challenge trophy

A corporate fundraising challenge designed to promote health and fitness in the workplace has been hailed a success by North East businesses.

More than 30 companies took part in the Speedflex Corporate Challenge, entering 50 teams during a three-month period with the aim of burning as many calories per team as possible.

The winning team came from Barclays Bank, closely followed by IT specialists TSG and law firm Sintons. Other businesses that took part included Northumbrian Water, Allied Irish Bank, Muckle LLP, Brewin Dolphin, Tyne Met College, Ryecroft Glenton and Ward Hadaway.

The idea of the corporate challenge came from businessman Graham Wylie, the former chairman and founder of Sage Software who founded Newcastle-based health and fitness firm Speedflex Europe.

He said: “We wanted to engage with the corporate businesses in the region to promote the benefits of having a fit and healthy work force and we were pleasantly surprised by the interest and numbers of businesses that took part.

“The idea for the corporate challenge came from an afternoon watching Newcastle United in our box whilst observing some of the healthy eating and drinking that was taking place amongst the business fraternity. Let’s just say I could perhaps see some excess calories on show!

“We therefore chose the Newcastle United Foundation as our chosen charity with the £50 entry fee from each team going towards helping their good work in the community.”

The competition took place at the Jesmond-based Speedflex Centre, which features the unique Speedflex machines which automatically respond to and create resistance levels based on the force generated by the person using it.

Led by personal trainers, competitors took part in 45-minute, high-intensity group sessions, burning excess calories whilst linked up to a heart monitor. The winning team, Barclays Bank, scored a Speedflex Index score of 9.34 which was calculated by the amount of total calories burned divided by the total weight of the team.


David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer