#LoveYourNHS campaign helps choir take on Justin Bieber and X Factor in Christmas chart race

A collection of NHS staff have become second favourite to top the charts this Christmas thanks to a social push

Justin Bieber better watch his back as an NHS hospital choir has become a surprise challenger in the annual race for the coveted Christmas number one slot.

'A Bridge Over You' by the Lewisham and Greenwhich Trust group is a stirring mix of Simon and Garfunkel's 'Bridge Over Troubled Water' and Coldplay's 'Fix You’, and aims to celebrate the staff who look after patients during the festive period and all year round.

All proceeds from the track will be shared between charities Carers UK and Mind with a percentage also being distributed between Samh (Scotland) and Niamh (Northern Ireland).

Taking on the likes of X Factor winner Louisa Johnson, the choir has mounted a social campaign dubbed #LoveYourNHS to help it reach the the top spot.

Along with #NHS4XmasNo1, the hashag is picking up 200,000 hits a day and bookies have tipped the single as a second favourite to take the Christmas crown.

The accompanying video incorporates 'wedding vow' style slogans such as 'for richer or for poorer' to highlight the unique relationship between the NHS and those it treats. To support this positioning, @LoveYourNHS is inviting social media users to raise awareness of the song through #IDO selfies on Twitter.

People from the world of entertainment and sport have also backed the initiative including; Phillip Schofield, Holly Willoughby, Stephen Fry and Rufus Hound.

As of noon today (22 December) the singers were topping both the iTunes and the live hits charts.

The choir is made up entirely of NHS nurses, doctors, physios, midwives, porters, administrators and other staff. The group has been performing carol concerts in hospital wards across London as part of the drive.

“Firstly we can’t thank everyone who has downloaded the song enough”, said member and junior doctor Harriet Nerva; “and to all those supporting us on social media, sharing the video and encouraging their friends and family to get involved.

"The media have also been incredibly supportive in spreading the word. Seeing your names mentioned in the same sentence as Justin Bieber and Simon Cowell is surreal to say the very least."

The tune is available to download from iTunes, Amazon and other online retailers and is also available to stream on Spotify and Deezer.

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