NHS Choir's charity single, A Bridge Over You, has topped the UK's official Christmas singles chart by beating Justin Bieber as well as other established singers. The charity single sold nearly 31,000 more units than Bieber's Love Yourself, which came in a close second.
While the single sold more than 127,000 units, Bieber's album sold 97,000 units. The choir, comprising doctors, nurses and others, however, got a little help from Bieber, who earlier this week had urged his 72 million Twitter followers to buy the single.
When the choir was trailing behind Bieber's Love Yourself, Beiber had tweeted: "I'm hearing this UK Christmas race is close... but @Choir_NHS single is for charity. So for 1 week it's ok not be #1. Let's do the right thing & help them win. It's Christmas. @Choir_NHS good luck. This is what it's all about. Merry Christmas."
Even though Bieber lost out on the No 1 spot in the singles chart, he still has three songs in the top five: Love Yourself in the second spot, Sorry at the third and What Do You Mean at the fifth.
After it was announced that the charity single had topped the UK's Official Christmas Number 1 singles for 2015, the NHS Choir told OfficialCharts.com: "We are absolutely overwhelmed and couldn't be any happier. It's a brilliant celebration for the NHS across the country, so well done and thank you everyone for downloading and streaming. A massive cheer for the NHS, thank you!" The money collected from the sale will go to health charities including Carers UK and Mind.
"Justin Bieber has put a smile on a lot of people's faces. He has made our campaign global. So we have to send him a massive 'thank you'," Joe Blunden, an NHS communications manager who is one of the organisers of the choir's chart campaign, said.
"It's just ridiculous that it's the NHS versus Justin Bieber, but that's all in the jolliness of it. You don't expect an NHS choir to make the top 40 so to be honest, we're [already] massively pleased. If we got to No 1, it would be insanity – but a really good version of it," NHS choir member and children's doctor Katie Rogerson had said.
A Bridge Over You, originally recorded in 2013, is a fusion of Coldplay and Simon and Garfunkel songs. Adele's album 25 became the bestselling album of Christmas 2015 and she also had a single in the fourth spot in the singles chart. 25 has sold more than 450,000 units till now.