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Invercargill Mayor Tim Shadbolt 'gets his kit off' for good cause

Invercargill's outrageously down-to-earth mayor, Tim Shadbolt, is backing a fellow Southlander going through a rough time by "getting his kit off".

Winton man Blair Vining, who has terminal bowel cancer, has one large item left on his bucket list - to see a national cancer plan launched so the lives of others can be saved. A petition, with almost 47,000 signatures, will be handed over at parliament by Clutha-Southland MP Hamish Walker at the end of the month.

Mr Vining has kick-started the online campaign, #getyourkitoff4agoodcause, asking people to raise awareness for his cause, and nominate others to get on board.

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Blair is in a hurry to tick off projects on his list because time is short. Source: 1 NEWS

Among them, Mr Shadbolt put his hand up - releasing a video last night, where he calls Mr Vining "a national hero".

"We're so proud of you making a stand for the whole of New Zealand," he says in the clip, while nominating other Southland groups to take the Blair Vining Challenge in getting their kit off too.

Mr Shadbolt told 1 NEWS today he was approached by one of Mr Vining's friends to help out the cause by filming a video.

"I thought the video's is a bit cheeky, not indecent, but it's flirtatious," he said. "Humour attracts support."

His photoshopped version of the video was "slightly optimistic", he joked. "I think it's a fair representation of a 72-year-old."

The video has been viewed more than 8000 times since last night, and Mr Shadbolt said, "it certainly triggered Blair's wife who's seen it 100 times and cracks up with laughter".

He was pleased to bring some joy to the family during their "dire predicament".

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Blair Vining’s an ordinary Kiwi bloke with an extraordinary story Source: Seven Sharp

"It's just that he's [Mr Vining] done nothing wrong, but he's been struck down at the age of 38.

"I think it's a critical campaign to draw attention to an emotional thing instead of self pity," Mr Shadbolt said. "Every family in New Zealand will know someone who's suffered from this disease."

He described the Southland region as was "a close-knit community" which had backed Mr Vining. "He'd be known by hundreds of friends and neighbours."

Watch Mr Shadbolt's full video here