Elvis record attempt fails

HE rocked around the clock and then some more, but a new world record proved out of reach for an Elvis Presley impersonator.

Delivery driver Simon Goldsmith, 36, attempted to sing songs by The King for more than 43 hours over the weekend to set a new Guinness World Record and raise money for charity.

But his epic alehouse rock came to an end at just short of 34 hours at about 5.50pm on Saturday night when severe exhaustion forced ‘Elvis’ to leave the building.

Simon, of Little Bealings, had rattled through his two-hour set, featuring classics such as Heartbreak Hotel, Hound Dog and Suspicious Minds, about 17 times, starting at 8am on Friday morning in a marquee at the White Lion pub in Lower Ufford. Hundreds of people joined the fun as the pub got into the mood by selling Elvis Burgers.

Simon, who performs under the stage name Harry Isaac Presley, was chasing the current world record of 43 hours 11 minutes set by Thomas Gothje in 2004. He was only allowed a five-minute break every hour and no more than 30 seconds between songs.

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“I’m disappointed not to break the record, but it was an extraordinary experience - I could write a book about it,” said Simon yesterday.

“The more I went on, it felt like someone had two hands around my throat, and then like someone was pushing two fingers up my nostrils. I just couldn’t go on anymore - fair play to the guy who did 43 hours.

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“It’s hard enough to sing for that long in your own voice, let alone do an impersonation.

“My voice feels fine again now, but my legs have completely gone.”

He added: “There was a great atmosphere over the weekend and it was lovely to see so many old friends and well-wishers and so many people donating money. I’m so grateful to everyone.”

The challenge was raising money for St Elizabeth Hospice in Ipswich, where Simon’s father David, 58, died in April last year after a battle with cancer.

It is thought that more than �1,000 has already been raised. To donate, go to www.justgiving.com/elvisworldrecord

The strict guidelines meant he was only allowed a five-minute break every hour and no longer than 30 seconds between songs, which each had to be a minimum of two minutes.

Hundreds of people, including a revolving cast of stewards, witnesses and medical officers, had been royally entertained by Simon’s impressive act over the weekend, including the classic songs Suspicious Minds, Hound Dog, Always On My Mind and The Wonder of You.

The challenge, which saw the village pub selling Elvis Burgers, is thought to have raised more than �1,000 for the St Elizabeth Hospice in Ipswich.

Simon, who performs under the stage name Harry Isaac Presley, had chosen the charity after the care they show his father David, 58, who died at the hospice in April last year.

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