Comic Relief charity telethon raises record 75m pounds

Updated: Mar 16, 2013, 15:57 PM IST

London: Celebrities and the public have helped this year’s Comic Relief charity telethon to raise a record 75 million pounds so far.

Comedian Lenny Henry, a founder of the Red Nose Day fundraiser - now in its 25th year, kicked off the live show on BBC One.

Simon Cowell, singer Jessie J, comedian Peter Kay and boy band One Direction also made appearances.

There were also reinterpretations of hit TV shows such as ‘The Vicar of Dibley’ and ‘Call the Midwife,’ Ricky Gervais resurrected his David Brent character in a mini-episode of ‘The Office.’

David Walliams featured in a sketch alongside the likes of supermodel Kate Moss, footballer Frank Lampard, Hollywood stars Gwyneth Paltrow and Hugh Grant and veteran comedian Ronnie Corbett.

Across the country people dressed up during the day to help raise money for good causes in the UK and Africa.

The television broadcast began at 19:00 GMT, with Henry revealing a special gold Red Nose suit, saying that it had been “25 years of truly incredible fundraising, truly incredible comedy and... truly incredible suits.”

Shortly after 01:30 GMT, Russell Brand announced that the money raised stood at 75,107,851 pounds - passing 2011’s total of 74.3 million pounds.

Hosts on stage included Dermot O’Leary, Claudia Winkleman and Jonathan Ross and former ‘Dr Who’ actor David Tennant and footballer David Beckham were among those to appeal to the public to make donations.