The Sport Relief Weekend kicked off on Friday with a fantastic night of sporting fun and sketches galore, as this year’s Sport Relief Night of TV (BBC One & BBC Two) entertained the nation while raising an incredible £51,242,186.
Money raised will help change the lives of vulnerable people in the UK and around the world, with more still coming in from fundraisers taking part in the first ever Sainsbury’s Sport Relief Games.
Included in the overall total and the largest corporate donation on the night was £6,508,010 raised by Sainsbury’s colleagues and customers who have been joining in with the fun and games across the country by doing all manner of fundraising. Sainsbury’s also raised money by selling the range of must-have merchandise, which includes the official headband and t-shirt, and is still available to buy until Tuesday 25th March in store.
The overall total also includes money raised by this year’s BT Sport Relief Challenge: Davina – Beyond Breaking Point, a seven day ordeal that saw Davina McCall battle brutal weather to run, swim and cycle from Edinburgh to London – covering over 450 miles. Davina’s epic challenge raised an incredible £2,239,931 with £537,082 of that pledged by BT.
BT handled over 300,000 calls to the donation line during the live TV show, peaking at 244 calls per second. BT coordinated over 7,000 volunteers at 87 call centres across the UK.
Through its ‘Flying Start’ partnership, British Airways has raised £2,400,380 this Sport Relief from money donated by customers on board, as well as from staff competing in fund-raising events. British Airways colleagues will also be hosting supporters of the very first Sainsbury’s Sport Relief Games at the event village at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
Football clubs, fans and players throughout England and Wales have joined in the fun and games too this Sport Relief to celebrate the Premier League’s long-term partnership with Sport Relief, which has this year seen the Premier League donate an amazing £1million.
Reflecting the UK public’s generous support for Sport Relief, the UK government have matched £10million of public donations to help create jobs, build businesses and increase trade in some of the poorest countries in the world, so people can lift themselves out of poverty for good.
The One Show’s Alex Jones took on a challenge of her own for Sport Relief, climbing the 1200ft Moonlight Buttress sandstone rock in Zion National Park, Utah in just two and a half days. Her mammoth effort raised an incredible £1,281,476.
Footballing legends Alan Shearer and Robbie Savage also took on their very own challenge for Sport Relief with the Battle of the Backsides – which saw the pair frantically race to be the first to sit on half the seats in the iconic Wembley Stadium – a brutal 45,000 seats each. So far, their challenge has raised an impressive £443,596.
Hosting the TV extravaganza on the BBC were Gary Lineker, David Walliams, Davina McCall, Claudia Winkleman, Jack Whitehall and Fearne Cotton; with Clare Balding presenting the Clash of the Titans action from the London Aquatics Centre, and Gabby Logan reporting on the two track cycling events and rhythmic gymnastics at the Lee Valley VeloPark.
Sport Relief (BBC One & BBC Two) was packed with incredible entertainment, with highlights including:
- Sport Relief hero, John Bishop, and four-time Olympic medal winner, Sebastian Coe joined by two teams of celebrities and went head to head in the Clash of the Titans – taking on track cycling, team rhythmic gymnastics, synchronised swimming and a swimming relay, with Team Coe claiming victory.
- The eagerly-awaited one-off Only Fools and Horses sketch seeing Del Boy (David Jason) and Rodney (Nicholas Lyndhurst) joined in Peckham by David Beckham.
- A Strictly Come Dancing Paralympians special was won by wheelchair athlete Hannah Cockroft. She out-danced fellow paralympians Nathan Stephens, David Clarke and Martine Wright to take home the Sport Relief glitter ball trophy.
- Ian Fletcher (Hugh Bonneville) offering his Big Thoughts on what the Sport Relief campaign embodies in a special W1A sketch filmed especially for the night.
- Miranda Hart leading the nation in a maracas work out to ’I’m in the Mood for Dancing’ by the Nolan Sisters, recorded especially for Sport Relief.
- David Walliams presenting a special footballer’s edition of Celebrity Mastermind featuring Michael Dawson (Tottenham Hotspur F.C.), Scott Parker (Fulham F.C.) and Jack Wilshere (Arsenal F.C.).
- The first play of the World Cup video, featuring Gary Barlow, Gary Linekar, Emma Bunton, Melanie C, Glenn Hoddle, Sir Geoff Hurst, Michael Owen, and many more.
- Highlights from this year’s celebrity challenges including The BT Sport Relief Challenge: Davina – Beyond Breaking Point, The Battle of the Backsides with Alan Shearer and Robbie Savage, and The One Show’s Alex Jones’ Alex Against the Rock.
- Little Mix performed the official Sport Relief single, Word Up! – a cover of the 1986 smash hit by Cameo.
- Kylie Minogue performing ‘Especially for You’ for the first time live on UK television for 25 years, with help from David Walliams and Jason Donavan.
- Legendary Irish boyband Boyzone perform in the studio.
- There were also powerful reminders of the serious side of Sport Relief, with moving appeal films presented by the likes of Davina McCall, Little Mix and David Tennant showing how the money raised could help change lives both here in the UK and around the world.
For those who missed out or just can’t get enough of the Sport Relief TV gold, two packages crammed with exclusive content from the World Cup video and Only Fools and Horses sketch are available to buy from iTunes – iTunes.com/sportrelief. Also available to download are “Word Up”, the official Sport Relief single by Little Mix, and the Make Every Mile Count app.
Sport Relief would like to thank each and every person who donated or gave their time to join in the fun and games.