Charities missing out on thousands of pounds from what should have been the 40th London Marathon on Sunday are asking people to sign-up to a new challenge.

The organisers of the biggest mass participation sports events across the country have teamed-up to create the new 2.6 Challenge, launching on Sunday to help during the pandemic.

People are being asked to find an activity based around the numbers 2.6 or 26 and fundraise. The challenge is open to all ages but everyone must follow government guidelines on exercise and social distancing.

It could be running, walking, going up and down stairs 26 times, doing a 26-minute exercise class or getting 26 people on a video call to join a workout.

“We want people to get active, have fun and raise money to help save the UK’s charities by giving money or raising funds for the charity close to your heart,” said Nick Rusling, co-chairman of the organising group.

Norfolk and Waveney Mind is urging its supporters to raise money for its services by donating to Mind on Virgin Money Giving or JustGiving via twopointsixchallenge.co.uk

Philip Eke, Norfolk and Waveney Mind chief executive, said the charity has needed to adapt the way it delivered services and plan how to manage support needed due to the impact of the pandemic on the people’s mental health and wellbeing.

The Purfleet Trust, a King’s Lynn-based charity helping homeless people, is also hoping for support from the challenge with donations via twopointsixchallenge.co.uk

A spokesman said: “We hope you’ll join the nation in The 2.6 Challenge and help to save the UK’s charities.”