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A 27 stone dad who was so heavy he broke beds and chairs has been crowned Slimming World ‘s Man of the Year after shedding half of his body weight.

David Winchester was so large his stomach made it difficult to use the steering wheel when driving, struggled to buy clothes that fit him and suffered abuse in the streets from strangers.

However, the 36-year-old has now turned his life around by shedding 14-and-a-half stone.

David said his father-in-law’s dying wish was for him to lose weight and he hasn’t looked back since.

The data analyst from Kent said he would rarely leave the house before, and had wanted to lose weight for years but never found the motivation or right method.

David, who lives with his wife Susie, 35, daughter Heidi, seven, and four-year-old Freddie, said: “I knew I had a problem, but it wasn’t until the wake when my mother-in-law told me her husband’s dying wish was for me to join Slimming World that I decided to do something about it.

“He’d been a member of the local Baptist church and had seen the posters for a Slimming World group that was held there.

“I knew he wanted the best for his daughter and grandchildren, so I decided to try and tackle my weight once and for all.”

He added: “What I loved about Slimming World was that I could still eat big, hearty portions so I never felt hungry.

“I’ve tried every diet you can think of. Soups, juices, calorie counting… they all worked for a while but I’d inevitably end up hungry and reaching for the nearest quick fix, usually crisps chocolate or the takeaway menu.

“So with Slimming World it was amazing to me that I could lose weight and still have a full English and steak and chips.”

The dad-of-two said however that by far the biggest benefit of losing weight has been the impact on his family life, adding: “I finally feel like the dad I always wanted to be.

“Heidi and I went to Park Run together recently and she absolutely loved it. There’s no way I could have done something like that with her before I lost weight. I barely had any energy to play with her at all.

“I hope that her grandfather is proud of how far we have come as a family. We’re all active, happy and healthy and I think that’s the life he wanted for us.”

He said he was doing well until the pandemic hit when he found bad habits creeping back.

So, when in October 2021 Slimming World opened back up again, he decided to join his local group in Ashford.

He said: “I felt nervous because I had this perception that the group would be really cliquey and full of women and I worried I’d be made to feel even more ashamed for being so overweight than I already was.

“It was nothing like that at all so, so much better than I imagined. I wasn’t the only guy there and everyone I met was so warm and supportive, plus we all had one thing in common – we all wanted to lose weight.”