Peter Andre Surprises Fans and ‘Puts the Nation’s Generosity to the Test’

The Australian singer Peter Andre busks to raise money for homeless charity Shelter. Encouraging passers-by to pay through their mobile phones he finds out if British people are as generous as they claim to be.

New research released today finds that despite a majority of Brits wanting to give money to street artists and charity collectors, most times they find themselves frustratingly out of cash.

The research by Nationwide Building Society reveals that four in five Brits believe we’re a generous nation and found that Brits give an average of £2.34 a pop to buskers or charity collectors.

Men are found to be more charitable than women, giving higher on average (£2.69 vs £2.02), and young Brits aged 18-to-24 give more than double the amount than those aged 55+.

Regionally, people from Glasgow are found to be the most charitable to buskers and charity collectors, giving an average of £3.97 each time, whereas donations from Nottingham fall below the average at £1.36.

More than two-fifths claim they would give more to streets artists and homeless people if they didn’t have to rely on cash.

Paul Horlock from Nationwide Building Society says “Just two years ago, contactless payments accounted for one in 20 Nationwide card payments, now it’s one in three. This demonstrates a sharp rise in consumers wanting to ‘tap and pay’ with their mobile or card rather than having to carry cash. With this reduction in the use of cash, it is important that we encourage charities to utilise modern methods of collecting donations so they can continue to capitalise on the generous nature of the British people, even when they aren’t carrying cash day to day.”

We put the nation’s generosity to the test; singer Peter Andre did an impromptu gig to find out if a street artist accepting cashless mobile payments would encourage more people to cough up and banish the “sorry, got no cash” excuse.

Peter Andre says, “I and the band came to London today to help raise money for the charity Shelter and all the amazing work that they do throughout the UK. By doing a secret gig on the streets like this and using mobile payments to make it quick and easy for people to donate, we managed to raise hundreds of pounds from people’s kind donations in a matter of minutes.”

It was later revealed that the former I’m A Celeb star was paid thousands of pounds to busk for 15 minutes in a charity fundraiser that raised just £260. He has since claimed that nine days after the performance he voluntarily gave a “substantial” amount to Shelter, which is fighting soaring homelessness on our streets. Two weeks later Andre tweeted again about the event but said he had been working with Nationwide, which was campaigning to get people to give via mobiles and debit cards.

The £260 collected was from electronic donations and by Nationwide staff at the gig wearing T-shirts showing a Shelter logo and a smaller reference to the building society.

Andre’s performance will reignite the debate over whether stars should be paid large sums for charity work. Last year there was outrage when it emerged celebs are paid to appear on charity editions of popular TV quiz shows such as Pointless and The Chase.

Sometimes they take home more than they raise for their chosen good cause.

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Peter Andre © Joe Alvarez

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