The total raised over the fundraising events this year reached £39,389,048 by the end of Friday’s telethon on BBC One.
BBC Children in Need’s 2021 Appeal show saw the Great British public once again going above and beyond to support children and young people across the UK to thrive and be the best they can be, raising a whopping £39,389,048 during the charity’s 41st Appeal show.
Live on BBC One from 7pm on Friday, the charity’s 2021 Appeal show marked the crescendo of this year’s fundraising activities for CiN. Presented by Ade Adepitan MBE, Mel Giedroyc, Graham Norton, Chris Ramsey and Alex Scott MBE from MediaCity UK, Salford, the 2021 show featured a glittering array of famous faces to entertain the nation, whilst shining a light on the children and young people across the UK facing disadvantage.
The show was opened with a spectacular performance from global superstar, Ed Sheeran MBE, who performed his new track, Overpass Graffiti, to kick-off the show. Viewers were then treated to a special sports day sketch which saw some of Britain’s best athletes take on a plethora of sports day challenges. The hilarious sketch saw multi medal winning Paralympic cyclist Dame Sarah Storey and gold medal gymnast Max Whitlock MBE captain two teams of sports stars as they took on a series of classic sports day challenges, all led by Clare Balding OBE who took on the role of PE teacher with gusto whilst brandishing her whistle with pride!
Elsewhere in the show, there was a heart-warming special of The Repair Shop, which saw Jay Blades and Teddy Bear Ladies, Amanda Middleditch and Julie Tatchell, carry out a very special restoration for Billy and his mum, Mandy. The poignant special reflected on the support Billy had received from a BBC Children in Need funded project, and saw his beloved teddy, Henry, restored to his former glory.
The show also saw Danny Dyer present a special edition of the popular BBC One gameshow, The Wall, especially for BBC Children in Need. The special edition saw CBBC TV presenters Sam and Mark tackle The Wall whilst pondering tricky questions in an attempt to raise as much money as possible for the charity.
In a fitting tribute to the charity’s Life-President, the show also saw the presentation of the sixth Sir Terry Wogan Fundraiser of the Year Award. The accolade recognises the charity’s fundraisers, of whom Sir Terry was a huge champion, and this year was awarded to Amy Wright, who has raised tens of thousands of pounds for BBC Children in Need over her many years of fundraising. Amy was presented her award by Michael Ball, who led the call for nominees and championed the special award on his BBC Radio 2 show this year.
Another truly special moment on the night saw 13-year-old Sam, who benefitted from BBC Children in Need funding after his father’s death, take to the stage to give a breathtakingly beautiful performance of Lost Without You by Freya Ridings.
Elsewhere in the show, two worlds collided in a hilarious sketch which saw EastEnders’ Janine Butcher (played by Charlie Brooks) looking for love and turning to Channel 4’s hit dating show First Dates to help with her search. In an unexpected twist, her date for the evening was none other than Coronation Street’s very own Steve McDonald (played by Simon Gregson), who wasn’t actually looking for love – he just fancied a meat pie. He ultimately was shooed away by Emmerdale’s Eric Pollard (Chris Chittell).
An I Can See Your Voice special, hosted by Paddy McGuinness, which saw Jimmy Carr, Alison Hammond and Amanda Holden investigate the musical talents of BBC Sport presenter Mike Bushell, broadcaster and Radio 2 presenter Jason Mohammad and Newsreader Kate Silverton while Mel Giedroyc and Graham Norton faced the iconic black chair and the glare of the spotlight as they took on Mastermind under the watchful eye of Clive Myrie.
“What a truly remarkable evening – we’ve laughed, we’ve cried, but above all, we’ve been inspired by the children and young people who so bravely shared their stories. Kindness sits at the heart of all that we do, and tonight the kindness of the UK has shone through and shown the children and young people across the UK that need us most, that we are here for them. Thank you.” – Simon Antrobus, Chief Executive, BBC Children in Need